MLM Companies


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Despite its 55+ year history, a question that I get asked all the time is, “Is Shaklee a scam?“, and smartly so. Even though it’s a very small minority of companies, you have to do your research to make sure that any company that you’re considering joining is both a legitimate business and that it offers a high quality product which you can stand behind as a business owner. Do they make the cut?

In-Depth Reviews To See if Shaklee Is Legit or Another Scam

Shaklee is a corporation based out of Pleasanton, CA which manufactures a wide variety of natural health and environmentally friendly aka “green” products ranging from  high quality vitamins and supplements, cellular anti-aging, natural weight loss, personal and skin care, and biodegradable cleaning concentrates.   Even though the company is the #1 natural nutrition company in the U.S. based on sales, they were also the first company in the world to be certified “Climate Neutral” (meaning they offset all their CO2 emissions and a zero net impact on the environment), which to me at least is extremely impressive.  Shaklee is proof that a company can do well financially while at the same time doing good for the environment. I’m looking at you, Monsanto…

Shaklee’s History

The company was founded in 1956 by Dr. Forrest Shaklee after spending  over 40 years researching vitamins and minerals and how they help promote health.  At the time, taking vitamins wasn’t a common practice in the U.S., so they chose the MLM business model to market the product directly to the consumer on a one-to-one basis. Starting in the early 60′s, Shaklee started manufacturing Basic-H, a biodegradable plant-based cleaning concentrate, which has remained one of their most popular products even to this day.

In 2004, the company was purchased by billionaire investor and current CEO, Roger Barnett, who has overseen Shaklee’s current meteoric growth phase with their products being featured on The Rachael Ray Show and even as one of Oprah’s “Favorite Things”. So far, so good right?

Does Shaklee Have a History of Scamming Distributors or Customers?

In my experience with network marketing  training, I’ve seen that most of the time when someone claims that a company is a scam, it’s because they were a former distributor that didn’t receive any real marketing training beyond “go talk to everyone you know”. Sure, talking about Shaklee or any other business with your friends and family is something that I recommend you do, but I don’t think a company should base its entire training program on talking to your best friend and brother-in-law. Does that make sense?

Just to be safe though, I checked into the company reviews with the Better Business Bureau to see if Shaklee has a history of  “scam complaints” or anything like that, and I’m happy to say that they currently have an A+ rating.

Is Shaklee a Scam?

From my research and experience, I would say NO. Here are a few points that I’ve considered:

  • Shaklee has been around for over 50 years. The real scams don’t last anywhere near that long before they’re discovered and shut down.
  • They offer a real, tangible products and is even the official nutrition sponsor of the US Olympic Ski Team. Pyramid schemes, like Bernie Madoff ran, don’t actually sell a real product or service.
  • Shaklee products are used by NASA and have even been endorsed by people like Rachael Ray and Oprah who have entire teams that watch out for possible scams.
  • They do business in 7 countries, so it’s unlikely that they would be able to fool 7 different governments. Wouldn’t you agree?
  • Shaklee has spent over $250 Million on research and development for their products. They’ve published numerous studies in peer-reviewed scientific journals which outline the effectiveness of their products.

Shaklee Is NOT a Scam

To be fair, in order to be successful in Shaklee, or any other network marketing company for that matter, you have to learn how to market your business outside of your friends and family. This often neglected fact is, in my opinion, the major reason why many people think companies like Shaklee may be a scam. They dive into a business thinking they’re going to make millions, and when their best friend decides not to join right away, they run out of people to talk to and end up quitting a few months later.

My recommendation is to discuss how your potential Shaklee sponsor is going to help you effectively market your business (my preference is online, but there are many ways to connect with people who are actively searching to join your business) once you’ve spoken with your warm market. If they can’t give you a good answer, then you might consider using a network marketing system to build your business or even finding another sponsor who can show you how to market your Shaklee business effectively.

If this has helped you, please leave me a comment below!

To YOUR Unlimited Success,

Brian Rakowski Thumbnail

Brian Rakowski

Online Marketing Coach

Popularity: 27% [?]


Even though Nikken is a 35 year old network marketing company that does business in over 37 countries, some people often wonder when they’re looking at the company for the first time, “Is Nikken a scam?”. It’s smart to do your research, so here is some brief information I found that I hope will help you in your journey.

In 1975, Isamu Masuda had vision to start a company that are based on the five pillars of optimal health, which are a healthy body, mind, community, finances, and family. Without all five, he thought, one couldn’t reach their true potential of health and happiness. Sounds good, right? With that in mind he invented Nikken’s first product, Magsteps magnetic insoles, which were conceived through the universal desire for everyone to be free from aching feet and drain it has on your entire body. The design was inspired by the pebbled design of the floors in Japanese public baths which were coupled with magnets to truly energize the body. Since the beginning, the majority of Nikkens‘ products have incorporated magnets into their design including massagers, bedding products, footware, and even water filtration products.

Is Nikken Using Pseudo-Science To Scam Customers?

It all depends on who you ask and if you put any stock into traditional, alternative health practices or if you prefer to go the pharmaceutical route. Some people will say that they feel less fatigued and have an overall better sense of well being while others may feel no difference at all with magnet therapy products. This is something that you’ll need to be aware of if you’re considering building a Nikken business since you may encounter some skeptics along the way who may look at the technology as being a scam without actually doing their own research. Considering the company has been around over 30 years and has a great reputation with its products, I would be overly concerned about the skeptics.

Nikken’s Leadership Team

It’s important to take the leadership team into consideration when you’re reviewing a company like Nikken for the first time, because the overall direction the company takes is based on their actions and expertise. I’m glad to say that Nikken’s entire leadership team has a long history of success, and most importantly their President, Toshizo (Tom) Watanabe, comes from a network marketing background. That’s good to see since it shows that the company has a commitment to the industry and likely wouldn’t entertain the idea of getting out as some companies have done in the past.

Review of the Nikken Compensation Plan

There are basically 5 different ways that you can earn money as an independent consultant with Nikken:

  1. Retail profits of the sale of products of up to 30%.
  2. Wholesale profits from rebates as you progress thorough the ranks.
  3. Performance & Leadership bonuses up to 6% on each level of your downline.
  4. Residual Income as you mentor and train your team.
  5. Incentive Programs that can pay for your car and home.

Some Failed Consultants May Call Nikken a Scam Due To A Lack In Real Marketing Training

Unfortunately, many companies like Nikken provide the same old MLM training where they tell you to make a list of everyone you’ve ever met, have you call them endlessly until they attend a hotel meeting or change their phone number, and show people how to do the same. The same training has been given across the MLM industry for the past 60 years with almost no adjustments to keep up with the modern internet age of marketing. To be clear, you absolutely should talk to people offline about your business just like you would if you bought a franchise or started any other type of business, but you need to incorporate an online network marketing system as well in order to be in contact with enough people to have a chance at success. Does that make sense?

My recommendation is to learn the necessary skills to generate a massive amount of leads for your Nikken business, or any other network marketing company you choose to join, so you don’t fall into the group of people who are claiming there’s some major “Nikken scam” going on when it’s obviously a legitimate business opportunity.

If you liked this article, please leave me a comment below and don’t forget to check out my free MLM training bootcamp!

To A Future of Unlimited Success,

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Brian Rakowski
Network Marketing Veteran & Online Marketer

Popularity: 89% [?]


Launched in late 2009, Asea’s primary product is a misunderstood nutritional supplement which is causing a lot of people to claim that Asea is scam. When you look at the label, it’s easy to see why they’d think that since, well, the ingredients are Sodium Chloride and water. In case you didn’t do so well in chemistry class, Sodium Chloride is the proper name for salt.

Is Asea Really a Salt Water Scam?

Initially, my reaction was similar to many people in that I thought this product was just a slick way for Asea to package something worthless and sell it as a revolutionary new health supplement, but instead of stopping there like so many people do, I decided to see if there’s something to the scientific claims they were making.

Asea Reactive Molecules

The science behind  their flagship product is based on two types of natural substances that are produced by the body called “reactive molecules“. These substances are used by the body to accomplish to main things:

  • Slow down the body’s natural aging process by activating antioxidants that are already present.
  • Support your immune system to aid in healing by helping repair your body’s natural cell damage.

As you can see, these substances are extremely important to the body in order to maintain good health, but through things like stress, poor nutrition, and everyday toxins we’re exposed to, the body starts to produce less and less of these vital molecules. Not good, right?

Where Asea came in is they took over 16 years worth of research into these molecules (aka Redox Signaling Molecules) and overcame the primary challenge of being able to produce stable molecules outside of the body. The result is a very interesting product that, as you can see, people are quick to refer to as some sort of “Asea scam” instead of taking the time to do some research.

Asea’s Leadership Team

When you’re reviewing a company like Asea, it’s important to take into account the experience of it’s leadership team to get an idea of their potential longevity as a new enterprise. ASEA’s founders, Verdis Norton and James Pack, bring a 50+ year combined history as high level executives in major corporations such as Kraft Foods and various companies in the telecommunications industry, respectively.

It’s unclear if they have any prior experience in the MLM industry which is something that I always look for in a company as well. There have been some instances of companies in the past who decided to get out of network marketing, and my opinion is that’s partially because when the corporate leadership doesn’t have industry experience, it’s easy for them to sit in a board meeting and say, “Let’s do something else!”. The last thing you’d want is to potentially lose a business that you’ve spent time and energy building.

Due to the nature of Asea’s products, I wouldn’t be too concerned about this happening.

Asea Compensation Plan

Asea uses a traditional binary compensation plan which means your business is built with two separate “legs” (sort of like an upside down peace sign). Every month you earn a 10% commission on the sales volume of the smaller leg with additional bonuses being paid out depending on your sales volume. These include:

  • Retail Sales Differential (Difference between wholesale and retail price paid by customers)
  • Preferred Customer Bonus ($25 every time one of your preferred customers purchases a case of product at the wholesale price of $120)
  • Fast Start Bonus
  • Director’s Bonus ($50 bonus each time one of your personally sponsored Associates achieves the rank of Director)
  • Check Match Bonus
  • Leadership Pool Bonus (ASEA reserves 2% of the total company sales volume for it’s top Associates)

Lack of Real World Training May Lead to Failed Distributors Calling Asea a Scam

To be fair, the vast majority of network marketing companies provide the traditional MLM training of “make a list of all your friends and family, invite them to a hotel meeting every week until they join or stop taking your calls, then do it again.” It’s not that this system doesn’t work since that’s exactly how many of the six and seven figure businesses were built in the 70′s and 80′s, but the truth is this method isn’t the best approach for everyone. Yes, if you carry a lot of influence with your friends and family, this is a very effective way to build your Asea business.

Where companies like Asea fall short is providing training on how to effectively market your business using methods like social media and the internet. My recommendation is to find a mentor who is successfully building a business online and offline who can show you what it takes to create an absolute dynasty for yourself and your family by using a real network marketing system.

(Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with Asea in any way and am providing my opinion that Asea is NOT a scam and is legitimate opportunity based on my 10 year history in the industry.)

To YOUR Ridiculous Success,

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Brian Rakowski
Network Marketing Coach

Popularity: 100% [?]