Is Premier Designs a good opportunity? Premier Designs claims their business model is based on Biblical principles and puts people before profits. However, a closer look exposes something much different.
Is Premier Designs a Good Opportunity? Because Premier Designs does not provide “sufficient information to enable a reasonable evaluation of the opportunity to earn income,” as directed by the Direct Selling Association Code of Ethics, it is assumed that Premier Designs is NOT a good opportunity.
Premier Designs’ lack of transparency is troubling and suggests that most of their distributors, aka Jewelers, do not earn a profit.
In this article, I dig deep into Premier Designs and reveal what you need to know BEFORE you join.
Is Premier Designs a Good Opportunity?
Before investing your time and money into Premier Designs, it’s critical to investigate the company as thoroughly as possible. Although Premier Designs is a legitimate company, their business opportunity may not be right for you.
The prospect of making money and working for yourself is exciting. However, as with any business opportunity, you must conduct your own due diligence.
A wrong decision here might lead to humiliation, debt, and damaged relationships.
What Do You Want from Premier Designs?
Start with clarifying what you expect from Premier Designs.
Do you just want to buy jewelry? Or, do you want to make a few extra hundred dollars each month? Or do you want to earn enough money to live more comfortably?
Premier Designs Will Cost You.
If you decide to become a Premier Designs Jeweler, remember, you will be investing time and money. You may have to take time from other priorities like a spouse or child.
Any business opportunity carries the risk of losing your investment. Premier Designs is no different.
The one sure thing about the Premier Designs opportunity is it will cost you money. Starter kits cost $395 and $795.
Based on industry averages, there is more than a 90% chance you will NOT make money with the Premier Designs opportunity.
Think Like a Businessperson.
The Premier Designs websites has a lot of “feel good” marketing that targets your emotions. Clearly, Premier Designs is trying to get you to make an emotional decision and not a logical one.
Starting a business based on your feelings is a mistake.
Before you trust Premier Designs, I urge you to think like a businessperson.
The opportunity will cost you money. You must determine to your satisfaction if you can recoup your investment and earn a profit.
Marketers know we humans tend to make decisions based on our emotions and then later justify our decision with logic. They also know that if they can trigger your feelings, you cannot make a logical decision.
When your emotions kick in, it’s impossible to think logically. That part of our brains just turns off.
This is why the Premier Designs website constantly hammers on your emotional triggers.
Because Premier Designs is laser-focused on getting you to join, you must check your emotions at the door and think like a businessperson.
Before you give Premier Designs your money, you owe it to yourself to find out if you can make money with the opportunity.
That is the purpose of this article.
A Betrayal of Trust.
Before you can make a proper decision about the Premier Designs’ opportunity. You need to know three things.
- How much does it cost to work the business?
- How much does the average distributor (Jeweler) earn?
- Does Premier Designs buy back excess inventory?
As a member of the DSA, Premier Designs is required to publish this information and to have a buy-back policy in place.
You cannot find this information on the Premier Designs website. It isn’t there.
Without this information, there is no way of knowing how much you might earn or what it will take to be successful.
Premier Designs has been in business for 34 years. They know how much their Jewelers earn, and they know what it takes to succeed.
Why don’t they publish this information?
We cannot be sure why they are not sharing this information, but it might be because if you knew what the average Jeweler earned, or failed to earn, you would not join Premier Designs.
Premier Designs tactic of triggering your emotions without providing the information you need to make an informed decision is a betrayal of trust.
Is Premier Designs an MLM?
Premier Designs is an MLM that sells costume jewelry.
Costume jewelry is designed to wear with contemporary fashions and is usually made of inexpensive materials and imitation gems.
D&B Hoovers, a business database, reports Premier Designs is a privately owned “direct sales marketer” with over 26,000 independent distributors and generating more than $180 million in annual revenue.
Premier Designs appears to be a Multi-level Marketing company. However, nowhere on the Premier Designs website does it describe itself as an MLM.
It isn’t surprising that Premier Designs would avoid calling itself an MLM because the industry has a horrible reputation.
MLM is known for promising people a business opportunity, but only taking their money instead, often leaving them in debt.
Premier Designs is a member of DSA, a lobbying group for the MLM industry.
Premier Designs also has a profile on MLMlegal.com, a company that provides legal assistance to MLM companies.
Is Premier Designs a “Typical” MLM?
In a typical MLM, people are promised the chance to make money, but usually only lose money instead, often going into debt.
The typical MLM draws people into the business with a so-called business opportunity and insists they buy products before they can “qualify” to earn commissions and bonuses.
The lure of opportunity turns distributors into captured customers who ultimately spend more on products than they earn with their business. The end result is typically debt and humiliation.
Premier Designs is at least a little different from the typical MLM because it claims to be founded on “Biblical principles.” However, this claim may be nothing more than marketing designed to exploit the trust of genuine people of Faith.
Infinity Bible Church and Angola Prison
Premier Designs implies it supports ministries around the world. However, an online search revealed evidence of only two ministries supported by the company in the past 34 years. These are Infinity Bible Church in the Bronx and a ministry at Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola.
We do not know how much Premier Designs contributed to these ministries.
While we can appreciate Premier Designs’ support of Infinity Bible Church and ministries at the Angola prison, two ministries in 34 years is not supporting ministries around the world.
A company generating $180 million in annual revenue can do better.
If Premier Designs wants us to believe they support ministries around the world, they can provide the information we need to confirm their claim.
The Problem with MLM.
In the next few sections, I’m discussing the MLM industry in general and NOT Premier Designs.
Once you understand the industry and the average odds for success, you can anticipate your odds of success with Premier Designs.
MLM’s Bad Reputation.
The Multi-level Marketing industry has a dismal reputation for several reasons. The business is known for promising an opportunity but mostly delivering heartache and debt.
MLM has ruined countless relationships and families. Read The Heartbreak of MLM.
Usually, the promised opportunity is nothing more than a ploy to fool people into buying a lot of overpriced products.
The tactic of promising opportunity isn’t about helping someone make money. It’s about trapping them into a cycle of buying over-priced products month after month.
Information published on the Federal Trade Commission’s website shows that the typical MLM does NOT offer a genuine opportunity.
Promising opportunity is how an MLM can sell $3 worth of costume jewelry for $30.
Unfortunately, once a distributor buys into the illusion of opportunity and the dream of making money, they may continue to try to make the scheme work until they are broke, disillusioned and alienated from family and friends.
Most People Lose Money.
Most people who try an MLM opportunity lose money. Many of them will go into debt.
Information compiled on hundreds of MLMs and gathered over several decades shows that less than 1% of all distributors earn a profit (Source: MLM Abysmal Numbers).
Statistically, it’s easier to make money at a Blackjack table in Vegas.
A part-time, minimum wage job pays more than MLM.
Beware of Product Loading.
A common practice across the MLM industry is to load a new distributor with products. This is known as front-loading, product loading, or inventory loading.
Here’s how it works. When a distributor is first recruited and still starry-eyed, excited, and easily manipulated, they will be encouraged to buy an expensive starter kit.
Starter kits can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars. The expense is usually charged to a credit card.
Most distributors quit the business within a few months, and very few stay on after the first year. Product loading is a tactic MLM companies use to extract as much money out of a recruit as possible before they quit.
While product loading is very profitable for the company, it is incredibly destructive for the distributor who is left with a substantial credit card debt and products they can’t sell.
Ethical MLM companies protect their distributors from product loading by guaranteeing to buy back excess inventory. The Direct Selling Association Code of Ethics demands it.
The Insanity of the MLM Business Model.
Do you remember the story of how Tom Sawyer tricked his friends into paying him for the privilege of whitewashing a fence? That’s right, Tom Sawyer tricked his friends into paying him to do his chores.
Tricking someone into doing your chores might seem funny and a bit crazy, but that’s a lot like what an MLM company does to its distributors.
The typical MLM company promises you an opportunity but then charges you a fee for the privilege of selling their products and making the company money.
MLM is the only industry that does this. It’s why MLM is so lucrative for the people who own the company. The owners and a few top distributors at the top make a killing at the expense of the people on the bottom who go into debt.
There is no legitimate reason to pay a company for the privilege of buying and selling their products. Thousands of traditional companies will gladly pay YOU to sell their products!
This insane practice is an excellent example of the difference between the outdated MLM business model of the past century and the highly efficient business model of the 21st Century, Affiliate Marketing.
Affiliate marketers don’t pay the company. The company pays Affiliate Marketers!
To discover the many benefits of Affiliate Marketing, read Why Affiliate Marketing is Better than MLM.
Because the MLM business model exploits people with a false promise of opportunity, critics might claim an ethical MLM does not exist. That’s a valid point.
However, some MLM companies are more transparent than others.
In my opinion, an ethical MLM is one that follows the Direct Selling Association Code of Ethics and openly publishes all the information a prospect needs to make an informed decision, including;
- Income Disclosure Statement
- Compensation Plan
- Policies and Procedures
- The company’s buy-back policy.
A Closer Look at Premier Designs.
Now that we know more about the MLM industry and what an ethical MLM might look like (if such a thing exists), let’s take a closer look at Premier Designs.
Premier Designs’ Reputation.
The Better Business Bureau puts Premier Designs in the categories of Jewelry Stores, Business Opportunities, and Multi-Level Sales.
Premier Designs has been a member of the BBB since 1990 and has an A+ rating. However, this rating in no way reflects your chances of succeeding with Premier Designs.
There are lots of complaints about Premier Designs online.
A simple search will return plenty of complaints about the poor quality of the Premier Design products and the difficulty of making money with the opportunity.
There are four complaints on the BBB website, most are about the quality of the products. One is about trying to pay off the Premier Designs Jeweler Rewards Credit Card.
Three of the four complaints were resolved by Premier Designs.
RipOffReports.com has 10 Premier Designs complaints. Most are complaints about specific distributors, but some are about the company and the poor quality of the products.
Here’s an example of a complaint about the quality of the products.
I bought this jewelry at a party when it finally arrived, I gave it to my daughter for her birthday (28 years old not a child), I spent 78 dollars plus tax. It took all of 1 hour for the bracelet to break into pieces.
In the thread of complaints on RipOffReport.com, a commenter who claims to be a Premier Designs distributor describes the quality of the Premier jewelry like this;
Premier Designs jewelry is advertised as High Fashion jewelry. It is not of the highest quality. [It is] …a higher quality then the jewelry you could buy at a children’s store such as Claire’s, however, it is not as high quality as you will find at Kay or Jared’s. It is… glorified costume jewelry….
PissedConsumer.com has 46 complaints of Premier Designs. Most of the reviews claim the jewelry is over-priced and cheaply made.
It was embarrassing to go to a family reunion…and have family members tell me about their dissatisfaction with the jewelry I had sold them.
But some were about the opportunity, like this one.
Tried becoming a premier jewelry lady, don’t do it unless you are prepared to dedicate lots of time, money, and a LOT of failures to it.
This woman complains about the quality of the products and the opportunity. Two years later, she’s still paying off the debt she created for herself when she joined Premier Designs.
…the product is JUNK. I stopped selling (it) after realizing it was too expensive….It wasn’t about…the jewelry. It was about sucking in more people. 2 years later, (I’m) still paying off the initial investment. I wish I had done my research.
The above complaint is an example of product loading.
As a member of DSA, Premier Designs is required to buy back inventory from a distributor any time during their first 12 months with the company.
However, Premier Designs does not mention a buy-back policy anywhere on their website.
If the woman in the above complaint knew Premier Designs was required to buy back excess inventory, she would not have been saddled with a debt that took her two years to pay off.
Premier Designs failure to mention their obligation to buy back inventory is disingenuous on their part. It contradicts Premier Designs’ claim to put “people before profits.”
The following complaint found on PissedConsumer.com has some good advice from a woman who describes herself as a lawyer. She joined Premier Designs and regretted it.
…Google MLM or Premier designs jewelry complaints… you will get more than enough research [proving]…YOU WILL NOT MAKE MONEY!! This company scams people….
Because of the nature of Multi-level Marketing, there are a ton of complaints online about MLM in general and about specific companies.
Does Premier Designs Provide the Information We Need?
As a member of DSA, Premier Designs is obligated to follow the DSA Code of Ethics.
As published on the DSA website, the Direct Selling Association Code of Ethics states in Section 8, para b.3;
Current and prospective independent salespeople must be provided with sufficient information to enable a reasonable evaluation of the opportunity to earn income.
Premier Designs DOES NOT provide the information needed to reasonably evaluate their opportunity.
Premier Designs lack of transparency is troubling. Are they lying by omission?
This behavior is inconsistent with a company that claims to be founded on Biblical principles and to put people before profits.
To perform proper due diligence on this “opportunity,” we need to see an Income Disclosure showing the average earnings of Premier Designs Jewelers at all levels, a compensation plan, and a copy of the company’s policies and procedures.
These are not available on the Premier Designs website or anywhere else on the internet.
Without these essential documents, you have no way of knowing how much you can possibly earn, how long it may take to be profitable, or if the cost of the opportunity is worth it.
Premier Designs failure to provide necessary documentation on their opportunity is reason enough to avoid it.
Does Premier Designs Load Jewelers with Products?
You can join Premier Designs with your choice of two starter kits, the Simple Sparkle kit that costs $395 or the Luxe Launch kit that costs $795.
Both kits include products and business essentials.
Regardless of which kit you start with, you are paying the company for the privilege of selling their products and making the company a profit.
Does that make sense to you?
Both kits are expensive, but it gets worse.
If you qualify, you can purchase your starter kit with the Premier Designs Jeweler Rewards Card. The Card is interest-free for six months but then accrues interest at 29.24%!
By any definition, charging 29.24% interest is excessive and undoubtedly inconsistent with a company that claims to be based on Biblical principles and putting people before profits.
But, does Premier Designs load their Jewelers with products? That’s a matter of debate, but I think it does. For three reasons.
First, remember the complaint mentioned above where the woman said it took her two years to pay off her initial investment in Premier Designs?
She got stuck with inventory. That’s product loading.
Second, Premier Designs dodges the requirement to buy-back excessive inventory by failing to mention they are obligated to do so, effectively sticking their Jewelers with products and a credit card bill.
Third, they place a second layer of protection between the company and the recruit by getting them to charge the starter kit to a Premier Designs Jeweler Rewards Card. And they make interest on the purchase too.
Incidentally, if you buy the Luxe Launch Kit at $795 and charge it to the Premier Designs Jeweler Rewards Card, it will take over 5 years to pay it off at $25 a month.
In the process, you will have paid $753 in interest. Combined with the principle you would have spent over $1500 for some marketing materials and costume jewelry.
How in the world is driving people into debt a Biblical principle? It certainly isn’t putting people before profits.
Paying for the opportunity to sell Premier Designs products is insane. Going into debt for the privilege is tragic.
If you have fallen for this and are stuck with inventory, file a complaint with the Direct Selling Association. You may be able to get some of your money back.
How Much Will the Premier Designs Opportunity Cost?
Without seeing the company’s Compensation Plan and Policy and Procedures, we cannot be sure how much the opportunity will ultimately cost.
However, we do know it will cost at least $395.
Because Premier Designs does not publish an Income Disclosure Statement, we have no way of knowing how much the average Jeweler earns.
Since Premier Designs does not publish an Income Disclosure, we are forced to use the averages of the MLM industry as a guide.
According to information published on the Federal Trade Commission’s website, 99% of people who try to make money with an MLM opportunity LOSE MONEY.
Research across hundreds of different MLMs shows that less than 1% of the people who try MLM make a profit.
Less than 1% is just a bump above ZERO!
Remember, the cost of the Premier Designs opportunity is at least $395. The probability that you will make your money back is just a smidgen above a snowball’s chance in Hell.
Consider this, a first-time marriage has a 50% chance of success, a skillful Blackjack player has about a 52% chance of winning in Vegas, and the slot machines in Vegas pay out about 25% of the time.
I suspect the reason Premier Designs is hiding their Income Disclosure is that it’s no better than the industry average and might be worse. Worse than 1%?
If people knew how dismal their chance of success was with MLM, they would run the other way.
This is why MLMs have a reputation for selling false hope.
Is Premier Designs Right for You?
We began our Premier Designs journey with the question; What did you expect from Premier Designs?
We discovered that Premier Designs claims of being based on Biblical principles are questionable.
We discovered it would cost you at least $395 to try the Premier Designs opportunity and that your chances of making that money back were probably close to zero.
That means earning a part-time income or replacing your job by selling Premier Designs jewelry is probably impossible.
The Last Word on the Premier Designs Opportunity.
Contrary to the feel-good, Biblical themed marketing on the Premier Designs website, Multi-level Marketing just doesn’t work for most people.
The MLM business model is probably the worse business model to use if a company truly wanted to help people make money. Across the industry, there is less than a 1% chance of success.
Plus, inducing people into debt with a credit card that charges nearly 30% is exploitative.
MLM is an outdated business model created in the 1940s.
Back then, before most homes had a telephone, selling person to person made more sense. But, we’re in the 21st Century now. Most people have access to instant, global communications.
Perhaps the reason MLM is still here 80 years later is that it’s so lucrative for the people who own the company and a few distributors at the top of the sales force.
MLM companies make money because the distributors pay for the privilege of selling their products and then continue to buy products month after month.
With this arrangement, the company can’t lose, and the distributor can’t win.
Premier Designs is a typical MLM. And, as an MLM, the owners’ highest priority is to maximize profits. All the feel-good claims of Biblical principles and putting people first serve the bottom line.
Because Premier Designs does not publish the essential information required to properly evaluate the opportunity, it would be best to avoid it.
A Better Option.
We are nearly two decades into the 21st Century. The internet gives everyone access to the global marketplace and the potential for unlimited income.
If you want to make money, you can trade your time for it, or you can learn to leverage the internet to your advantage.
Why chase after your friends trying to sell them over-priced costume jewelry when you can build an online business that attracts customers 24/7?
It’s so much easier that way.
To discover the many advantages of Affiliate Marketing, Read Why Affiliate Marketing is Better than MLM.