I go to a church that is built on a simple but profound principle: help people take their next step in their spiritual journey. When you hear it explained, it’s a pretty powerful concept. The idea is that everyone, no matter where on their journey they are, has a next step to take. Everyone can progress. Everyone can still become more. In many ways, I feel like this is the underlying promise that every direct sales company offers. As an industry that celebrates personal development, what we … [Read more...]
What Norms Aren’t Worth Rushing Back to?
As we all do everything we can to rush back to normal, stop and consider what “normals” actually aren’t worth rushing back to. I heard this statement on a podcast recently. It’s not a podcast specific to direct sales, but it’s a statement that has haunted me over the last 10 days or so. As we navigate our way past the initial shock and awe of the pandemic, and now settle into figuring out what to do now, I think every strategic discussion should incorporate this question as its starting … [Read more...]
Are You Doing the Math for Your Distributors?
Today’s direct seller has more access to data and numbers than any generation of direct seller ever had before. Backoffices are packed with beautiful reports, dashboards are dotted with wonderful widgets and notifications, and promotions and programs are launched every day to accelerate sales and income. And yet, my experience tells me that Distributors don’t always appreciate all this stuff like I think they should. Some of the obvious perks of a new promotion often get overlooked. The … [Read more...]
Our Story Is Better Than Their Story. Are You Telling It?
From company announcements to proclamations from the investing world to regulatory agency decisions to even a TV series, there is no shortage of hot opinions and big news in the world of direct selling. As the old saying goes, “any news is good news.” But is that really true here? It seems the only news we’re getting falls in the “bad news” category. Further, the only opinions those of us in the industry are giving are just opinions and pontifications on that bad news. Maybe the reason it … [Read more...]
AdvoCare, Neora, an Ever More Aggressive FTC! What Now?
In recent weeks, the direct selling industry has been shocked by one revelation after another involving the Federal Trade Commission’s actions against direct selling companies. The stunning transformation of AdvoCare from a marketer with an MLM compensation plan to a single level plan due to an FTC enforcement action was still being absorbed when, BANG!, along comes the FTC action against Neora (formerly “Nerium”) and Jeff Olson and the counter civil suit by Olson and Neora challenging the FTC’s … [Read more...]
SCP Adds Events & Travel Incentive Planning with Karen Peterson
We are excited to announce a new member to the Stratgeic Choice Partners team, Karen Peterson! Karen is a Certified Meeting Professional with more than 30 years of experience working with direct selling companies. She has a proven ability to meet clients’ meeting objectives while managing the essential details of an event. Karen specializes in vendor relations, contract negotiations, meeting specifications, budget analysis, air and ground transportation, off-site entertainment and food & … [Read more...]
SCP Adds Graphic Design Services with Brooke Hawkins
Strategic Choice Partners is thrilled to add Brooke Hawkins as a new associate where she will bring marketing and graphic design expertise to the team. Brooke is the owner of Hawkins Design Co, a boutique design agency that specializes in marketing and graphic design, catered to direct sales companies. Brooke has worked with numerous companies using omnichannel marketing to help businesses develop a consistent and memorable brand across all platforms from social media to web design to print … [Read more...]
How to Create a Marketing Roadmap That Gets Results
Marketing and communications have never been more important within the direct sales industry than they are right now. While good marketing always has been a common thread among successful companies, it’s often been overlooked as a recognized driver, playing second fiddle to compensation plan design, product development, field training and the like. Today’s direct sales marketing leader has a lot on his or her plate. In a new way, the industry is recognizing the need to deliberately … [Read more...]
The Elephants in Direct Selling’s Room
No one likes having difficult conversations. But there comes a time when you can no longer ignore the proverbial “elephant in the room.” Well, guess what? That time has come for the direct selling industry. We need to face our most recent “elephant,” better known as “the gig economy.” So let’s take a moment to address this problem pachyderm. What is the Gig Economy? The gig economy is the general term that describes the ever-widening variety of non-employee income opportunities … [Read more...]
Without Trust You Can Kiss Success Goodbye!
Direct selling companies spend tens of thousands of dollars on equipment, marketing materials, product development and social media branding programs, but often squander or even neglect their most precious asset: the sales force's trust and belief. Over the years, working for, leading and advising more than 100 companies as a consultant, I came to learn that successful direct selling companies that excel for decades are very careful to maintain the field’s trust. Too often I have observed … [Read more...]
Rick Loy Joins Strategic Choice Partners!
With over 20 years as a Senior Executive for one of the nation’s leading direct selling companies, Rick Loy brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to Strategic Choice Partners. Rick Loy brings more than two decades of Field Development and Training Leadership to Direct Selling's Top Consulting Firm. From 1998 through 2019, Rick led the sales, training and field development efforts at AdvoCare, establishing what has long been revered as one of the most comprehensive Distributor … [Read more...]
What about the “Why” for your events?
Direct sellers love to talk about their “whys,” basically, the reason(s) they chose direct selling in general and their individual companies in particular. Recruiting and promoting are almost always framed in the context of understanding one’s “why.” And it’s a valid consideration. Basically, the “why” answers the question, “What’s my motivation for doing this?” Do your events deserve a "Why"? But what about your events? Don’t they deserve a “why” as well? The answer is, “Why yes, … [Read more...]
Most Technology Problems Are Not Actually Technology Problems
Having started my career in the direct selling industry in 2002, you can imagine the swift changes I’ve experienced in a relatively short period of time in how direct selling works. I’m sure many of you can say the same. As the model evolves and adapts, we found ourselves today rethinking components of direct selling that seemed like bedrocks of our business. Technology = Opportunity & Confusion At the forefront of these changes, you’ll find technology as an equal-opportunity … [Read more...]
The 7 Most Common Recommendations for Today’s Direct Selling Company
Every direct selling company thinks of itself as extremely unique. You probably feel that way about your company, too. Your product is one-of-a-kind. Your compensation plan has unique perks. Your founder offers both special privileges and special challenges. Your culture is special and unprecedented and unlike anything you’ve ever seen. And I bet that’s all true. I just bet it’s not as true as you think it is. My experience has shown me that direct selling companies have a lot more in common … [Read more...]
5 New Rules for Direct Selling Success
It used to be that choosing how you wanted to sell your products using a direct selling method was a fairly simple proposition. Direct sellers employed two basic selling approaches: one-on-one and one-to-many (usually referred to as “party plan”). The Most Recent Approach Then along came the vitamin and supplement companies who drove a new method of selling using a variation of subscription selling called “autoship.” While it seems common now, this approach was quite innovative … [Read more...]