Promises, promises...

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Mefiante (June 28, 2007, 08:54:45 AM):
Pyramid schemes, in particular promise-based ones, are on the rise again in SA.

A product-based pyramid that seems to have upped its TV advertising drive recently by several notches is Nature's Health Products. Have a look at their Policies and Procedures to see why they're a pyramid scheme. Also, on their "About Us" page it is written that they "have tens of thousands of distributors throughout Southern Africa and each month [they] are recruiting thousands of new distributors."

Why do most of these shysters concentrate on the health and nutrition market segment? Could it be that people who are easily taken in by the promises such products usually make are also the kind of people who can't see they're being shamelessly used? Or could it be simply that there are so darn many of them?

'Luthon64
bluegray (June 28, 2007, 11:37:15 AM):
First of all, I don't know the products that Nature's Health sell, so I don't know how effective they are. But it looks like it's mostly natural products that wouldn't be too harmful in the wrong hands. So you don't have to be an expert to sell them safely. Add to that the positive image you get as a seller of natural remedies and the good feeling of helping people. So anyone can do this and feel good about themselves. The perfect product for a pyramid scheme.
Mefiante (July 02, 2007, 07:44:07 AM):
First of all, I don't know the products that Nature's Health sell, so I don't know how effective they are.
The products are predominantly supplements that purport to cover the usual spectrum of mostly non-specific human ailments such as stress, anxiety, aches, pains, immune system, libido, infections, stamina and so on. There's no hint about them having been formally tested in any way so it's safe to assume that they're just as effective (or not) as competing products.


But it looks like it's mostly natural products that wouldn't be too harmful in the wrong hands. So you don't have to be an expert to sell them safely. Add to that the positive image you get as a seller of natural remedies and the good feeling of helping people. So anyone can do this and feel good about themselves. The perfect product for a pyramid scheme.
Yeah, that seems about right, except to add that the products are consumable too, so that people can be expected to continue buying and selling them. Another factor assisting the easy pushing of this product type may be that they do not qualify as medications per se, so that they don't require registration. But if people took to heart the advice of their doctors and nutritionists that, assuming an otherwise reasonably healthy diet, such supplements are largely a complete waste of money, one hopes they would also then quickly see through such scams.

Nonetheless, it would be interesting to see some representative and independently researched income figures for various levels in the Nature's Health Products hierarchy — figures we are not likely to see any time soon.

'Luthon64
bluegray (July 17, 2007, 02:58:58 AM):
Just saw an add on the tv for these products - it sure smells like a pyramid scheme
Mefiante (July 17, 2007, 09:54:30 AM):
Yes, it was a TV advert that first alerted us as well – on SABC1, if I remember correctly. What annoys us is that these people seem intent on exploiting the next-to-poorest SA population segment.

'Luthon64

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