How Zeek Rewards is marketed to new affiliates
When Zeek Rewards launched in early 2011, the company did so guaranteeing a 125% ROI on any VIP bids purchased by members.
Effectively you invested $x into the company and the company then guaranteed you a return of $x times 1.25.
In Mid 2011 Zeek Rewards removed this guarantee and shifted the compensation structure to a return paid out over a rolling 90 day period.
Although Zeek Rewards got rid of the 125% ROI guarantee, it is still generally accepted that in order for the profit-sharing side of the business to work, there still remains an unspoken ROI guarantee in effect.
This guarantee exists on the sole reasoning that nobody would invest in VIP bids to convert into bids if they weren’t earning more than a 100% return on their initial investment in bids after 90 days (and 90 days rolling after the initial 90 days has passed).
Despite being heavily advertised as a passive investment scheme for a year (buy bids, buy customers from Zeek Rewards, give bids away to the company rather than customers, publish daily ads and earn a ROI over 90 days), in January 2012 Zeek Rewards announced it would be rolling out a compliance course.
Additionally the company announced bans on its members using investment terminology to market and describe the Zeek Rewards business opportunity.
This was done because starting April, the company would no longer be selling customers to members, thus believing this meant Zeek Rewards was no longer a passive investment opportunity.
This despite the fact that the fundamental concept of the purchase of bids and the Zeek Rewards still paying out a 90 day ROI on bids converted to points remaining intact.
Despite announcing their compliance course in January, to date nothing has been released.
Zeek Rewards are seemingly satisfied that ordering their members to stop using investment terminology, without actually changing the business model is compliance enough.
And publicly their members have for the most part complied. But what about behind the scenes?
When we dive into the nuts and bolts of how Zeek Rewards is being marketed and described by its members, has anything really changed?
Since the compliance announcements were made in January I’ve had various people contact me who have had the Zeek Rewards opportunity explained to them.
Universally, this involves breaking Zeek Rewards down into an investment opportunity with investment return projections to lure them into investing themselves.
The following is an analysis of the most recent example I’ve had sent to me, just last week. The sales pitch is contained in an email dated 24th February, 2012 and opens as follows:
Remember Zeek is not a “get rich quick” program, however due to it’s systematic method of growing it can become VERY NICE AMOUNT in a year or longer depending on how much you want it to grow verses how many bids you purchase up front.
Defining Zeek Rewards not as a “get rich quick” program but rather a “get rich slow” program (it takes over a year of re-investment), the opening paragraph of the sales pitch essentially describes an investment scheme that takes over a year to deliver viable returns that can be withdrawn.
Of course as per Zeek Rewards compliance the term “investment” isn’t used, with the members instead explaining that sizeable returns are dependant on ‘how much you want it (your invested point balance) to grow verses how many bids you purchase up front‘.
Quite obviously product purchases don’t “grow” so the bids being purchased upfront is the investment here.
The sales pitch contunues:
Number one Zeek is a business, you are buying bids, you are selling bids, you are giving bids away.
This is true and I can’t argue with it. Bid being purchased by members equate to investments. Once given away, these bids convert to points and generate a 90 day ROI. Product purchases don’t deliver ROIs, investments do.
Members purchasing bids is legit, provided of course actual customers are purchasing the bids and not just dummy accounts a Zeek Rewards member has set up to make the most out of their investment into the scheme (via the purchase of retail bids).
As for giving bids away, that in itself doesn’t contribute to member commissions.
The money for the bids has already been paid to Zeek and as such they have capital to pay out ROIs. Whether the bids are given away or not contributes insignificantly to the daily ROIs paid out.
With Zeek if you post the simple ad each day, you are quilified (sic) to enter the “Retail Profit Pool” of money which is figured at the end of the day for the percent your current level in increased by.
It averages 1.4 per day usually not less than 1.25 and many times over 2.0. This is why we are receiving $500+ dollars per day 3-4 days a week and $200_ on other days of the same week.
Week days are surprisingly higher than weekends.
Equating the daily requirement to publish ads as qualification, rather than contributing anything of significance to the commissions structure, the sales pitch then goes on to bait the prospect with the average ROIs paid out.
Amusingly even members of Zeek Rewards admit the suspicious nature of Zeek Rewards paying out higher ROIs during weekdays than on weekends.
Logically if the majority of profit was coming from the penny auctions over at Zeekler, the returns should be higher on the weekends when people have more time to participate.
Of course if the money is being pumped into the profit-share is just coming from investments in VIP bids, during the week people are more likely to be investing money as this is when banks are open and people take go about their financial business matters.
This perfectly explains the abnormality in ROI payouts, yet is often ignored by those claiming Zeekler is a cash cow and bankrolling the Zeek Rewards ROI daily payouts.
Even if you start at silver $10.00 per month fee and purchare $100.00 worth of bids 100.00 in 90 days is 200, 90 more 400, 90 more 800, 90 more 1600.
That’s a year in another 4 90 day time period $25600. 2 years see blow with your $100 start
total cost you put in $100.00 plus ($10.00 per month 24=$240.) $240.00 = $340.00 and you make atleast $25,600, is this clear?
Crystal clear. I
invest “put in” $100, pay a $10 monthly membership fee equating to $240 and if I re-invest my daily ROI for a year have made $25,600!
Let it get high enough where you take 10-20% out per month, the other 90 to 80- keeps growing….you now have a new way of life or a grand retirement plan because of just $340.00.
Course if you purchase more it would be a lot higher.
If you replaced “purchase” with “investment” above, does it read any different?
Nevermind the fact that what we’re actually talking about is 25,600 VIP points, rather than actual dollars (points are virtual currency used to calculate your daily ROI amount. They hold no value outside of the Zeek Rewards investment scheme).
Using average ROIs, the sales pitch then projects to new members what would happen if they invested $1000 into the scheme:
Lets bump it up a nothc (sic) or two for those who may be fortunate to have more to start with:
And then finally, projects the maximum projected ROI paid out off a $10,000 investment (the maximum investment amount allowed per member):
Bigger even to the Max amount you caan start with:
Yes we are talking about 2 Million in 2 years, now take 10-20% out per month for the rest of your life….every month, I think you could survice (sic) on that!
“I sure could!” is what the prospect is naturally supposed to state at this point, before running off to the Zeek Rewards website and investing their $10,000 to get started.
2 million dollars in 2 years? Why the hell wouldn’t you invest with Zeek Rewards?!
As you can see, despite the start of the sales pitch (which really reads like an annoying compulsory disclaimer), at the end of the day projected returns based on initial investments by members is what is still being marketed.
If you are trying to build a big mound of dirt are you going to use a steamshovel or a spoon, the amount makes a big difference.
Simply put, the more you
invest in buy into Zeek Rewards, the higher your return and the sooner you can hit that holy grail (yet unsustainable if everybody reaches it) 80/20% ROI withdrawal amount.
How anybody can construe the above as anything but a sales pitch for an investment scheme is beyond me. When was the last time someone tried to convince you to purchase and sell goods based on projected 2 year ROIs?
It just doesn’t make sense.
Well it does if we cut the crap and acknowledge that mechanically Zeek Rewards is and always has been used by their members as nothing more than an investment scheme.
I could of course forward the above sales pitch along with all email addresses involved to Zeek Rewards and they’d no doubt terminate accounts and pat themselves on the back for another compliance success story.
But is anything detailed in the sales pitch actually inaccurate? Apart from perhaps over or underestimating averages, not as far as I can see.
Sure giving points away and blah blah blah is not mentioned, but the basic idea of you put money in and earn a ROI is as true as it is presented.
Dated late February 2012, no doubt some people might be inclined to suggest that the above sales pitch is outdated and couldn’t possibly be how Zeek Rewards members are still marketing the opportunity today.
So how about a more recent example, as recent as say three days ago.
Troy Dooly over at MLM Help Desk was invited to Zeek Rewards’ “Red Carpet” event held in North Carolina last Wednesday in order to cover and report on the event.
A few hours ago Dooly spoke on the radio show ‘Aces Radio Live‘ and gave listeners a taste of what was to come in the following weeks.
The complete broadcast runs in at 75 minutes (Troy Dooly starts talking about Zeek Rewards at around the 37 minute mark), so to keep things simple I’ve extracted the relevant audio where Troy states how a member of Zeek Rewards described the opportunity to him:
To put the above audio into context, Troy arrives at Zeek Rewards for a corporate event three days ago and, despite all the ‘we are not an investment scheme and you can’t use the terminology’ compliance talk since January, finds Zeek Rewards members declaring how happy they are with the return they’ve earnt after investing money into Zeek.
One can only imagine how the Zeek Rewards member that approached Dooly markets Zeek Rewards to prospects.
That is of course if he or she isn’t just treating Zeek Rewards as a passive investment scheme and buying customers from third party vendors to dump VIP bids onto.
Dooly states that rather than the Zeek Rewards business model and the company itself, it is the members alone who will make or break the company.
Be that as it may (but rather due to the fact that without member investments Zeek Rewards collapses as opposed to calling it an investment scheme), can you really blame members?
At the end of the day as demonstrated above the simplest way to market Zeek Rewards is to drop the whole compliance charade and market it for what it is, an investment scheme.
No other business model pays out ROIs nor requires members to continually invest and re-invest their earnings into the scheme in order to earn commissions.
Yes in other business you have business expenses but typical business expenses aren’t governed by 90 day ROI mechanics.
Since its conception Zeek Rewards has operated as an investment scheme and it’s only logical that, despite what the company claims, its members are going to refer and market it as such.
If I’m trying to sell a car, the makers can call it whatever they want. A tree, a chicken, a hot-air balloon – it really doesn’t matter.
I’m still trying to sell a car and no amount of ‘you can’t say this’ and ‘don’t refer to the car as a car’ is going to change that.
Footnote: I did think Dooly’s stance on not holding Zeek Rewards accountable for their business scheme (“It’s not gunna be Paul Burks, or Dawn Olivares, or Alex, or John, or any of the guys at home office who are going to make or break this company” (44:00)), was initially a bit odd, seeing as the members themselves didn’t come up with Zeek Rewards’ business model.
68 minutes into the Aces Radio call (click the previous “Aces Radio Live” link to load up the full show) however, Dooly mentioned that he’s “decided to make a commitment to this company (Zeek Rewards)”.
This commitment involves flying out to Zeek Rewards once a month for their VIP Wednesdays, and assisting with the training of Zeek Rewards members in compliance (which pretty much boils down to ‘don’t use the word investment when talking about Zeek Rewards’).
Of course this commitment will no doubt have a financial side to it.
So despite looking forward to Dooly’s yet to be published information on last Wednesday, a financial relationship between Dooly and Zeek Rewards and any potential conflict of interests that arise as such will be hard to ignore.
Of course I’ll continue to give Dooly the benefit of the doubt and I’m not suggesting otherwise in noting any such financial agreement between himself and Zeek Rewards.
How Dooly handles any potential conflict of interests that arise between what he reports and his work over at Zeek Rewards will be up to him to work out.
I’m sure going forward that whatever happens, I won’t be the only one keeping a close eye on any developments.