Okay, let's cut straight to the chase and deal with the beautifully fragrant elephant in the room.
Something I’ve come up against quite a lot over the last year when it comes to talking about dōTERRA essential oils is the concept of ‘multi-level marketing’ (MLM), which seems to immediately conjure up all sorts of negative connotations and judgements about the product and sometimes by association, the person selling it. Don't feel bad, I felt exactly the same way when I first came across it. In fact, even after I fell in love with the oils, I still had a tough time with the idea of direct selling (I mean, anyone who knows me, knows I scored 100% Introverted on the Myer-Briggs for a reason!)
Before I continue, I’d like to make a very important point: just because you want to use dōTERRA essential oils, doesn’t mean you automatically have to sell them. In fact the vast majority (I think over 85%) of dōTERRA’s customers are just that- customers, and the option to explore the business aspect is entirely that- optional. So, the purpose of this post is merely to give you my thoughts on network marketing and hopefully alleviate any concerns you might have that by buying some essential oils you’ve inadvertently committed to something else!
My passion, before anything else, is about the role essential oils can play in our natural health care, and I’ve chosen to partner with dōTERRA because in a globally unregulated industry I have found a product that I can trust. People sometimes tell me that they can buy 100% pure essential oils from their local stores for half the price (or more) than dōTERRA’s equivalent, but what I want to know is can they be certain of how that oil is harvested, or if it is indeed 100% of the exact oil listed (or has it been diluted in a carrier oil where it can still claim to be 100%), and are they supported in the most effective uses for that oil? These points are crucial as essential oils are not just innocuous little bottles that smell nice; they are potent plant medicine that should be treated (and harvested) with respect and understanding. Particularly for those who look to rely on them for physical or emotional support- these questions are actually incredibly important, and as a consumer we should want to know the answers.
I’ve also heard claims that dōTERRA’s products are over priced simply to pay those selling the products, yet interestingly this doesn’t appear to be a problem when it comes to conventional retail businesses, where a percentage of the mark up of any product is to pay for the everyday running of a business (staff, shop rent, marketing etc). I actually don’t disagree that dōTERRA’s essential oils are often a little higher priced, however maybe it could be argued that this is because dōTERRA choose to pay people a fair wage (starting with the farmers and harvesters) and that they also commit to and invest in the people they work with by building vital local infrastructure such as schools and medical centres, bringing communities together and improving their collective economic future.
These are among many reasons why dōTERRA chose the direct selling business model- so that people can become active and knowledgable consumers of these products. I’m certainly grateful for it as I probably wouldn't have been introduced to all the benefits of essential oils if it weren't for seeing someone I knew (and trusted) talking about it on my social media news feed. I have always been passionate about holistic health and have used essential oils in my life for over two decades, yet there was still so much I didn't know…and I was fascinated by it.
My sincere hope is that I can play a small part in inspiring others too. For me it’s about intentional living, because when it comes to our health and well-being, I believe it is important that we choose the best we can afford; from food to personal products, from medication to make-up, everything we put on and in our body gets absorbed and is either good or bad for us- it’s that simple. When we take preventative care, when we prioritise our self-care, when we listen to our bodies, we tap into a greater wisdom where essential oils are not the answer but are a fabulous (and fragrant) tool to accompany us on the journey.
I’ve chosen to educate myself by studying to become a certified aromatherapist so I can be confident in the knowledge I am sharing, and I take my role within the direct selling model very seriously to ensure that anyone who purchases the oils through me has as much support as they want and need. So yes, I would earn a commission if you signed up to dōTERRA and bought their products through me, but this is my job and I don’t think it’s wrong that I am paid for it. After all, dōTERRA isn’t the only option out there, but if you’re looking for a company that has strong ethics, a genuine philanthropic vision and transparent business model that looks to empower ordinary people, hopefully you’ll feel it’s a good place to invest.
Ultimately though there will never be a hard sell from me because if it resonates, the rest will follow naturally. In the meantime, I just want to share my love/obsession of natural health care with you and, if you choose to not use oils in your life, or to buy another brand of oils that rocks your World…it’s all cool with me. I just hope now that we've got this awkward conversation out the way we can get comfortable and enjoy exploring the World’s amazing fragrant apothecary together.