It should go without saying that we do our best to keep apprised of the goings-on in North-East India, a place near-and-dear to our hearts. (Yeah, we have multiple hearts—what of it?) We were thus chilled to learn recently that the esteemed province of Nagaland has been invaded by Mary Kay Cosmetics. And the grand-dame of multi-level marketing enterprises is taking no prisoners in its attempt to turn India’s tribal citizens onto the supposed wonders of the MelaCEP Whitening System:
“There are around 800 to 900 sales force members in Nagaland alone” stated Puneet Madan, Director of Sales Development. He said that it was not only Dimapur that was showing a positive response. Other districts of Nagaland as well such as Peren, Phek and Mokokchung were showing a tremendous interest in Mary Kay products, he said. Dave Grant, Vice President of Sales Development and education of Mary Kay Asia Pacific Region and other Mary Kay representatives were also present at the press conference.
If we assume a Nagaland sales force at the midpoint of Madan’s estimate, that means the province has one Mary Kay rep for every 2,352 citizens. In the U.S., by contrast, the figure is one for every 3,529 men, women, and children.
Suffice to say, we don’t think Mary Kay’s arrival should necessarily be hailed as a great advancement for the North-East. Quite the contrary, in fact—we consider ourselves great skeptics of the Mary Kay model, which seems far more concerned with making coin off starry-eyed “consultants” than actually moving product to customers. And if these figures are accurate, that certainly seems to be the case in India.
Plenty more on the Mark Kay business model here—we highly recommend the section that breaks down the math on those “free” cars.