There’s no doubt MCA has a product people need and there’s a lot of interesting videos floating around the web from people supposedly making tons of money.
But what’s the REAL story behind this? Here’s what I found…
About Motor Club of America (MCA)
The company was founded in 1926 by William Green as an automotive services club and is now run by CEO David Kircher. The company was acquired by TVC Marketing Associates in 2011, a company founded by Virgil Coffee.
At the time TVC took over, MCA began selling it’s services through a multi level marketing business model.
Are The Services They Provide Worth It?
I haven’t personally used one of the companies 3 core memberships but apparently they have over 7,000,000 happy customers throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.
The membership includes a range of benefits including roadside assistance, legal help in the event of an accident, hospital cover and discounts on travel and accommodation among other things.
There are 3 membership levels:
From what I have seen the service is reasonably good but it depends on what you are looking for.
I had a look at the 3 membership levels within AAA and here’s how their ‘Premier’ membership for $144 looks:
- 1x 200 mile tow in one year and 3x 100 mile tows in the same one year period on separate calls
- Between $100-$150 for locksmith services if you lock yourself out of house or vehicle
- $10,000 worth of identity theft cover
- $1500 ‘trip delay’ payment for if you get stuck in the middle of nowhere after a breakdown or accident
- One day complimentary car hire
On these same 5 point here’s how the MCA ‘Total Security’ membership level for $239.40 stacks up:
- You get 1x 100 mile tow included each day of the year
- No lock smith services provided
- $1,000 identity theft cover
- No ‘trip delay’ payment in the event of an accident or break down
- $500 for car hire
Of course this is a very brief overview rather than a comprehensive point by point analysis but it shows the basics. I think AAA wins on pretty much every front.
Some might argue that the towing (point 1) is better with MCA but I wonder how many times I’d need to be towed each year lol. Personally I’d rather have one big 200 mile tow for that one time things go really wrong, as oppose to many smaller tows.
There are some things that MCA provide better though depending on what you are looking for:
- Legal cost reimbursement such as arrest and bail bonds, attorney fees and a nifty 5k reward if you decide to go detective and find whoever stole your car
- Daily hospital cover, up to 5x $100 payments for emergency medical fees and 50k death cover
These are definitely some good benefits and they really do add a whole new element of value that AAA doesn’t offer.
As with anything though it always pays to read the fine print before deciding on any option.
Verdict: Depends on what you are looking for I guess. From a purely ‘vehicle break down’ perspective I’d choose AAA but in the event of an accident, the legal and hospital cover seem way better with MCA.
The Business Opportunity
When I first started looking into this company it reminded me of a cash gifting scam I reviewed a while ago simply because of the insane amount of hype and misleading marketing tactics employed by some of the distributors.
I mean IF I was judging this opportunity on the marketing and ethical standards aspect alone, I’d call this a 100% scam.
Given the nature of an mlm having ‘independent distributors’ the company can quite easily distance themselves from the actions of their reps. When you see so many of them acting in the same way and the absolute blatant offenders still being allowed to represent the company, it starts making me wonder what’s going on behind the scenes.
Is this the kind of behaviour secretly being encouraged by the guys at the top? I can’t say for sure but it wouldn’t surprise me one bit.
Anyway, the idea behind this is to sign up to the ‘Total Security’ membership level and then tell others about the benefits and how they can make money recruiting others. Mostly friends and family.
The concept of mlm is (and always will be) centred heavily around recruiting and that’s fine by me as long as there is legit value in the product itself and the compensation plan is fair.
So how does it stack up?
The Compensation Plan
Looking at the company website, they do not provide an official compensation plan document which is never a good sign. They instead opt for presenting a very brief look at what you can earn.
Note: Before I start here I want to state that I am basing this on as much credible information as possible from various sources. Since the company does not provide the official comp plan document, I’ve done my best to provide you guys with the most accurate description as possible. Always do your own research before making any decisions.
Getting Started & Staying Active
The cost to get rolling is $39.90 upfront and $19.95 per month thereafter for as long as you want to be with the company. It seems the only way to join as a distributor is through the ‘Total Security’ membership.
There was mention of some kind of productivity quota to earn on levels 3 & 4 after 90 days which likely means maintaining a certain number of active memberships.
How You Can Earn
Direct Sales: When you sell a ‘total security’ membership you’ll get $80 and a new distributor under you. When those distributors find their own distributors, you’ll make an additional $6 one time. After that you can earn $1.32 from levels 3 & 4 and a monthly residual of $0.66 on those last two levels as well.
The company provides very little information about how you earn from customer sales other than at this top level so I won’t speculate here.
Also, I tried signing up to the ‘security plus’ membership myself and it just led me to the top level membership order form…
That led me to this:
Confusing and annoying to say the least.
The Mysterious Matrix: I have to say this is both a powerful earnings potential and something they keep pretty quite about on their website. According to a YouTube video I watched made by a rep (www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZ2dtNsOBNk) there is a whole other element to this opportunity called the matrix.
This is a 3×8 forced matrix whereby everyone already in your downline that ‘upgrades to Platinum’ automatically goes into this matrix downline, as long as you also pay to join it. The cost is $39.99 per month and according to the video the matrix only includes those on the platinum level.
You can only ever have 3 people directly under you in this downline structure and everyone else can only have 3 people. So if we cut to the chase and look at a full 8 level deep matrix you’d need 9,840 Platinum members under you to earn $7,575.
That in itself is pretty average.
There is a matching bonus on your 1st and 2nd levels of this matrix. Whatever these people earn you will earn that exact same amount.
So looking at the picture above we can determine there is 12 people on levels one and two, meaning if they all had a full matrix, you could potentially earn a total of $98,475 per month between yourself and their efforts.
To achieve this would require an absolute ton of recruiting though, and you certainly won’t get those numbers by ‘writing a list of those you know’ as the company suggests. I’m afraid that is just a fairy tale designed to convince people it’s super easy for everyone to make money.
The single biggest reason the majority of people fail in mlm is that they do not have enough targeted leads coming in each day. Without leads you have no business, plain and simple.
First Year Cost Estimate
This is an estimate on what I think the main costs would be in getting started in the first year if I joined. Always do your own research before making any decisions.
Joining= $79.98 (I’d go Platinum right away and it’s always paying first and last month upfront with these guys)
Staying Active= $399.90
Other costs can include marketing materials, conventions, training, advertising and more and these have not been taken into account.
The Overwhelming Hype
I have to make mention of the insane level of hype representatives of this company are using to recruit people.
It is also apparent that some of the top performing reps are engaging in grossly inappropriate and downright deceptive behaviour.
Things such as:
- Renting luxury cars and homes to ‘appear’ rich
- Elaborate displays of $100 bills to ‘prove’ wealth when it has been reported to be fake on several occasions (even if it was real this is a super shady way to market a legitimate company)
- Claiming you’ll get rich very quickly and easily
- Abandoning and even abusing newly recruited members after they sign up
A couple of reps I’ve seen pushing this kind of hype are Rodney Walker and Delereon Johnson but they’re just the tip of the iceberg, this company is full of them. This is not a personal attack on anyone in particular but I think it is useful for you guys to get a picture of what is going on and more importantly what is STILL being allowed by this company.
These guys are still active distributors…
What I Liked
- Low cost to get started and stay active
- Reasonable income potential for a Platinum member that knows how to drive traffic (website visitors)
- Memberships seem reasonably good value
What I Didn’t Like
- Way too much hype and deceptive marketing being allowed to go on
- No income disclosure or compensation plan documents provided
- Hide critical information about the structure of earnings
- Lots of complaints online
- They primarily teach the warm market strategy
When I first looked at the MCA opportunity I thought it looked like a textbook scam. After digging a little deeper I would say that the main issue really lies in their lack of transparency and hype. I would not consider joining this company until they became a lot more transparent and stop allowing distributors to run around flashing wads of cash and luxury cars without properly disclosing the real amount of work that goes into achieving that kind of income.
They need to provide people with ALL of the information on their website to be able to properly consider joining up.
In my opinion, the real money is made when you join Platinum and convince others to do the same. In that case the real emphasis would be on directly recruiting people onto your first line only, who will then automatically go into your matrix.
Think about it this way for a moment…
It would take almost 10 years of membership for levels 3 & 4 to pay you the same as what a first level referral would in one day! Clearly then, it would be much better to focus on directly recruiting onto your first line and then bring people into the platinum level matrix where you can start building your real team. Why waste time coaching and helping your standard 4 level downline when they are only paying you pennies?
At best this makes for an average support and mentoring system for anyone not willing to ‘upgrade’ to platinum in my opinion.
The company training you are going to receive consists of hustling family and friends which makes things even more difficult for you. As I mentioned earlier, this is about recruiting and you need to do more than just convince people you know to join, a lot more.
Based on what I have seen I would call this a borderline scam and strongly recommend proceeding with caution if you want to join. There’s no doubt money can be made but you need to ask yourself if this is really giving you the best chance at success as a newbie?
Personally, I’m not so convinced.
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