Direct seller encourages bathing with goat’s milk
Product is the key in direct selling. Without a strong product, it might be called pyramiding, says Lina Jacob, a veteran in the direct selling business.
Jacob, a 53-year-old grandmother, has recently returned to the industry, after retiring last year as a top executive who handled some of the biggest brands in the direct selling business.
“There are a number of pyramiding businesses without a product,” Jacob says in an interview. “But this one, we are very proud that it is a very legitimate business.”
She is referring to The Real Deal & Great Stuff Company Inc., the Pasig City-based group which has recently clinched a deal to become the exclusive distributor in the Philippines of The Cream Factory products.
“They got me to set up the direct selling business. I was in the direct selling business for 25 years. I was with Avon for six years, with Tupperware for 17 years and with Herbalife for two years,” says Jacob, the general manager of The Real Deal.
Prior to establishing The Real Deal, Jacob was the country manager of Herbalife Philippines, the local unit of the US multi-level marketing corporation that develops, markets and sells nutrition supplements, weight management and personal-care products.
When her colleagues in the industry learned that Jacob established a new company, they asked what encouraged her to return to the industry, after retirement. “They said, why were you planning to go back to your career, you’re already retired,” she says.
“Before I got this job, I had to tell them that I would not waste my 25 years in direct selling if this is not a good brand,” Jacob says, referring to The Cream Factory, the US brand of bath cream and scrub made of goat’s milk from the Netherlands.
“Real Deal is the name of the direct selling company that we set up. It is the exclusive distributor of The Cream Factory in the Philippines. These products are manufactured in California. It is a US brand. Another brand is Saforelle from France, an intimate feminine wash,” she says.
Jacob says The Cream Factory products excel in the market, because they are made of goat’s milk, the ancient secret to beauty linked to Egypt’s Queen Cleopatra.
“It is an ancient secret of Cleopatra. It is also known that foreign and local celebrities use goat’s milk in their bath. They say goat’s milk is only for the rich. It is not true. That’s why we have The Cream Factory bath cream and scrub,” says Jacob.
She says goat’s milk keeps skin soft, supple and moisturized. It also nourishes, heals and repairs skin, while helping to protect it from damage and early signs of aging, she says. Jacob says real Netherlands goat’s milk is prized for purity and quality.
“It is 100-percent goat’s milk from the Netherlands. It is pure in terms of vitamins, minerals and nutrients that are needed by the body. It is dessert for the skin,” she says.
Jacob says The Cream Factory is a premium line of bath and body products made with real Netherlands goat’s milk and 100-percent active botanical ingredients sourced from around the world. It has a number of variants that suit the skin type of each individual, she says.
“When I tried it, I was really amazed. Even my husband likes it. I am already a grandmother. I had to try it for myself. When I endorse something, I will not be staying long with these companies if the product is not effective... Everything in direct selling is from the heart. People will trust you because you have been sincere in endorsing to them a very good product,” says Jacob.
She says The Cream Factory products used to be available in retail outlets, but the US company chose to team up with a direct selling partner in the Philippines to effectively promote the products’ benefits.
“Direct selling is about personalized service. The member talks about the product in details. She does the demo. She makes a follow up. She greets you and reminds you about promos. She will even deliver the product to your doorsteps,” says Jacob.
Jacob says direct selling also generates jobs for both men and women. “Once you use it, it will open the doors for business opportunities. That’s the real deal now,” she says. “Once you are a user, your friends will take notice and will most likely order from you. It becomes an earning opportunity then.”
The quality of the product is what sustains the business, she says. “In this business, you have to build trust. It is based on trust. We choose good quality recruits who love the products. I have never talked to members who joined just because they felt pressured,” she says.
Jacob says The Real Deal was officially launched as a company in August 2015, but “we started creating noise as early as May.”
“The owners of the company feel that it is about time that even if we are a Third World country, we should open our eyes and change the way we feel about bath. We are the only country in the world who still use bar soap. Why not try the liquid soap, and not only the liquid soap, but goat’s milk as well for a change.”
Jacob says The Real Deal currently has 138 active members in Metro Manila, three in Bicol region and one in the Visayas. “Our members are not the traditional direct sellers. These are new blood, who just love the brand. It is a new level of direct selling experience.”
“The reason why we push it for direct selling is aside from personal touch, we also want to help the entrepreneurs,” she says.
Jacob says members have the chance to avail of a 30-percent discount for products and earn an additional 5-percent commission for the sales of recruits down to the second level. “With this, we grow the market wider. It is not like the old mlm [multi-level marketing],” she says.
“Your story spreads to your friends. That’s how direct selling works. Once you try it, you don’t want to use another brand anymore,” she says.
Jacob says The Real Deal plans to introduce other world-class brands in the fourth quarter. “It’s all beauty and wellness products—all different,” she says.
She says the company has also embraced the technology and accepts members through online application. “Everything is now online. In the traditional setup, members will go to the office and line up for their orders. With us, if you want to order or sign up as a member, just go to our website [http://www.realdealgreatstuff.com] and place your order,” she says.
Jacob says unlike other direct selling companies, The Real Deal focuses on the “wow and fun experience,” without causing stress on the members in terms of sales quota. The company’s top seller so far, she says, is a typical housewife who sold P300,000 worth of products mostly to her friends in August.
“In direct selling, you enrich the lives of people. That’s the reason why I stayed this long in the industry. It is heart-warming when you see you have helped people become successful in life. It is gratifying,” says Jacob.