Man Cave: Tupperware meets Chuck Norris?
For most people, network marketing/party plan selling conjures images of Avon ladies, Fuller Brushes, and perhaps Tahitian Noni Juice.
Now Man Cave wants to replace that stereotype with grilling, beer, and poker.
According to a 2008 survey conducted by the Direct Selling Association, women comprise 86.4% of all people engaged in direct selling.
But with recession-related job losses hitting men hardest, Man Cave is hoping that the combination of an income opportunity, male camraderie, and premium buffalo patties can lure men into a field that has traditionally been dominated by women.
University of Minnesota student Nick Beste, 22, started the company and projects $11 million in sales this year with 421 "advisors." Beste said in an e-mail exchange with WalletPop that they "work our asses off to convince men that it's cool and manly."
Mary Kay can have its pink Cadillacs and rah-rah meetings. Man Cave looks to market itself with an exaggerated -- and perhaps terrifying -- masculinity. The Web site includes a list of the "Laws of the Man Cave." Among them:
- No man shall ever turn down free beer... for any reason. Never. Ever. Seriously, Never.
- Grilling, regardless of weather, is always the first choice for cooking.
- A man is permitted to build his "Man Cave" in anyway he wishes. However NO "Man Cave" shall ever include: A fridge incapable of holding a case of beer, "Fat Free" potato chips, and any variation of the color pink.
Beste added that Man Cave seeks to differentiate itself from other multi-level marketing companies with a "super simple" compensation plan and no up-front fees.
One problem for guys looking to use Man Cave to make money in the recession? The premium quality of the company's products results in high prices. Is the recession really the best time to try to get $30 for an 8-pack of buffalo patties?
Beste says his prices are "higher than a typical low-end grocery store but lower than a typical high-end grocery store. Once people try our meat they think the prices are great!"