HostThenProfit: No recruitment, no commissions
A recent trend in MLM opportunities these days is to offer training products (usually ebooks) to help internet marketers market other opportunities.
This works to the advantage of the company offering the training in that if things don’t work, they can always suggest it was the opportunity the marketer was trying to promote that was the problem, rather than a failure of the training tools they are providing.
Putting aside the rather disturbing trend in MLM to pair dubiously legal matrix based compensation plans with rehashed training tools of late, one common part of the equation that’s missing from these opportunities is an online platform to get started.
You can have all the internet marketing training tools in the world, but if you’ve got none of the technical knowhow, not even a helping hand to guide you, then you’re not going to be able to apply any of it.
HostThenProfit seeks to bridge that need by combining web hosting along with a series of internet marketing tools.
Designed to be a complete internet marketing solution for those in MLM, today we’re going to review the HostThenProfit business opportunity.
HostThenProfit is a division of Global Virtual Opportunities (GVO). Founded by Joel Therien, GVO was launched back in October 2009 and offers its members a series internet based marketing tools.
As far as I can tell, HostThenProfit appears to be a bundling of some of these marketing tools, along with the web hosting GVO retail into a brand new MLM network marketing opportunity.
Although a part of the GVO family, HostThenProfit has its own compensation plan and appears as if it will be run as a seperate entity within GVO.
The HostThenProfit Product Line
Offering internet based services, the HostThenProfit opportunities consist of web hosting bundled with marketing tools.
HostThenProfit offer webhosting (somewhere to host all your websites) as well as providing four domains for you to create.
Hosting size is 70gb in storage a month and 200gb in bandwidth. Note that these figures were sourced elsewhere and I haven’t been able to confirm anything with GVO directly (I note they are the same as offered in GVO’s ‘Titanium’ web hosting package).
As an internet marketer, there’s a lot of value to be had in an email list you build over the years. No matter what you’re doing on the internet communication with your team is key and that’s where eResponder Pro comes in.
HostThenProfit assure members the system isn’t designed to be used for spam (which the term ‘bulk email sender‘ HostThenProfit use inevitably conjures up), but rather as a reliable way to contact your opt-in email list that you’ve built over time – no matter how big it is.
There’s also an autoresponder component of eResponder Pro and this can be used to auto respond to emails that you get. Usually autoresponders are deployed to filter incoming leads your capture pages have generated, but they can also be used to filter your regular email too (useful if you receive a lot of emails, solicited or not).
GVO’s Blogger Builder is a blog platform that utilises WordPress. I’m a big fan of WordPress and providing GVO’s Blogger Builder isn’t too restrictive (it uses a customised GVO template), I imagine this will be of use to people who can’t get their head around designing and starting up their own blog(s).
Easy Video Producer
Easy Video Producer allows you to combine video you record off a webcam or other recording device, along with some pre-made templates they have.
Nothing you haven’t really been able to do with YouTube for years but I guess if generic templates are your thing Easy Video Producer might be of some use to you.
As the name suggests, GVO Conference is 5 member capacity video conferencing tool.
You can upgrade this to 500 member capacity but I imagine the idea here is that GVO Conference will serve as a means to show the leads you generate with the rest of HostThenProfit’s products a presentation for whatever business it is you’re promoting.
That and it could also be used to hold small meetings amongst your own frontline members.
HostThenProfit’s Prospecting System is essentially a lead capture page generating system.
Basically you make your pitch and hope to capture a lead (or at least their email) via the pages generated by the Prospecting System.
HostThenProfit specify that within this system the ‘ad copy (is) written for you‘ sounding like these are nothing more than replicated squeeze pages.
I personally believe the best capture pages are custom written for whatever is being marketed and thus I’d question the overall effectiveness of HostThenProfit’s Prospecting System.
Still, if you’re hopeless at this kind of stuff I guess an all in one system where you basically just pick your color scheme and punch in your opportunity name could be desirable.
GVO Academy is basically an online marketing training resource. Utilising ‘live workshops, streaming videos, and Q&A sessions‘, GVO Academy aims to pretty much teach you how to put all the other products on offer together.
GVO Academy has been around for a while now and as such I’d imagine there’d be quite a lot of resources for someone new to internet marketing to go over.
HostThenProfit claim membership to GVO Academy is worth $199 a month, but given it’s part of their $9.97 a month package, it appears the value of GVO Academy has severely diminished over time.
The HostThenProfit Compensation Plan
The HostThenProfit compensation plan is a 4×10 forced matrix. This means that the matrix runs ten levels deep and starting with you at the top, each position has four legs branching out from it.
As you fill your HostThenProfit organisation matrix, it should start to look something like this;
Commissions are paid out on various levels of the matrix and in order to earn these commissions, a HostThenProfit member must recruit others to the scheme.
- To unlock matrix levels 1-6, members must recruit two new members.
- To unlock matrix levels 7-10, members must recruit two additional members (four in total)
For every 14 people in your matrix, you are also granted an additional spot in the matrix. These additional spots can be ‘banked’ (set aside) so that if you recruit someone you think is going to be wildly succesful with HostThenProfit, you can position yourself directly under them and help them start off by being able to place new recruits directly into the upper levels of their matrix.
The commissions offered on the HostThenProfit matrix are as follows;
Quick Start Bonus
The Quick Start Bonus is paid out on the earning of any member you personally recruit into HostThenProfit.
If you’ve met your recruitment requirements, you will earn a 50% matching commission on the first month’s income of your directly sponsored members.
HostThenProfit offer a Matching Bonus on the members you directly recruit to the company. The Matching Bonus pays out 20% and runs ten levels deep, assuming you’ve met the recruitment requirements (4 new members) to earn commissions on ten levels of your matrix.
HostThenProfit state that the matching bonus is only available to Titanium members, but they don’t specify what a Titanium member is.
I note that GVO offer a ‘Titanium’ web hosting account for $44.95 a month, so perhaps there’s an upgrade option for members or a recruitment requirement to become a ‘Titanium member’.
For members you don’t directly sponsor, HostThenProfit offer a 5% matching bonus, paid out on all ten levels of your matrix.
For those wishing to join HostThenProfit, it appears you join the company on a 7-day trial basis for $1.
If at the end of this trial you wish to continue HostThenProfit will cost you $9.97 a month.
Note that you cannot join HostThenProfit without an affiliate referal code (someone has to sign you up).
Product wise HostThenProfit look much more complete than most thin marketing tool MLM’s out there.
With GVO having their own data centers and bandwidth, they essentially cut out the third-party required to set up your own hosting and as such can offer you a competitive price on domains, bandwidth and hosting.
The big downside here though is the compensation plan, specifically the requirements to;
Refer just two people and get paid down a full six levels.
Refer two more and get paid down a full 10 levels!
This is unmistakably a recruitment requirement and forces members to recruit new members into HostThenProfit, rather than to offer anything on a retail level.
This isn’t surprising considering that there isn’t a retail offering. It’s noted that
You need to have a sponsor to join HostThenProfit.com
No sponsor, no membership. Thus retailing HostThenProfit’s products is impossible (within HostThenProfit anyway, for the purposes of this review I’m not concerning myself with whether GVO offer separate retail services outside of the HostThenProfit opportunity).
That’s a pretty big stumbling block to overcome and will no doubt spur on claims that the entire opportunity itself then is a scam.
Given the inherent forced requirement to recruit, I might not use the word scam (as I have no doubt they will pay you out), but it definitely throws the entire legality of the HostThenProfit opportunity into question.
Proceed with caution on this one folks.
I couldn’t quite tell whether this comp plan is legal or not. It doesn’t say whether what exactly are the “earnings”. This is all very suspicious due to imprecise language (clearly NOT written with help of a lawyer).
If the products are sold to non-members, then it’s probably legal. If the products are all “self-consumption”, then it’s not legal. (US Law, of course)
You can’t join HostThenProfit without an affiliate link, so someone has to refer you.
At the current time there’s no way to purchase anything retail, you have to join the company which means someone has to recruit you.
Then it’s pretty much illegal matrix-type scam.
My Concern is everyone talks about a Sponsor, (WHAT DO THEY MEAN – SPONSOR?) I Can See The Potential and I’ve been a member of both GVO and GDI and Others. In which these Memberships I could NEVER CONTACT MY SPONSOR IN PERSON, Always Auto-Responder or Video replies (You are very important to us and will be in touch shortly).
I’ve Canceled and Re-joined to receive another SPONSOR, but the same results – Auto-Responder. The Time and Money Invested Blows Me Away. My Question Is Their A Sponsor Out There That Gives a Phone Number That Works And A Live Person That Answers The Phone? (NOT A Per-Recorded Message) GOOD LUCK!
Sponsor = upline = refer-er. Bogus.
I’m in GVO since years (was named kiosk.WS), first years I just used the products without sponsoring anyone. Sometimes I referred someone, so I brought in 9 people, some of them got inactive.
But from my 4 active refs I was able to build a team of over 500 refs. GVO is paying every month, products are good, support works in lightspeed, I’m really happy there!
My biggest criticism of GVO, specifically HosThenProfit was the recruitment focus of the comp plan.
So commissions wise you only earnt once you started recruiting.
and those you recruited went on to recruit more new members….
Not exactly confidence inspiring. Regardless of whether they’re paying, what the products are like or how support works – you’re still making 100% of your commissions via the recruitment of new members.
There’s also no retail option.
HostThenProfit is, like meetcheap a “light” version of GVO Products. There are many people in my Downline using the products for their classical business (hosting, autoresponders etc…) , they are referring other people, because they need the products too.
there`s no disadvantage of no retail, its hard to get these Products (Hosting, Conference, Responders etc.)in this Quality with this support at a lower price.
NO, a really big part are monthly commissions.
Yeah, recruiting people. When 100% of your commissions comes from recruiting people and there’s no retail, you have a problem.
And the monthly commissions are paid out of… membership fees. And you get membership fees by… recruiting people.
I know you’re going to argue that the membership fees are a product purchase, but I can’t purchase the product (or service) without participating in the compensation plan (true retail).
Thus all that’s being paid here is a membership fee, with access to services thrown in (because you can’t buy them).
No recruitment, no commissions, no participating… but you will get great tools for a good price! Whats your problem? That someone will earn some money in your upline?
That there’s no retail, so it’s membership being sold.
Apart from the fact that membership isn’t a product, 100% of revenue coming from members breakes the 70/30 rule… not to mention 100% of the commissions generated are via the recruitment of others.
First things first.
Great site oz. I like the work you’re doing.
I came across this review a couple months ago and didn’t take the time to respond, but wanted to ask a question.
I’m another person that’s been a customer/rep for GVO since they were kiosk.
I want to question your stance that if you can’t buy the service without a referring sponsor, that makes it less legitimate.
Just because a customer is eligible to participate in the opportunity side of things doesn’t seem to me that it precludes them from being considered a customer if they aren’t interested in marketing the opportunity.
A similar, although not exact comparison, would be Mary Kay’s website. You can’t purchase their products online without designating a Beauty Consultant to get credit/commission.
It’s not an exact comparison because you can’t then sell Mary Kay products after purchasing them unless you pay a nominal fee to join the business.
Thanks for your feedback and again good work on this site.
It doesn’t but it’s a defining difference between true retail.
True retail customers can’t participate in the compensation plan. Volunatry non-participation in the plan as a member isn’t enough to differentiate earning members and non-earning members (how do you differentiate between members unable to earn despite trying and those who choose not to?).
The only time I’m lenient on this is when membership to the company is completely free and everyone comes in as a customer (product sales/purchase is the only requirement for membership).
True retail still pays commissions, that’s not the issue.
Exactly. See the problem?
Isn’t that how HTP is actually set up?
Or am I misunderstanding your statement?
I classify HostThenProfit’s offering as membership because you’re paying for access to multiple services (subscription based), rather than a product.
The companies I was referencing (sorry should have clarified this) are based around a or many tangible products. Membership is not a product IMO (and by providing access to services that can’t be bought at a retail level GVO’s offering is membership IMO).
The ‘you can’t purchase anything without being signed up by someone’ then becomes a concern because we’re talking about membership, rather than tangible products.
The services might very well be tangigle products if they were offered seperately and purchaseable, but they’re not. You pay for membership which then provides access to a bunch of services. Membership is what’s being paid for with access thrown in as a condition of membership.
Okay. I’m not trying to throw this off topic, but I’m trying to grasp your take on this.
Let’s take the parent company, GVO, and recent changes they have made.
If you go to the main site gogvo.com and decide to purchase the service it doesn’t require you to give a sponsor. At least not that I can tell.
This makes it okay in your eyes, correct.
Also, the only people eligible to market GVO after purchasing there are those who purchase reseller hosting.
Anybody buying the Personal, Business, or Enterprise Hosting plans are considered customers in our back office.
So if HTP would let customers sign up without a referrer, that would make it okay by you, right? How about if they had an option on signup that a customer could check if they were interested in the marketing side of things?
BTW, I just realized I may have to revisit this with you when the new HTP site is launched. I’m not sure if it will still require a sponsor be entered or not.
Let’s not. This review is about HostThenProfit, not GVO as an opportunity (I haven’t looked into if one exists).
If it’s a series virtual product(s) made available upon monthly membership subscription then your are purchasing membership.
That would put the company in direct competition with it’s affiliates, so no. The issue isn’t generating commissions of a sale, whether the company acquires a customer or an affiliate does, commissions are still paid out.
The issue is if you can’t sell the products to non-members unable to participate in the compensation plan side of things, thus constituting a true retail sale.
With membership being sold with HostThenProfit and not products, this becomes a red flag when you can’t sell anything to non-members.
So if HTP had an opportunity site and a retail site where the customer could not participate in the marketing plan, that would work for you?
And would it matter if the price points were the same for either?
Members would have to be able to sell subscription to the products individually to non-members (earning a commission on this is fine). Those non-member retail customers would not be able to participate in the compensation plan unless they formally joined the company and became an affiliate.
This not only verifies the viability of the product offering but clearly seperates retail customers and company affiliates.
If the company itself chooses to have a retail site, that’s irrelevant as far as affiliates go if that is not how they themselves are selling the product.
Eg. HostThenProfit having a seperate retail site allowing customers to purchase individual subscriptions to services has no relevance if HostThenProfit members are only able to market membership to the company which provides access to a series of subscription-based services.
Yep. What I was saying was if we as reps were provided a retail site in addition to an opportunity site.
The retail site being geared towards customers that would be interested in a bundled offering like HTP, but not interested in promoting the opportunity.
If people who purchased the bundle were unable to participate in the compensation plan, then I don’t see any problems with that.
They’re demonstarting demand and viability for their product as, without the compensation plan attached, there’s no other motivating factor for them to make the purchase other than seeing value in the products themselves.
I certainly wouldn’t mind having a straight up retail site to market. I had that with an old telecom company called Cognigen. That let me just acquire customers that weren’t reps.
Thanks for your time oz.
No worries. One of the other benefits of retail sales is that it allows you to gain a better picture of the viability of the overall business.
If most of the sales are members signing up and there’s hardly and retail customers there might not be enough value in the product itself to justify it’s place in the market. By not offering a true retail option there’s no way of knowing and recruitment for the sake of recruitment commissions is effectively masked (which might be by design or an unintended side-effect).
I think the owner is trying to take his company a bit more mainstream. The redesigned HTP is supposed to go up against sites like Bluehost and the new GVO site is designed to go against sites like Hostgator.
I’m personally more into traditional affiliate marketing, so I’m glad they appear to be doing some things geared towards retail.