Author Topic: USA Thermomix  (Read 39515 times)

Offline Gertbysea

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11471
  • Don't experience life from the cheap seats.
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #105 on: September 17, 2016, 10:59:00 pm »
Cookie, I was VERY interested in the KA thermal cooker too, but they're not available here in the US. KA itself is a very strong/dominant brand here with the kitchen mixer, fridges, stoves/hot plates and dishwasher. Perhaps KA executives know something about the American consumer that Vorwerk does not?

 Nail on head me thinks MEP? Is Vorwerk doomed to fail in the US? Have you heard anything about the "official" launch? It must be near.

Gert
Gretchen in Cairns, Australia

Life is like an onion; you peel off one layer at a time and sometimes you weep. Carl Sandburg.

Offline MEP

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 526
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #106 on: September 17, 2016, 11:52:58 pm »
Gert, what do you mean by the official launch? The TM5 has already been launched and available for purchase now. They have consultants in LA and Washington DC (Melissa USA is from there) but like I have said, consultant support has been NIL so not the same level of service as in Australia. However, given its such a new concept, Americans are going to need that demonstration more. Doomed to fail here in the US? Probability for this is certainly higher than in more established markets.

I also dislike the secrecy that surrounds the Vorwerk business model. Would love to know how much consultants get per machine sold.
From Perth WA

Offline Gertbysea

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11471
  • Don't experience life from the cheap seats.
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #107 on: September 18, 2016, 12:39:20 am »
MEP Vorwerk are planning an official launch possibly with bells and whistles as opposed to the soft launch almost by word of mouth while they figure it all out. Don't believe everything you hear or read about where the consultants actually are, how many there are and what they are paid. There is a sliding scale for each consultant depending on how many they sell. I published a list here somewhere some years ago and I doubt it has changed all that much but be assured every level gets it cut. The distributor, the state or regional manager, the group leaders and so on down to the consultant. Maybe someone here can remember which thread it was published in.

Years ago Vorwerk was the largest shareholder on Tupperware but when they failed to gain control of the company they sold their share and pulled out.They do have a lot of experience in direct selling but possibly no insight into the American way of filling their vast bellys and I include myself in that one!!! If I was still living in the US I would not buy a TX as there is a wealth of good quality pre prepared food on the market much cheaper than I could make it for and that includes Allen's lovely clam chowder. I doubt the ordinary home cook would get the concept of cooking in a blender.

Gert
Gretchen in Cairns, Australia

Life is like an onion; you peel off one layer at a time and sometimes you weep. Carl Sandburg.

Offline Gertbysea

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11471
  • Don't experience life from the cheap seats.
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #108 on: September 18, 2016, 12:46:24 am »
Here is a quote from bubhub from last year.

"FI'm not a consultant but my mum is. She gets $300 and something per machine but the more you sell the more commission you make per machine. My mum doesn't usually sell many machines to friends. Most sales are word of mouth from people she's already sold them to. She also gets referrals from the area manager/head consultant (unsure of correct terminology) that come through the thermomix website. My mum really enjoys it. The only downside my mum mentions is being stuffed around by people (demos, machine drop offs etc) and dealing with unsatisfied customers."

Another.
"The better your sales, the more incentives you receive as a Thermomix consultant. These can range from new kitchen gadgets to cooking classes with celebrity chefs such as George Colombaris.

Thermomix works on a commission-based structure for demonstrators, with rewards offered on a monthly basis. Often the incentives – which are awarded on top of your commission – can be earned by selling as little as one or two Thermomixes per month."

Spend some time googling and you an find out all the "secrets". Some consultants are not at all descrete and there are a lot of pissed off consultants who spend time bagging Vorwerk and Grace Mazure,in particular, on line. I doubt the US will be any different and may be worse as Americans have a higher expectation of good
service than do Australians. We are often very much surprised if we receive good service here.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2016, 12:48:51 am by Gertbysea »
Gretchen in Cairns, Australia

Life is like an onion; you peel off one layer at a time and sometimes you weep. Carl Sandburg.

Offline MEP

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 526
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #109 on: September 18, 2016, 12:54:28 am »
Oh, I haven't heard anything about a formal launch. That will be very interesting to see how, what, when, who and where. You're so right about availability of pre-prepared foods on the US. I wouldn't touch most of it though - too many chemicals and too much processing. Fresh food is very cheap here compared to Australia.

I agree with your sentiment re the ordinary home cook probably not going to get the concept of cooking in a blender, a costly one at that. Only time will tell. Perhaps it will be the same as elsewhere with the majority of consultants quitting after they have sold 6? machines and get theirs for free.
From Perth WA

Offline Gertbysea

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11471
  • Don't experience life from the cheap seats.
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #110 on: September 18, 2016, 12:58:48 am »
More recent MEP.

"You cannot buy a Thermomix from a shop. Similar to brands like Tupperware and Avon, they are sold by consultants, who work on commission, during in-home demonstrations. Consultants must hold a minimum of four demos a month and if they fail to make sales, they are let go.
“You’re not allowed to call it a party. It’s a demonstration,” said Sally*, 40, from the Sunshine Coast. “You’re not allowed to drink during the demonstration “but I wasn’t going to tell people they couldn’t drink a glass of wine,” she said.
There has to be a minimum of three households at the demonstration, which takes two hours and includes tasting different recipes like bread, pizza and risotto, to show off the machine’s 12 different functions.
She said if consultants cook anything outside the approved recipes, they get into trouble.
The company encourages them to serve food on plastic green plates, matching the brand’s signature colour. A consultant’s $350 start-up kit includes a dark green apron with the company logo to be worn during demos.
Customers don’t have to make a decision on the spot. It’s the consultant’s job to call you after the demonstration and try to close the sale. (News.com.au heard several examples of customers receiving multiple follow-up calls. “I eventually stopped answering the phone,” one woman said).
“If you sell one machine a month, you get $220 commission. Two a month, then $250 (per machine). If you sold seven machines or more in a month, then you got $360 per machine,” Sally said.
“In one month I got $5500, but I did 10 demos that month and I sold 13 machines. But in the month after that, the number of phone calls I had back and forth from people with broken machines, and having to take them back, it wasn’t worth it.”
BEING A CONSULTANT ISN’T THAT PROFITABLE
“The machine and the service I don’t have a problem with. It’s the company and it’s the structure,” said Ruth*, a 61-year-old Queensland woman who started consulting in 2011 and worked for Thermomix for two years.
“The more a consultant sells, the more all the rest of the people up the chain make. That’s why they push the consultant to do more, so that they get more.”
Ruth says she didn’t end up making any money during her time as a consultant.
“Between travelling and buying the ingredients, I really don’t think I made anything. I did my tax one year and my accountant just said to me ‘Forget it, you didn’t make any money’.”
While the consultant job is marketed towards stay-at-home mums, Sally says to make money, you have to treat it like a full time job.
“They promote it to mums by saying ‘You’ll earn some extra cash’, but you don’t get paid for the demonstration. You have to buy all the ingredients, it takes about an hour of food prep at home, you have to drive to their house. Between buying all the food, travel time and petrol, it’s just not worth it,” she said.
After two years, and 60 machines sold, Sally quit. “I thought, ‘You women are b*tches and I don’t want to be a part of this’. Thermomix has a large turnover of staff because you do it, then you see the light.”

Gert
Gretchen in Cairns, Australia

Life is like an onion; you peel off one layer at a time and sometimes you weep. Carl Sandburg.

Offline MEP

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 526
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #111 on: September 18, 2016, 01:06:21 am »
I have read that Grace Mazur is not so nice. On the faulty TMX FB site, people have stated she tried to silence people by making them sign confidentiality agreements before refunding money for machines that have caused injury to people. These guys refused to sign, went to the ACCC? and Grace had to refund without the signed confidentiality agreements. Very unscrupulous.

Very interesting reads you are finding and posting Gert. Well, it didn't cost my consultant any money for petrol or food and barely any time as I didn't have a demonstration. Money for jam for that sale. Plenty more of these tunes of sales here I would expect, but the whole business model may fail quicker as a result.
From Perth WA

Offline Jamberie

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2339
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #112 on: September 18, 2016, 04:05:44 am »
I'm loving this thread! Gert, you always provide such good information!
I have a Facebook page with all things cooking, you'll find it here: https://www.facebook.com/What-Amber-Ate-1097437023601587/

Offline achookwoman

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 17797
    • View Profile
    • Chook woman
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #113 on: September 18, 2016, 05:13:33 am »
KA , machine has slightly larger bowl but no scales. Still love my 5.

Offline MEP

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 526
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #114 on: September 18, 2016, 10:13:52 am »
I like the TM5 too Chookie. It would have been nice to have a choice though. Given its strong brand and presence in the US, im very surprised that KA chose not not sell the KA cooker here.
From Perth WA

Offline Melissa USA Consultant

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 27
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #115 on: September 22, 2016, 03:12:43 pm »
Please excuse my absence from the forum, and I am very sorry if I gave anyone the impression that I am not interested in providing information about Thermomix in the USA and giving best customer service that I possibly can. Between giving pre and post purchase demos, working with our customers to help them learn to use their TM5s (we have almost 250 so far), getting our website up, etc., I not been able to check back on Forum Thermomix as often as I used to. I will make sure to check in more often in the future.

MEP, I would love to contact you directly regarding your concerns but you have asked us not to do so. I am so sorry that you did not feel supported in your purchase and wish you would allow us to try and remedy that.

In terms of some of the discussion that has been going on, I am happy to provide what information I know. Keep in mind that as a consultant I am not necessarily in the loop regarding broader strategic decisions made by Thermomix USA and Vorwerk. But here is what I know:

LAUNCH: Thermomix USA is still in its "soft" launch phase which is limited to Los Angeles and San Francisco, California. The idea is to use these markets to learn more about the USA while setting up the infrastructure needed to support the larger country. Consultants were told late last year that the larger USA launch would happen this month, September. This has not happened, nor have we been given a date for when this launch will occur. Best I can tell, it is taking longer than expected to get the necessary infrastructure in place. Things that consultants and customers take for granted in other countries (financing/payment pans, host gifts/incentives, recipe platform, multiple cookbooks, etc.) are either not yet available or only recently being tested. I can’t speak to why it is taking as long as it is, but I suspect it is a combination of a new country with different business rules, a small core Vorwerk team in place here, and the sheer size of this country, which Vorwerk has not dealt with before. 

SALES: Despite only recruiting consultants in LA and SF, Thermomix can be purchased from anywhere in the country. In these cases, where the customer does not have a local consultant, the Vorwerk customer service team is supposed to act in that role. Without getting in specifics, let it suffice to say that this is still a work in progress.

STRUCTURE & COMPENSATION:  I believe that Thermomix will be structured in the US similarly to other countries, with the traditional consultant/team leader/branch manager/area manager construct. At this time we have nothing above the Team Leader. To answer GERTBYTHESEA’s comment, there is no USA distributor (it is not a distributorship), nor do we have area, regional or state managers. All we have so far is consultants (all but 3 of whom are in LA and SF) and a very small number of team leaders. I am not able to share the exact compensation, but from what I can tell, it is similar to many other countries in that it is based on a set amount per order, plus a bonus/incentive for selling more than in a single month.

UNDERSTANDING THE AMERICAN MARKET: I believe this is and will be Vorwerk’s biggest challenge here. It is easy to generalize about the “American market”, but the truth is that there is no single American market. The person buying Thermomix in California is not the same as the one buying it in Iowa. We have many people who don’t cook and resort to pre-made foods, but we also have millions of people who still make home cooked meals every day. With over 300 million people, we may be a single country, but we are very diverse. GERTBYHESEA’s comments about European recipes not being as attractive to Americans is very true, particularly in the central part of the country. I had a customer in Utah tell me that the recipes in the USA Basic Cookbook were “too weird”. However on the east and west coasts, international recipes are very sought after. Fortunately, Thermomix has been working on USA-specific cookbooks, and will be releasing 2 American cook “booklets” next month. They also have a larger USA cookbook (and I think recipe chip, but not certain) coming out in November.

METRIC VS IMPERIAL: The USA TM5 (like all new TM5s being manufactured now) can easily toggle between Metric and US Imperial weights and temps. The USA Basic Cookbook, however, is only in US Imperial. I suspect this was deliberate and designed to appeal to Americans who are not familiar with the metric system and want to see something familiar to them. It is a great long term strategy as it covers 95+% of the people who live in the USA, but it does not take into account the early adopters – people who are buying now. Most people who are buying Thermomix now are doing so because they already know about it from experience in another country. And in that country, you can bet they used metric! Which makes the American-focused used of Imperial less attractive to these early buyers. And this has been compounded because until very recently we were not even able to get international Thermomix cookbooks for our customers! It is funny because I purchased a number of metric Thermomix cookbooks from Canada and used them for a promotion we ran last month. (As I mentioned, Thermomix itself does not yet offer promotions but I know people like them, so wanted to be able to offer something.) All of the cookbooks are metric. When I sent the list of available cookbooks to the people who won them I received frustrated emails from some customers because all of the books are metric while others wrote me thanking me for making metric books available!

Please let me know if you have other questions and I will try and do my best to answer them.

Offline Melissa USA Consultant

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 27
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #116 on: October 05, 2016, 03:10:23 pm »
Just checking in - any other questions about Thermomix in the US? I did learn some exciting news recently, including the fact that Thermomix USA will be sending out its first newsletter this month. I am looking forward to seeing it myself!

Offline cookie1

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 32976
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #117 on: October 06, 2016, 10:51:36 am »
If it has any exciting recipes Melissa perhaps you could send us a link to it, or share it.
May all dairy items in your fridge be of questionable vintage.

https://www.facebook.com/The-Retired-Thermomixer-834601623316983/

Offline Melissa USA Consultant

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 27
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #118 on: October 07, 2016, 02:37:29 am »
The newsletter just came out, and it features a Halloween recipe for Bloody Almond Fingers. I am attaching the recipe.

Offline cookie1

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 32976
    • View Profile
Re: USA Thermomix
« Reply #119 on: October 07, 2016, 08:00:21 am »
Thanks Melissa. They look quite revolting, but it guess that is what they are supposed to do. Do many people bake for Halloween over there?  It's not that big here, usually only local kids looking for some lollies for nothing.
May all dairy items in your fridge be of questionable vintage.

https://www.facebook.com/The-Retired-Thermomixer-834601623316983/