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The Smart Circle Group / Fake advertising!

1 8280 Nw 27 Ave.Miami, FL, United States Review updated:
Contact information:
Phone: 305-4683813

Well, the title speaks for itself. I actually went through the same thing with JT, and unbeknownst to me, they connived me into their business. Now, their website... wow... whoever created that is at least an awesome web designer. Very misleading though. I studied advertising/communications at Florida State University. It was actually my major...and my first clue that this agency was bogus should have been the fact that nobody there, count it-NOBODY, not even the OWNER, had ever studied advertising or marketing in all it's form. I didn't even see any books in any body's office.

Also, Jared told me there would be no sales involved, and that he himself had no experience in sales. Ok, first of all, advertising is sales, especially if you're a door to door/business to business SALES company SELLING pamphlets and packets that your CLIENTS don't even HIRE you to do. They use big name corporations to reel you into thinking that they are a high profile ad agency. Maybe they need to look up the definition of advertising, and perhaps then study it for a few years.

Most of these people are so brainwashed they don't even realize what they are doing. The girl who took me training, drove me all the way to Fort Lauderdale, and only 'sold' one Disney pamphlet to a poor and gullible worker at target. In addition, we drove to a mall located in a mostly black and his panic area. This is because the girl training me said that they would be more impulse buyers, and they are 'our' best target for selling these stupid things. Basically, we had gone to a few business prior to that, owned and operated by mostly 'white' people, where we had no luck. She explained to me that this is 'because white people know better.' ???

While at the mall, which clearly had a sign that said 'NO SOLICITING', one of the business owners told us to be careful of security, as we could get arrested for soliciting there. I expressed concern to my trainer, as she then replied, 'oh those things never happen. it's just security, they can't arrest us anyway.'

She also approached a business owner and said 'Don't worry, I'm not Jehovah's Witness or anything, I'm not trying to sell you my religion', while the business owner then replied, 'well what if I was? That would be offensive. I'm not interested in anything you have to sell.' I should have known that when I looked up advertising/marketing careers on career, and saw at least 50 openings for 'entry-level, fresh out of college!' positions, under many different pseudonyms, for the SAME COMPANY, that this was a scam.

Poor people...most of them working there haven't gone to college, or are starting to attend, with the possibility of dropping out before they finish because they've found this 'great' opportunity! Beware... they will sell their company until you say yes. And they're not good at sales... neither is the owner... remember? I am more qualified than to have a job that is commission only, and I'm sure you are too... because... yeah, you don't get on salary until AT LEAST 7 months later... that's if you've 'sold' enough 'promotional packets' to consumers. They don't even give you a license to sell these things, just a little home-made badge that says 'JT Advertising.'

At one point, we went into a car sales office, where the owner asked to see our license, and instead my trainer pulled out her 'badge' to which the owner replied, 'I could make that at my computer in my office on Microsoft Works.' They don't even give you business cards! I mean HELLO, if you're going to ACT professional, at least do a better job.

SO, yeah... beware... and don't judge a company by it's website. And if you're in this business, get out while you can. They pay you commission, in cash, under the table, and if you ever plan on having a retirement someday, and you continue working for this company, you can kiss your retirement goodbye because they don't even give you any tax forms to fill out once you accept this job.

They also make you take your own car around to these different neighborhoods selling these stupid things... they say they give you gas money, but yeah right. JT promised me lunch during my training, which I never got, for other miscellaneous problems I had with the company, which is a whole other story.

When I began my quest to JT Advertising, I basically went for an interview at his office where I had applied to on career builder, they called me in, and I ended up interviewing for another promo little dumb office inside of JT Advertising, went on a day of observation with that company, thinking it was JT's all along, found out it wasn't JT's company when a consumer asked for their business card and/or name of the company, to which my trainer replied 'exclusive promotions', asked my trainer to take me back, which she refused, and then when I came back to the office they dropped me off at my car and said I would hear from their boss the next morning on whether I got the job or not.

The next day I called JT and told him that they had not only interviewed me for the wrong company, but for the wrong position also. He informed me that he was sorry and that his company did other business than the one I observed. *cough* yeah right! *cough* He didn't even really explain to me how the mix up happened, I think they just try and recruit people, no matter what subdivisions are inside JT Advertising's office.

I could go on and on... but it's a waste of time. Good luck to those who actually think this is going to get them the business of their dreams. Somebody needs to call the Better Business Bureau on them.

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  • An
      20th of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    Thank you so much for providing insight into their company. I just interview with them and I couldn't put my finger on it... but something was definitely not right. You saved me a lot of trouble and time.

  • Ni
      15th of Feb, 2008
    +2 Votes

    just opened up my office. call when you get that fresh out of college job at 75,000 on salary....that you deserve.

  • Da
      3rd of Apr, 2008
    0 Votes

    Niama, you are brainwashed just like the rest. The company will go under in a few years and you will have nothing, ive seen it in MN. I am a recent grad in Minneapolis and went through this little scam. I have been through several before. Maybe we will make 50, 000 out of college but that includes insurance (which you have to pay for), bonuses, car allowance, 401k, dental, vacation, tuition rembursement, and expense accounts. These guys were bashing corporate jobs but thats because they couldnt get one. There is a reason that they hire anyone. It can work for some people I guess, not many though. Oh and the "manager" that had been there for 4 years that was making "six figures" was driving a rusty 1991 honda.

  • An
      23rd of Apr, 2008
    +1 Votes

    Well, Rimi, I do not blame you for being so upset with the Smart Circle after your experience with them. That sounds terrible.

    The specific division you may have been with doesn't sound very professional. The comment about being a Jehovah's Witness, along with everything else inappropriate that your second round interview leader may have said, will lead to all kinds of problems for those distributors, if they're even with the company still.

    I can tell you, though, that the businesses that Smart Circle advertises for absolutely love them. This is a company that has all but two of the Major League Baseball teams signed. They also work with major companies in the food industry like Papa Johns and Pizza Hut.

    They do have legitimate relationships with the companies they represent. Before starting a new campaign, they meet with either the owners, or for MLB teams, the Director of Sales. They are authorized by those companies to advertise for them using Smart Circle cards, books, and packages.

    Direct Marketing is the most effective form of marketing because not only do you remember the product, for instance, Papa Johns, but you remember the face of the product--the man or woman who was in your store.

    This is why divisions are supposed to hire only quality people. These distributors represent the companies they advertise for. I would never hire someone like the young woman you were describing.

    Like I said, it doesn't sound like that division you were associated with was very professional--or maybe it was just that one person. I hope you gave her a terrible review.

    As for whether or not Smart Circle employees can get corporate jobs, Dan, a good friend of mine is an owner of a Smart Circle division, makes over $200k a year, does drive a very nice car, and yes, had left years of service in a corporate job. He, like most others in the business, has a college degree. And yes, he was making $75k a year, but the job simply wasn't enough for him. He's an entrepreneur. He's not the type of person who wants to work under someone else. He wanted to move onto bigger and better things, and therefore, his hard work paid off.

    No one ever said you had to take the job.
    Only those with the drive and determination are able to stay with the company and be successful.

    I hope this cleared up at least some of the issues mentioned.

  • Da
      2nd of May, 2008
    0 Votes

    I am not disagreeing that direct marketing is the most effective way of advertising or that some of these managers are making good money. My point was that it is an unethical way of doing business and an unethical way of hiring and portraying these positions. If you google Smart circle there will be more complaints that come up instead of business info on the company. If people are unhappy about the way a company does things something has to change.

    I know you shouldnt believe everything you read on the internet but an individual I know worked with "next wave concepts" which is one of the marketing companies in MN. He did everything they told him to do, met all of the goals plus more, put in a lot of hours but stayed on the same level for nearly 2 years before he quit. So you can't say those with drive and determination are able to stay with the company. These are the type of companies that just disappear. If it was that great of an opportunity everyone would be doing it. Not one of the individuals working had prior marketing let alone business experience.

    The bottom line is that if you are looking for a marketing or sales position in MN, make sure you know what you are getting into before you "interview" with one of these companies. Good luck to those who are in the "business" if that is what you call it.

  • Ro
      15th of Jun, 2008
    -1 Votes

    I worked for one of these companies, Dot The i Promotions in Columbus, OH, for three days. I had all the same misgivings in the interview, but they did an incredible job of making their setup sound really simple, like anybody could rise high through the company, and quickly, simply because we were filling a niche in the market that nobody else was hitting and we couldn't open new offices quickly enough to fill client demands. But I quickly saw the company for exactly what it was: a pyramid scheme, set up to trap entry-level workers into low-paying, no-benefits positions, and then convincing them that it's nobody's fault but their own if they can't generate enough leads to climb the ladder and make manager (which, by the way, my leader had been there for 2 1/2 months, and he confessed that there had never been a single assistant manager in the office in that time.)

    They also guarantee you that once you're trained, you'll make $800-1000 a week off of your commissions. The reality is that it's a fantastic week for ANYBODY in the office to generate 30 leads, and at $20/lead, that only comes out to $600. Of course, only a couple of the most experienced people even generate that many, and they do it by coercive tactics and deception, and even they have to work 70 hours weeks to do it. Which you'll be expected to do, as well, if you want to make management.

    Back to the pyramid scheme. They tell you that they can't expand fast enough, and need new managers to move on to new cities and broaden their empire. In reality, they're already in every major city in the US. There's no need for further expansion of that sort--instead, all they need to do is expand their base of people operating at the lowest rungs of the ladder. So they bring in new hirelings on a daily basis, and swiftly promote them to leader so they can build up a team beneath them, but then these hirelings sit and stagnate at leader forever. While it's in the manager's interests to promote them out and start pulling his 2% commission on their offices, the fact of the matter is that it's even more in his interest to focus on bloating his own sales team up as fat as possible before he lets even one of his leaders leave and take half the office with him. And of course, after that happens, it will take him a long time to build his team up big and strong enough to let another leader leave with another chunk of his workforce. So very few people are given the opportunity to really advance to the upper echelons of the pyramid, and even then they have to have their own sizable force built up under them before they do it.

    Last of all, I just want to mention how scary it is to see the fanaticism in these offices. These people are all extremely money-motivated, but every more so they're respect-motivated, with every single one of them out to prove to a parent or friend or spouse that they've been given a wonderful opportunity to make hundreds of thousands of dollars and retire inside of 10 years, or in other words, looking to say I-told-you-so and thus make people respect them. So when they pull out of the lot every day in their old Hondas, Kias and Hyundais, they tell themselves that six figures are right around the corner and ignore the deception, coercion and near-slavery they have to suffer on the path that may or may not get them there.

  • Ka
      18th of Jun, 2008
    -1 Votes

    As a customer of thesmartcircle I am pissed off. What a piece of ### company. They sell you these stupid packages because they know that they are very difficult to redeem. I only bought these stupid things because the fella selling them was promoting D.A.R.E. Come to find, as expected, that I cannot redeem this stupid massage unless I feel like driving 80 miles- boy that is sure to save me money! When I tried to get my money back these scoundrels didn't even offer it as an option, they told me to go online and pick something else. When I insisted a refund they told me to, at my expense and inconvenience, mail back the cards (which they could have easily deactivated by serial #) along with the receipt that I no longer have and they would send me a check in 8 weeks. What a f-ing joke. This company sucks!

  • Da
      11th of Jul, 2008
    -1 Votes

    Ross, you put it perfectly. It is almost sad that these lower level individuals fall into this trap and never get out. And I actualy believe that some of these people feel that they will retire in 10 years, that is what a Pyramid Scheme does. Everyone should also keep in mind that each office has a different name, but they have the same format. Beware.

  • Dr
      5th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    Hi. This is my first experience with your company. I purchased a vacation from an acquaintance of mine for a weekend trip to Atlantic City, NJ. I went through the registration process and recieved my hotel confirmation in the mail (although i asked that it be emailed)without a problem. I'm scheduled to go on the trip this weekend and was very excited to do so. That was however, until I decided to call the reservations department at 866-746-0583 with a question. My question was simply: When is my required tour/presentation scheduled for? That's it! All I wanted to know was when i would be expected to take part of this tour which i knew was a condtion to my trip. I was given the runaround in a major way but the worst part of it...and the reason for this complaint was the EXTREME RUDENESS of a manager or supervisor from reservations named ANGELA at extension 228. She was very rude to me...i could not beleive it. She sounded annoyed with me for asking my question, told me that i did not understand what she was saying and that she was sure i would have to call her again. (Pardon me for saying but I am a medical doctor in the United States of America, i'm sure i can understand the language of a minimum wage high-school graduate!!)
    If this is the way your company treats people they are soliciting sales from then I don't think you will be in business for long. I haven't even gone on my trip and I already have a bad taste in my mouth.
    For what it's worth, this is the first time i've EVER submitted a complaint to a company. I always treat people with courtesy and respect and always recieve the same in return, , , , UNTIL NOW!
    My hope is that the appropriate people get this complaint and address the issue before you lose more customers.

    Kind Regards,

    Dr. Mercedes

  • Bu
      19th of Sep, 2008
    -1 Votes

    Whatever! You guys are talking a bunch of krap! The only reason that you guys aren't doing good in the company is because you suck at it! This company offers a great exsperience! The only people that are going to make it toward the role of an "owner" is the people that deserve it and earn it! So if you have any negative comments about the company "Smart Circle" then go [censored] yoursel[censored]

  • Da
      21st of Oct, 2008
    -1 Votes

    Ok "buddy" go sell your little coupons outside walmart for $7 for 3 years. This is just scam for uneducated people who can't find a real job. You can't even spell. And anyone can be successful in any company. Anyone that is really successful didnt go through scams to get where they are. There is a reason that they "hire" everyone. The owners are just scamming young individuals and leveraging their labor for there own personal gain. The whole process is unethical. Talk to me in 5 years Buddy and we will see where you are in the company and where the people who got degrees and real jobs are.

  • Jo
      27th of Oct, 2008
    0 Votes

    Dan I agree with you all the way.I used to work for a company called Maxima Marketing in Cleveland, OH. The first day in the office the only words I could muster were "What the ### is wrong with you people." It's all about brainwashing, trust me. They feed you all kinds of ###, basically lie to you in your interview about what your job will be. I went in to the interview because the ad on the internet was all about working for the Cleveland Indians.###.They tell you that but the reality is you only sell ticket packages for them for a few months out of the year. The rest of the time you are selling crappy packages for restuarants, hotels, or some stupid ### like putt putt funhouse. Tell me how you would feel knocking on someone's door in your Goodwills suit lookin all professional to tell them you are with Putt Putt Funhouse. I say Goodwills because 90% of the employees are regulars there.
    I went from Cleveland, OH to Houston, TX on this little journey. This is what was supposed to happen:
    The so called "assistant manager" in the Cleveland office(a dope smokin, drug traffickin liar) was supposed to be starting his own company in Houston. He made it sound like he had allllll this moneyyyy.
    So i decide to take the trip and help him and the team build the office in H-Town. Now here is where it gets funny. By the time we hit Tennessee we pull into a gas station and he asks me how much money I have. I tell him none of his business and then he says he never received his last check from Cleveland and he needed gas money to make it to Texas...ummmm...I should have turned around and came back to Ohio but I wanted to travel the country for a while anyway. So I actually had to loan him the money to make it there. Mind you, we were in Tennessee before his little secret(one of about a million).
    I was never able to get a clear answer out of this guy, it was all the run around game. Not to mention, when we got to Texas he, his wife and 2 kids were shacked up with his mom and step dad. The so called big money maker didn't even have a place of his own. He never did get his own company, not while I was there anyway. He told me he would have it shortly, we would just need to partner with another company called Premier Advertising in Houston for a while.Well I was there for 6 months and He hadnt achieved his goal yet.
    It was all the same ### it the office and out "in the field." It's like pulling teeth as leader to get your interviews to come back the next day. The company basically expects you to lie to them and I just couldn't do it. I wanted to be in a legitimate business. I wanted people to stay because they wanted to be there not because the lies I told sounded so enticing. I also hated the fact that we had to walk in doors that said no soliciting. I could just see the anger in the employees faces the second I walked in the door of their business. They immediately knew I was selling something and wanted me out.It was embarrassing because I knew I was in the wrong for even walking in, but yet I was brainwashed to make it sound ok and legal.
    I guess the only thing good was the fact that it did take me around the country, from Cleveland to Houston to New Orleans to Dallas.But in the end, the whole company is a scam and yes you will have to work 70 + hours a week to make it. Even working that many hours doesnt guarantee ###. Your at the office at 7 a.m. and not home until 8 or 9 in the evening most nights.Doesn't leave anytime for family, and believe me they try to convince you that is OK.
    Not to mention, in the office they try to turn you into the biggest cornball you can imagine. I've seen it. It was a cornball takeover in there. Sometimes I just wanted to jump out the window and run for my life.
    I mean J.U.I.C.E. what the ### is that. Join Us In Creating Excitement. That's what they get you all rowled up on in the office every morning, making it seem your dreams are right around the corner, or right around the cornball.Brainwashed, all of you. It's sad, it really is.

  • An
      4th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    I did some work in South Florida for this ### company. I'm a college graduate, and I have an account on I found an ad saying "Entry Level Marketing Position: Work with NFL, NHL, NBA, MLB Teams!" So I applied. The next day I got an email from someone in the "Human Resources" Dept. telling me to come in for an interview. I show up for my interview, and it's a small office in a warehouse building with music blasting. After filling out some paper work, I'm called in by a guy who MIGHT be two years older than I am. He was the owner of the company. The interview took a grand total of 5 minutes. He said the job consists of hosting "events" that promote big companies like the Miami Heat, Los Ranchos, Disney, Royal Caribbean and Carnival.

    He scheduled me for a second interview the next day to "learn the ropes" and go to an event with one of the leaders. I agreed to come in and basically, the So-Called Event he was talking about was standing in front of Publix with a bunch of coupons hounding people for 8 hours. I get back, get offered a position, which I accepted since I was so desperate for a job. Before I accepted, I asked if this would be a salary based job and he said it was a low salary with high commission and later on I'd be payed a high salary with lower commission. I figured I'd give it a shot, since I needed to work. The next morning, I reported to the office, and was told to go into a little room called "atmosphere" for meetings. When I walk in, there's a gong and cowbell, loud music playing, and people practicing their methods of selling crap. I was overwhelmed. Then came the motivational meeting. The owner kept talking about opportunity and how you are your own boss in this business and bashed Corporate America. He also said to ignore any outside factors (family, friends, significant others) that give you a hard time about working 10 hours a day 6 days a week because you could be retired in 10 years or less. They talk about the Field like it's a temporary thing, but when I asked some of the leaders and distributors how long they've been there and their responses were anywhere from 6-12 months, which was another warning sign.

    What blew me away far more than anything else was the fact that everyone in the office was so money hungry. They would brag about suckering people into "rehashing" or buying multiple products. They always liked to hide the "catches" that these promotions had; even some that I never knew about. For example, I was explaining a Tire Kingdom promotion to a potential buyer, and I was told in atmosphere that ALL Tire Kingdoms participate, so I believed it. When the buyer asked me if he could redeem his coupon anywhere, I told him yea. He didn't take my word for it. He called a Tire Kingdom next to where he lived (a few miles away from where we were) and was told that it DID NOT participate in the said promotion. That made me look and feel like crap. Immediately I felt guilty about all the other promotions I had sold by not knowingly deceiving prior customers. That was the last straw for me. I walked away. I hope that this company gets what's coming to them soon. Don't get sucked into this trap. I should have seen it coming too. I got the job way too easily for it to be legitimate. You can do better.

  • La
      7th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    What the original poster is complaining about is the business to business certificate sales subdivision, that employees nearly 10, 000 people, selling the promotions that Smart Circle has legitimately signed up. Of course, in an organization that large there are going to be complaints from the ones that can't cut it living on 100% commission. Google any insurance company out there and you will find the same complaints from those who can't sell. Smart Circle International has been around for 20 years and is a legit company providing a valuable service to the community.

  • Ma
      9th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    They are liers. Don't trust them. I just lost $350 because of them

  • N
      10th of Nov, 2008
    +1 Votes

    what exactly is that "valuable service"?

  • Da
      12th of Nov, 2008
    -4 Votes

    You guys are all full of s@#%... how can you say that this company is a scam. This is a legitimate business... the REAL problem that you guys have about it is that it's not for everybody.


    It's a shame all kids today want to do is sit around a table at Starbucks and design layouts of campaigns.

    If you want to do this fine, get in with an advertising company and start from the bottom for 5-10 years in the mailroom... or if you want an opportunity to run your own business in 6 mos. to 1 year, then join the opportunity that was afforded to you.

    Nothing is ever easy in life and anyone that told you sick people that it was... doesn't have a dime to their name!

    Thank you for your time!

  • Ye
      13th of Nov, 2008
    -1 Votes

    As a customer I really like Smart Circle. But have been sold these cards with some lies. Luckily living in Miami if there is not a location in the smart circle card next door it is within just a few miles. But overall th eproduct is good. you get a heck of a deal. I just dont like what the employees are submitted to inorder to sell. And therefore, passed on to customers. Shame on the owners of this company. I think Smart Circle International should be aware of this. I also ask myself what do the companies that promote their prdocuts through smart circle make out of this. Because whenever i use this card I feel like Im robbing the companies. Thanks ya'll

  • Da
      14th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    Daniel...I think the consensus here is that these companies have unethical practices. From their hiring methods to their selling methods. And who are you to talk about lazy people? most of the people that worked for the company that I interviewed with didnt even have a degree. Talk about taking the easy way out..these people should get off their lazy ### and get a good degree and work for a real company. I realize it is a legit business but so are multi-level marketing companies and they are looked down at. and good luck running your "business" in 6 months to a year. And what are you talking about starting at the bottom? I am the marketing director for a 30 million dollar company and I have only been in the field 3 years. I also enjoy my salary, bonuses, car allowance, 3 weeks vacation, 401k, trips over seas, and everything else "legit" companies offer. dont talk to me about lazy, have fun sitting outside starbucks selling coupons. I hope you feel better when you have your own company and you leverage uneducated individuals labor for your pipe dream.

    Thank you for you time!

  • La
      15th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    I'm in Atlanta Georgia and I worked for a company named "Full Circle Marketing" which also doubles under another name to market home improvement at home depot. I worked with this company for a total of three days there is no training and they have the worst organization ever the office is full of people that are under the age of 25 they act more like this is a party than a job. I was thrown out to the fire without a sales pitch and without any knowledge they told me I would become management in 6-10 months and open my own firm. I'm a college grad who has a bachelor's degree in Business management this place was a mess the walls were completed and the offices have not one piece of furniture. The person that was supposed to be training me was so busy trying to make his own money than training me then at the end of the night you come back to the office and ring a bell or hit a gong and bump chests to acknowledge there $150.00 accomplishments for the day. I have a degree why would I be happy about making $150.00 for the day while burning holes in my shoes to sell someone a product that is not going to save them money but I know will put them in debt. I tell anyone who is drawn in to be very aware of what they are getting into. Research the company online check all reviews and complaints the office I worked for has over 200 complaints and charges of sexual harassment and false advertisement.

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