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Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme?

You are researching MLM companies? Especially, you would like to find out more about Team National I believe.

I know many people have this idea of joining the MLM because of the side money they can make or maybe even a full-time income they might earn.

Team National does not have a tangible product you can try to sell but they offer a kind of assistance for their members.
To be more precise, members of Team National can save money when paying for a particular product or service.

Seems a bit dodgy to you?
Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme?

Well, let’s take a look at this company a bit deeper.
We will be looking at the positives and also some negative aspects. This is going to unbiased review since I am not part of this network marketing company.

Team National (TN) has been founded in 1997 but as an MLM it started to operate in 1999. Its headquarters is in Davie Florida and according to the website glassdoor.com, it has somewhere from 50 to 200 employees.

According to their Income Earnings Disclosure 2018, they have more than 35,000 Independent Marketing Directors (IMD), in other words, salespeople.

Besides the saving, TN also offers its marketing program, which we will talk about in a minute. The bottom line is though, that the majority of members do not make any money, in fact, most of them lose their money.

Please note, that I am not a member or an affiliate of Team National.

This review is based on research and information available online in the public domain.
Any recommendations and conclusions are only opinions and may not apply to all persons or situations.

Team National Overview

Name: Team National
Revenue: $734.5 million (2018 source)
Website: www.bign.com (the website is not available in the EU – except in the UK)
Price to Join:
$795 – $2915 (Additional Fees May Apply)

Is Team National a legit MLM Company or a Pyramid Scheme?

Pyramide schemes are not legal.
As a general rule, a company does need to go to court before it can be officially called a pyramid scheme.

For a further explanation please check the video to learn about the difference.

Since TN has been around since 1997 we can say officially that it is not a pyramid scheme.

Obviously, there are companies out there, where it is not that easy to spot the difference. 
Generally speaking, if a company uses illegal methods, it gets shut down within 2 years or so.

We have seen that TN is not the case.

But why people are so concerned about whether it is a pyramid scheme or a scam? There must be something to it, right?

Well, the thing is that when they recruit people they say all the superior stuff and saving plans and how much value they bring to the community…

Theoretically, they don’t lie, but practically it hardly works for the majority.

The reality is that more than 80% of their members (that is almost 30,000 members) make less than $5,000 a year (that is less than 100 bucks a week).

So if you think about joining the Team National, you should really think about that twice before joining.

In my opinion, it is just not a good business opportunity.

What is Team National?

Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme

Team National is a membership savings company that has been founded in 1996 by Dick Loehr, who was a successful racer and captain of the Ford Drag Team.

At the beginning of 1990, he operated 9 restaurants.
Eventually, he developed a company that would provide benefits to consumers.
It is called membership savings.

Since 2007 his daughter, Angela Loehr Chrysler, has overtaken the company and she is currently the CEO and President of TN.

Team National offers saving opportunities for its members such as cash rebates and a variety of discounts. It is a member of the Direct Selling Association (DSA).

New members can join through a person who is already a member – the IMD (Independent Marketing Director) and the minimum age for joining are 18.

Products, That Team National Offers

Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme

Finally, we are getting to the products that TN offers to its members.

The way the TN works is that they negotiate with brand companies to lower prices, utilizing the group buying power. The company provides a large number of savings and value-added services in 4 main areas:

  • Group buying power – TN helps people to save on items such as home and life insurance, automobiles, jewelry, and so on.
  • Factory-direct pricing – provides savings on flooring, mattresses, grills…
  • Business services – Business owners can save on payment processing, legal solutions, and other benefits
  • Rebate programs – Cashback from many retailers, from household goods, shoes, clothing, electronics, etc.

As we have seen above, these are not directly products distributed by the company. Team National offers different products and services with a discount on them.
According to the company, these discounts can be as high as 65% per item.

Based on the reviews some members are quite happy with the discount.
Although people with an average income visit stores like for example, IKEA where they can get stuff for a reasonable price.

Others say that prices are not that different whether purchasing directly at the store or through the TN membership.

The reality is that for most physical products the rebate is about 5 to 10%.
(You can basically get a discount even if you are not a member of TN – just simply ask the store manager and in most cases, you will get 10% off.)

The other problem with this rebate is that it usually takes up to 3 months to get your cashback. (TN needs to wait for that commission and after that, it is transferred to your account).

How Can You Make Money with Team National? – TN savings – Compensation Plan

Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme

We have mentioned the saving. That could be also a way how to earn money – indirectly.

So there are basically these two options:

  1. IMD (Independent Marketing Director)
  2. Members Only

We are going to break down the 1st option – the IMD, here.

As a member of TN can you actually earn money, by “sharing the concept with others” – that is basically selling the idea to your family members and friends.
This position is called the IMD – Independent Marketing Director (salesperson).

There are 2 different memberships:

  1. Standard Membership – this costs $795. It is valid for 2 years and the saving applies to your household (from grandparents to your grandchildren)
  2. Premium Membership – this costs $2195. This is a lifetime membership. It’s a one-time fee and it covers your household as the one above and on top of it (if you own a business) it can be shared with 5 employees.
Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme

Now, you can recruit another person to join your team, and based on the membership he chooses, you receive points.

  • For a person who joins the Standard Membership, you receive 1 point
  • For a person who joins the Premium Membership, you receive 3 points

They used to have a video available on YouTube to show how the compensation plan works, but it is not available anymore due to a copyright claim by Team National.

But basically, it is about you as a business center recruiting other people into your team, and depends on the membership they choose, you receive points.
Based on the number of points you get a commission.
(I believe that person on the picture above with 20 points can get about $2,000  – maybe a little bit more).

It sounds great and easy;
But I would like to ask you to imagine that you go to your neighbor or a certain family member and ask him or her to join your team for $795  (or $2,195). Do you think that person would agree? Even if you reveal all the “bonuses”?

Let alone this person would go on and hire others… Practically it works only for few people.

In fact, let’s take a look at the income reports for 2018.

Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme

There were 35,511 members in 2018.

Let’s take at the percentage of distributors who make some decent money. In case we take into account the column with High earnings I think it is safe to say that the “Presidential” level starts to be interesting, and above.
That means that less than 6% make a decent living.

Now we will take a look at another interesting fact and thus the number of IMDs in 2016:

Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme

– Two years earlier in 2016, the number of members was 48,494.
That means that from 2016 to 2018 the total number of distributors is at least 25% smaller.

We can only guess why it is so.

Team National Pros and Cons

  • Team National is an established company operating for more than 20 years. It is a member of the Direct Selling Association
  • For some, it can be a prestigious thing being a member of such a community with the potential of saving money
  • The number of members has been decreasing over the last 2 or 3 years. ( People probably find better deals online)
  • The membership is expensive and many people do get that amount of money back as a result of savings
  • To make some money as the IMD, one must recruit family members, friends, neighbors. This may work only for a small percentage of people (as per the Income report)
  • The compensation plan is not straightforward. It may confuse lots of people who are interested in joining the TN.

Some Thoughts at the End

If your goal is to join a Team National as an IMD become an entrepreneur, then my suggestion would be for you to reconsider that move.

You have seen the majority of IMDs do not make enough to pay the checks, so they must keep their jobs.
Or maybe the members are already retired and just enjoying that part of being a part of that community and they don’t mind paying for the membership.

Have you thought about other ways to make money?
I mean there are a lot of opportunities out there and with the internet, you have also a chance to create your own blog and learn how to monetize it.

Or, you may be heard about affiliate marketing.

In a nutshell, let’s take a look at Amazon.

Amazon offers tons of products, but usually, people do not go directly to Amazon and just buy this or that.

People are more careful these days and they want to know more about products.
They search for them, they read reviews and opinions and eventually they go to Amazon and purchase the item.

Depending on your hobby, you can create a certain website, let’s say about fishing equipment or Coffe Makers, and write reviews about these products.
You can go to the store, ask the sales manager about the details, then go home and you have material to write about.

If you are honest and you do recommend the best products, you will become an online authority within your niche.
The number of visitors can grow and you can have a full-time income within a year or 16 months.

Some folks are “complaining” about writing a review, they don’t know how to do that.

But these very same guys do not have a problem talking about that product with their friends or family members.
-writing an honest review is the same thing as if they talk about that.

This Might Be a Better Alternative

Is Team National a Pyramid Scheme

I don’t know about you but I am not a fan of this business structure. If you don’t mind the drawbacks we have listed above, then, by all means, go ahead and join the TN.

To me, it reminds me of times when I was at university. I have joined one company selling insurance and stuff like that – basically I was acting as a financial advisor. (I say acting on purpose since 2 hours of training does make anyone an “advisor”).
I had to call people to schedule a meeting with them and then ask them if they know 2 people to whom I can give these recommendations and eventually joining our team as well…

Well, again I met people who enjoyed that job, but I hated it. Calling people and convincing them about joining this company, which I did not trust made me anxious.

I prefer a business model where people approach you for something they truly want. For example, they ask me how did I build this website.
How much did it cost me?

They are genuinely interested in how to rank in google and how they can do that too.

Well to be in that position, first you need to learn it by yourself. You need to have experience and that requires time and effort.

I wanted to do it on my own, but that was a dead end. I couldn’t figure out all the necessary steps on my own.
Fortunately, I have found a platform where I have learned what steps to take.

That training I have taken is really thorough and never seen anything like that, anywhere. Since it is also for beginners, the first few lessons took me only a few hours.

Well, I think it is up to you to decide which way to go – whether it will be an MLM company, or you try this new path of internet marketing.

If you are not sure about your next steps and you have questions, please leave it in the comment section below.
I will do my best to answer you within 24 hours.

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