• Report: #997598

Complaint Review: Xtreme Marketing Inc

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  • Submitted: Tue, January 15, 2013
  • Updated: Tue, January 15, 2013

  • Reported By: Sal — Tampa Florida United States of America
Xtreme Marketing Inc
21937 US 19 Tampa, Florida United States of America

Xtreme Marketing Inc Innovage dirty, dishonest, pyramid scheme, you work 50+ hour weeks making $50 while fat cat boss makes $5,000 doing nothing Tampa, Florida

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Hahaha. Total ripoff! Like stealing candy from a baby.

*UPDATE Employee ..inside information: Original report is hilariously accurate

*UPDATE Employee ..inside information: If this is SCAM...then why would this company still in bbusiness???...while the complainer still unemployed???

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: this guys has no clue!!!!

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I found this ad on Craigslist that offered a job at $8-$10 an hour or more. Didn't explain too much more. I got a call for an interview and I went to this little hole in the wall office and I saw 10-20 guys all dressed up in suits and thought, "Wow! Now this looks like a nice job." I get the second interview after passing the initial one. Again, nothing was explained about the company other than... in exact words. "We work for a company called Innovage who promotes products not yet on the market for companies like Vivitar, Crayola, Disney, MLB, and even the NFL!", "We aren't sales guys, the only way to describe the business is to go out and watch what we do!"

Well that sounded really exciting. I'm trying to get a job that works for big name companies and is into marketing and promotions! No sales too! Well I go in on my first day of observation and immediately I sense that this isn't what it seems. They said the company is a HUGE company and has all these big name retailers on there side, yet the 2 "owners" are a short, middle aged asian guy who speaks broken English, and a white, British chap that's middle aged and has a heavy accent. Both who tell me that they make soooo much money it's insane and that Stu (the British one) makes on average of $10,000-$20,000 a week, while Ray, the little asian one, makes $5,000-$10,000 a week "promoting".

Great! I thought, although there office doesn't have a sign in front anywhere, the office is really small, and theres no company logos of any of the brands they name dropped in the interview but cool... it sounds good so far... a little too good. Well I go to find out that I don't actually work for Innovage but a company called Xtreme Marketing Inc who apparently works for innovage who works for all those big name companies. Weird, but I'll still give it a chance. Well I go out on the road with another fellow about my age and he expains that he has to drive around and do cold sales from business to business. And on top of that, I'm not selling any cool products from the NFL, MLB, Vivitar, Crayola, Disney or the other dozen companies that I was told but some unknown make up company called Makeover Essentials. I'm selling a 3 piece gift set for $20. WTF!

Well to make a long story a little shorter, we had to solicite business in our own cars, using our own gas, buying our own demo make up kits to businesses who had no idea we were coming. Cold selling make up was the business and all that crap about not being in sales... LIES! Working for big name companies... LIES! Working for Innovage... LIES! $8-$10 an hour... LIES! and that's only the start.

When I get back I am offered the job. Ray tells me theres a base pay of $300 a week starting out and it goes up $100 everytime I hit a certain number of sales and get new make up to sell. He did mention he would like guys to sell 30 kits a week and we would get paid every week in cash.

I gave it a shot because I desperately needed a job. I work a full week to get paid $50 for my 50+ hours of work. (Everyones hours are 8:30 am - 6:30-8 pm Monday-Friday and sometimes Saturdays) I also find out that I only made commision on the sets I sold which our pitch was "It's a $120 make up kit, comparable to MAC and Bobbie Brown that we sell at manufacters cost of only $20! That's a lie because Ray and Stu make $7 a piece on each set and you make $7. We actually charge $22 because they tell us there's tax. So Ray and Stu are at the office all day doing who knows what making as much as I am off of each make up set while I'm busting my ass walking around all day cold selling from business to business, selling this crappy make up set that we lie soooo much about just to make freaking sales! They probably do intentory, interviews, Craigslist ads, and count all the money we just made for them!

They promised me $300 a week and lied. They said they worked for big name companies and lied. They tell us they sell the make up at manufactuers cost and lied. They told me there's no sales or numbers to worry about and lied. They pretty much lie about everything so they get people to come in and sell crappy make up for them while they sit back and cash in out of all your hard work.

That's not all. Everyday before we set out we have these ridiculous cold sales, we go over the same sales pitches with new ways to swindle unexpecting people out of there money and if you ever have anything negative to say period... you get yelled at because negative attitudes bring everyone down and you can say nothing bad about the business or the business model or you get penaltized. So you can never call them out on any of there schemes or you'll get fired with no pay.

This is the worst job I've ever had. I got paid about $1 an hour for my time not to include the gas you have to pay the other guys to drive there own vehicles around (there aren't any business vehicles to drive. You use your personal vehicle), the food you buy for lunch, all the drinks you buy because you're walking around all day, and your own gas to drive to there which if you took out the gas it takes you to get there you're still spending around $15 a day for your lunch, drinks, and the other guys gas which totally negates any profit you made for the day. On top of that they do 1099 tax forms so they don't even take out taxes and you'll have to pay taxes at the end of the year for all your earnings.

So don't ever get sucked in this terrible work place unless you want to bust your ass for some scuzzy Brit and broken English Asian who make money off of poor jobless saps like myself and are too lazy to do the leg work themselves. It's a total scheme and the products they sell are crap. Like anyone would ever pay $120 retail for that make up unless they were totally insane.

Please stop these people from being in business. They laughed when I asked if they were BBB certified. They said it was a waste of money and that all business' do is pay $3,000 to have the logo and that it means nothing. Everything they say is lies and horsesh*.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/15/2013 08:52 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Xtreme-Marketing-Inc/Tampa-Florida-33765/Xtreme-Marketing-Inc-Innovage-dirty-dishonest-pyramid-scheme-you-work-50-hour-weeks-ma-997598. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Hahaha. Total ripoff! Like stealing candy from a baby.

AUTHOR: Gator - ()

Every negative comment said about this company is true. I agree that this company has potential to be successful, if run correctly. The Tampa office was NOT managed well. First of all, I have worked for previous "scam" companies in the past. I was one of those knife selling schmucks. HOWEVER, that company turned out to be pretty legit. After making $5,000 in 2 months, my skepticism about marketing jobs was no longer on high alert. I was a fool for letting my guard down. 

So, shortly after my job hunt had started, I received a phone call about a marketing position. A very vague phone call that didn't have a lot of details. HECK not even the website has job details! The entire process is very vague, which is probably why so many get lured in. Curiosity killed the cat. Let's skip past the details here.

Let's get to the office. It's in a nice professional building. Eventually, you make your way to this sketchy, no named door to the office. You walk in, and there's a small waiting room to the left, with a refridgerator that's not plugged in, a TV that doesn't work, and about 10 other people with whom you think you're competing against. Sorry, I'm getting off-track. There's nobody at the front desk and eventually a girl walks out to take your name and information. Cool, time to go wait (3 HOURS) in the waiting room.

After waiting so long, that you feel any moment you should leave, you are introduced to a manager with a baggy jacket and saggy pants. Mind you, the suit is professional; however, unprofessional in size. He still looks pretty sharp, so you disregard his lack of appropriately fitted attire. You are then informed that you will be taken in his dirty, crappy vehicle for an "observation" of what the job is like. You will sit in the back, crumple your legs almost up to your chest, and go watch these guys bomb in action. Seriously, it was a catastrophe. I was nervous at first. But with all the cute boys around, who's to say no! Not to mention I desperately needed a job and a guaranteed $300 a week seemed good to me.

Fast forward past the first day, second day, month. After about 2 weeks, or whenever you sell enough sets, you no longer get the guaranteed $300. You are left in the pool to drown. They blame your terrible sales on everything but the company itself. Your attitude was bad. You didn't hit enough doors. The list goes on. OH and all the talk about driving your own car? They reign you in if you have a car because none of the bums who have hung around have cars anymore. THEY CAN'T AFFORD TO PAY FOR THEM. So many coworkers lost their cars to this company. You end up driving your OWN car EVERY DAY to haul these bums around. They are usually so broke, they offer to buy your FIVE DOLLAR meal in exchange for gas money. Some of the good gents would reimburse you; however, once you become a "leader," you're hung out to dry in the gas money department.

After being driven down to only having $200 to my name, I wasn't sure this was the place for me. However, I had made a lot of friends and was finding that they made the job worthwhile. I can do this! Unfortunately, the excitement only lasted so long, and the time came when I needed a real, steady-paying job. At which point I quit. What happened next? I was BANNED from talking to, hanging out with, or basically even being friends with any of the people I had been close with at the company. Not a single bad word about this ripoff company had ever left my mouth. EVER. It didn't matter though. The bone-headed, arrogant, broken-English speaking Asian wouldn't let me hang out with them anymore. I was forced to see my friends in secrecy, what kind of BS is that!? 

All that talk about "you leaving the company, it didn't leave you," is just a crock of bull. This company will invite you in, make you feel like a superstar, and then steal all your money, along with any friends you had on the job. Essentially leaving you to go decompose in a sewer for all they care. These guys that make soooo much money, they live in hotels. They break their leases. Their cars get repossessed. They have to TAPE their shoes together, not to mention eat Ramen every day. Unless they can swindle a pretty face to buy meals for them or let them stay over. This glamourous job alienates you, while at the same time, single-handedly creating a bunch of broke and homeless bums. I feel sorry for the d-bags that are still brainwashed by this little Asian man and his no good, dirty deeds to make the most money out of the most innocent of people. God forbid you're a female and steal his little minions away from him and all his glory. If you're a cute one, he will immediately hate you. Oh and if you have anything going for you in life, he will hate you for that too. He only chooses who he gives his attention to, and who to help so that he can get his grubby little, nail curling paws on his cut of their sales.

So with that, I come to the end of my rant. All I have to say is be weary about any kind of marketing job, especially one that pays cash or makes you file a 1099. Most people don't realize how much in taxes they end up owing to the government with a 1099. If the job starts to seem fishy, or you see all your friends losing everything they have, it is probably time to give it up and leave for something better. Even if it makes you even more broke due to a new job hunt.

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#2 UPDATE Employee ..inside information

Original report is hilariously accurate

AUTHOR: RHINO - ()

Yes, the guy that wrote this (I assume it's a guy because that is all that Ray Chia and his boyfriend Justin McCullough hire is men) is blatantly accurate and endlessly humorous!!! Innovage is a legit enough direct marketing company and its subsidiaries could be too unless they are run by lowlife swindlers like Ray Chia and the other guy this report mentioned, Stu Cooper. I love the original author's description of them, cracked me up!!! All owners/mgrs get their start in the field hustling too. I think Ray and Stu's accents helped them sell, honestly, but that's beside the point. Once you become an owner off of your own "sweat equity" that's when things can start going down hill.

When you are running your own location, you gotta make sure there is always new blood so your trainers can build teams to open up their very own office and in essence become an owner/mgr of their own location. Some dirty dealers like Ray Chia like to put up false ads on Craigslist because their ads, on more reputable sites like monster or careerbuilder, get flagged too quickly (plus when you're a penny pinching piece of crap, you don't want to pay for your lies.. ..I mean ads)

They put up these false advertisements with empty promises of pay and what not to take advantage of "hungry" candidates. It's really sad because they prey on vulnerable people who really need work. Ray is too cheap to even hire an admin so he calls his boyfriend Justin, an Earthworm Jim lookin dude, his assistant manager and has him set up interviews with any would be men that respond to the very attractive job ad.

And Justin has been placing these hoaky ads for a while now so he's gotten pretty good at attracting dudes to interviews. They really make sure the ads appeal to men and are very unappealing for women. Sometimes he makes the job seem like warehousing or seasonal work and the pay is at least $300 - $500 / week. Bollocks!! As Stu would say. They wanna take construction guys and other laborers and dress them up in business clothes so they can oggle them and high five with them because somehow it fulfills their homoerotic fantasies. But I'm getting off topic here.

During the initial first round phone interview, Justin will completely dance around any questions about the job itself and keep things very general. He just wants to make sure you have a car so you can drive around selling makeup. But if he has to, he will LIE to you outright and make false claims just to get you in the door. Then in the second personal interview with Ray, he too will dance around any questions about sales and quotas and what have you. And if he has to, he too will LIE to you outright to get you to come back for the observation where you follow a rep/trainer in the field ie: door to door soliciting businesses often when they have a "no soliciting" sign on their door.

Ray is a master con artist which is how he was able to sell enough product and sell enough people on the dream to have his own office. Don't doubt that one on one he could sell you the dream too. He will make it seem like his office will sell all different types of product when he knows well that they will only ever sell makeup. He uses men's naturally competitive nature against them. His mind games will have you thinking there must be something wrong with you because the system works. He will spout off quotes from all sorts of established and respected business people who would vomit at the context which he is applying them to.

Ray has been all over the Midwest with offices in Kansas City, Indianapolis and St Louis. Now he's gone from Tampa/Clearwater up to Atlanta. He's like a locust. He goes and sucks a city and a two hour radius of territories dry for about a year, year and a half before packing up shop and moving on to his next unsuspecting city. But fear not, he will NOT have longevity with his current practices. He, his boyfriend Justin and their band of misguided nitwits will get shutdown by corporate eventually. The more ripoff reports his victims right in each city he tramples through will eventually get the notice of their innovage "god" Scott Williams.

So in short, not all of Innovage's subsidiary companies are criminally negligent or plain old crooked. I do use the term subsidiary very loosely here. I can't speak for any other manager's disgusting and laughable methods except for Ray Chia. He and his boyfriend Justin are despicable human beings. Anyone that has the displeasure of working with them will get sucked dry. If they keep you around even if you're not selling much, it's because they find you attractive and they want you to eventually live with them essentially rent free so they can watch you walk around their apartment half naked. Please be ware of this sick and twisted duo. They will brain wash you!

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#3 UPDATE Employee ..inside information

If this is SCAM...then why would this company still in bbusiness???...while the complainer still unemployed???

AUTHOR: employee - ()

 I have been with this company for over 3 years...the owner actually trained me in the field. He was no joke....worked his butt off for his opportunity in the company....to be an "owner". He started in the field business to business sale rep. Rain or shine, come snow or sleet...he was out there!!! That's why he owns and operates his own location now. Of course, the owner of the company is always the "fat cat" and makes the most money...so whoever this complainer is, he would also probably work in Walmart and complain why the owner of Walmart (Sam Walton family) makes so much money and do not have to show up to work everyday at the store....duh, most big corporations out there like McDonald, Walmart, BestBuy,....the owner of these companies make the big bucks....it's always the disgruntled employees that were let go or fired are the ones make the least amount of money...and barely last 2-4 weeks. I see people come and go in this company....so as in other companies...so as in relationships, just the nature of life. My advice when you leave a company, don't bitch about it...the company didn't leave you, you did! Kinda like if you leave you bf/gf, don't bitch about the relationship...because your the one that left, not her/him. The one that leaves is the one that quits on the commitment.....the owners in this company didn't quit, that's why they make it! If you ever go to an interview for a marketing company, you should get nervous!!! It's a tough industry, but if survive it, you'll make the big bucks eventually. If you do your research on what jobs are most secured....it is marketing!!! Just be careful on a company that wants you to put money up front!!! Not bad for a guy that barely speaks perfect english...so what's this guy's excuse NOW??? He should be doing a lot better than the asian and british guys...I watched a guy that ran in the Olympics...has both prostetic legs, so who give a sh8t whether you speak great english or not....have legs or not.....everyone is qualified for success!!!

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#4 REBUTTAL Owner of company

this guys has no clue!!!!

AUTHOR: hr@dept - ()

Yes...we are a marketing company and we get paid by our sale. Yes, I am actually lose money when my company train new trainees...company makes $6 a kit...and the rep makes $7. So when a new rep sells 30 kits a week...he/she makes 30 x $7...equals to $210...me as the owner, I have to fork out another $90 out of my company so this new guy gets a min $300 take home a week....so the company is willing to take a loss so our new recruits can survive and finally get on their feet. We don't train people that can't perform...after all marketing is like any other professional sport...if you don't perfrom, YOU DON'T GET DRAFT IN NFL, NBA, etc. SO THE PEOPLE THAT COMPLAIN A LOT ABOUT US, USUALLY SUCKS ON HIS/HER MOMMA'S TITS...GROW SOME BALLS AND BE THE PLAYER THAN THE CRYING BABIES!!!!!

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