I have wonderful memories of sitting at the kitchen table helping my mother write hundreds of cards for every holiday or special event. If you remember something like this too, then you might be attracted to this particular company which is different from all those beauty, supplement and nutritional products out there. So, what is Send Out Cards? Is this MLM worth a look?
I am not associated with Send Out Cards as a distributor or in any other way. My job is to research potential online business opportunities for you and report back to you on my findings. I need to generate income in my retirement and perhaps you do too. What I don’t want is for you to invest a bunch of money that you worked so long and hard for, only to find that it was, at best, minimally successful for you and at worst, a scam.
Please join me as we find out more.
What is Send Out Cards?
Send Out Cards is a multi-level marketing business but it is quite unique in that it sells greeting cards and gifts. In my research, this is the only MLM that is in this particular niche. As an affiliate, you can earn commission via retail sales and by recruiting others into a downline on your team.
Who Is Send Out Cards For?
Send Out Cards is not a full-time business opportunity so it could be appealing to those of us in retirement who would like to generate some side income. But beware! The earning potential is very low. This is a high-volume business and you had better have a lot of family/friends and a huge inner circle to recruit in order to see any kind of decent return on this.
It is more suited to people with regular jobs or a small business who just want to send cards/small gifts to business associates on a regular basis and for networking purposes to generate goodwill.
Brief Details and Price
owner/founder: Kody Bateman
price to join and what’s included:
$59.00 annual fee plus a $17.00, $37.00 and $97.00 monthly subscriptions plans
There is also an additional $395.00 add-on package which you will need to purchase if you want to scheduled card delivery. You need to be on one of the above subscription plans to purchase this package, which includes:
- 300 system cards (postage not included)
- 12 months of usage
- unlimited access to campaigns
- marketing materials
guarantee: there is no income guarantee
rating (out of 10): 3.3
My Review of Send Out Cards
Based in Salt Lake City, Utah, Send Out Cards was founded by Kody Bateman in 2003. Mr. Bateman has written books on ‘Relationship Marketing’ and is a well-known figure in the network marketing circle.
There are two types of cards:
- heartfelt – this is a card with a unique heartfelt message that is sent immediately
- system card send – this includes a single card to multiple recipients or a scheduled card send to one or more recipients or a card campaign (these are time-sensitive)
You can choose a pre-designed card or customize one yourself with the Send Out Cards app. When you have created what you want, SOC will print it, stuff it into the envelope, stamp it and send it. They also have gifts that you can include when you send cards such as:
- chocolate covered strawberries
- flower bouquets
- teddy bears
how it works when you join
First, you need a Send Out Cards Sponsor to introduce you to the company, then pay your annual renewal fee of $59.00, then choose your monthly plan option. You will additionally need to purchase the $395.00 package if you want access to your own replicated website and a back office to run your business.
- Referral Partner (distributor)
- Senior Manager
- Senior Executive
There are set criteria to meet in order to qualify for each of these ranks in which sales must be met both with PCV or Personal and Customer Volume and GV, or Group Volume.
When you join as a Referral partner, at the entry-level, you are attached, or ‘coded’ to the person who first sponsored you in the company. In other words, you inherit the coding of your sponsor, which could be any of the above-listed ranks (except Referral Partner, which is entry-level).
The Send Out Cards compensation plan is very complicated, which is typical of these MLM’s. What I found amusing is that one of their top people who does training to explain the plan said “You do not need to be able to explain this [compensation plan] to build a successful Send Out Cards organization.” So, you are not even expected to understand the whole compensation plan when you join, nor be able to explain it to potential recruits!
I will give you an overview of the plan:
SOC utilizes a Coded Unilevel, Stair Step breakaway compensation plan. This means that you can have as many as you can recruit on your team in your downline. Those recruits can only purchase directly from you, from either personal sales or selling to others. Once your recruit reaches a certain rank level, they can “break away” from you and can purchase directly from the company.
When one of those recruits breaks away, you lose that ‘leg’ and the commissions from his/her sales. You may still receive some override commission from legs that have broken away from you but usually it is less than the commission you had been taking previously. The downside with this is that this could encourage you to focus on recruiting as many people (or legs) as you can and discourage them from breaking away from you.
So as you can see, in the Unilevel model, you can recruit as many legs as you want but they can only go to a certain depth level. The Unilevel format encourages you to recruit a large number of people who then also recruit a large number of people and so on and so on.
In the case of Send Out Cards, you get paid on volume. Therefore, the number of purchases made in your organization will determine how fast you get promoted up the ranks. You must achieve all the requirements of your current rank before you can advance up to the next level.
You are paid on commissionable volume which includes:
- customer direct retail profits – you sell your service directly to customers in the form of cards or a gift and collect the money directly from that customer
Not commissionable to you is:
- gift cards
A very peculiar fact when you are an affiliate for Send Out Cards is that you are not allowed to promote the products unless it is from the replicated website. This means that if you have your own business already, you cannot sell from your own website. I find this very constraining if you are trying to build out your SOC business.
income disclosure statement
Here is the Send Out Cards 2017 income disclosure statement and you can see for yourself how little you would earn and how long it takes to even make that small income.
Looking at this chart, you can see that over 61% of affiliates in Send Out Cards made $10.00 or less, and that was after being in business an average of 57 months?
The only people really making any money are those in the top 1% of the MLM pyramid, which is always the case, and even they have been working that business for a very long time. 13 years for the top earners.
Well, I don’t know about you but I haven’t got that much time to wait to see a return on my investment in an online business.
But don’t just take my word for it on the high failure rate of multi-level marketing opportunities. You can read this document from the Consumer Awareness Institute and learn more.
Pros and Cons
- unique greeting card business
- conveys positivity and nostalgia
- could be helpful to the small business owner
- very low-income potential
- the MLM business model is flawed
- promotional constraints
Final Thoughts About Send Out Cards
I still think a card that has been hand-written and signed by you personally is still the most sincere and authentic way to communicate via the old fashioned way. I think it is a little impersonal that your signature is copied and then stamped on the cards you send. Just not the same impact. However, if you have a business and want to send out cards/gifts to say thank you or for special occaisons, this may be of interest to you. So, maybe this MLM is worth a look to you based on that criteria.
However, as someone who is semi or completely retired, I really don’t think this is a good income opportunity. It could take you many, many years to see any residual income with this business model. The income disclosure for SOC shows you this!
In fact, I would advise you to be very wary of this, or any other online business, especially multi-level marketing. I have created a checklist just for this purpose to help you determine if you are the right ‘fit’ to be a multi-level marketer.
There Is A Better Alternative
If you enjoy cards and gifts and the idea of selling them online from your own website is attractive to you, why not take a look at what we do? When you become an Affiliate Marketer, you are not beholden to one company that is restricting you as to how to sell your items. You can choose to work with any company that has an affiliate program! You are in charge of yourself and your own business and you don’t have to hassle family and friends to join you on your ‘team’.
Philip and I looked carefully at the multi-level marketing business model as well as everything else out there when we were needing to find a way to generate income in our retirement. MLM was not for us at all and it is not a business we would ever do. When we found our number one recommended company, called Wealthy Affiliate, we realized that for a very reasonable fee, we could learn how to become online entrepreneurs and have the freedom to do what we wanted to do.
This friendly Canadian company has been around for over 14 years and has a wealth of online training, tools, support and everything else you need to learn how to start your own website and be successful with it. This is not a get rich quick system but rather an authentic step-by-step training program that takes you from the basics right through to advanced lessons. There is also a huge, global community of like-minded folks who are happy to help you and share their knowledge. Wealthy Affiliate is a very special place.
What impressed us was that we were able to enter the platform and check it out for FREE and we invite you to do the same. There is no pressure and no hassle.
We hope you will come in and take a look.
Wishing you every success,