May 2023 Direct Selling News

Page 76

DIRECT SELLING’S ROADMAP OF THE FUTURE

M

PRECISION POSITIONING PROVIDES THE RIGHT MESSAGING FOR EACH GENERATION

MAGNETIC CONTENT YOUR CUSTOMERS WILL LOVE THE RISE OF SHEIN AND TEMU ACN / 30 YEARS IS JUST THE BEGINNING NICE DE MEXICO / NICE & BELLA / HANDCRAFTED OPPORTUNITY

DSN DIRECT SELLING NEWS VOLUME 19 / ISSUE 4 MAY 2023 ZX

DSN hosts in-person Deep Dive events dedicated to future-forward topics that are trending in conversations across the channel. If it’s keeping executives up at night, it’s on the agenda.

Bring your strategic plans and questions to engage and interact with subject matter experts and your executive peers one-on-one including Q&A and networking opportunities.

This event’s limited capacity provides attendees with an interactive workshop experience.

DEEP DIVE EVENTS MAY 18 & 19, 2023 Exclusive New Direct Selling Generational Research 9:00 AM-3:00 PM (CST) 19 FRIDAY MAY Affiliate Model AI/ChatGPT 9:00 AM-4:00 PM (CST) 18 THURSDAY MAY BRANDON WHITE FILE FINDER STUART JOHNSON DSN JASON DORSEY CGK HEATHER CHASTAIN BRIDGEHEAD COLLECTIVE [ MORE SPEAKERS TO BE ANNOUNCED ] A DSN EXCLUSIVE

ABOUT

THE EVENT FLOWER MOUND, TX (NEAR DFW AIRPORT)

It’s a DSN exclusive two-day workshop-style event focused on three of the hottest topics in the channel:

1. The Rise of Affiliate Models

2. AI/ChatGPT and Language Learning Modules

3. New Exclusive Generational Research specific to Direct Selling developed by Bridgehead Collective

Limited seating capacity for 115 direct selling organization executives in a controlled and private location.

Team members of DSN Supporter companies can attend at no charge as part of your benefits.

Individual tickets: $995 per person for both events.

To register or purchase tickets, email events@directsellingnews.com or scan the code.

4 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 CONTENTS MAY 2023 80 IN EVERY ISSUE 6 AD INDEX // 9 FROM THE PUBLISHER // 11 INDUSTRY NEWS // 26 THE DSN GUIDE // 30 FORWARD THINKING // 95 DSA MESSAGE // 96 SUPPLIER DIRECTORY // FEATURES Magnetic Content BY
The Rise of Shein and Temu
Take it to the Next Level BY
Introducing the Direct Selling Disruptors Podcast
ACN 30 Years Is Just the Beginning BY
NICE de Mexico / NICE & BELLA A Handcrafted Opportunity BY JENNY VETTER 86 66 DEPARTMENTS FOR YOU / FOR YOUR FIELD / Your Essential Monthly Motivation BY CHELSEA
WORKING SMART / The Benefits of Headless Architecture
ICONIC INSIGHTS / Amy Blankson: Creating a Culture of Digital Wellness
36 44 60 68 74 80 74 90
DAVID LEE
BY LISA ROBERTSON
TONY JEARY
JENNY VETTER
HUGHES
BY SEAN SMITH
BY PAULA FELPS

DIRECT SELLING’S ROADMAP OF THE FUTURE

How Gen X, Millennials and Gen Z really feel about direct selling

Serving the Direct Selling and Network Marketing Executive Since 2004

A Direct Selling Partners Company

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2023 EVENTS

DEEP DIVE EVENTS

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Available at no charge to team members of DSN Supporter Companies

Tickets: $995 per person

Register by emailing events@directsellingnews.com

• Affiliate Model & AI/ChatGPT

Thursday, May 18 , 2023

• Exclusive!

New Direct Selling Generational Research by Heather Chastain, Bridgehead Collective and special guest, Jason Dorsey

Friday, May 19, 2023

FALL DSU

October 11 & 12 , 2023

Irving Convention Center, Irving, TX

DSN *Event locations, times and dates are subject to change without notice.
2023 DSU EVENTS SAVE THE DATES EVENTS

Speaking their language.

APRIL WAS QUITE A MONTH, AND DSU WAS ONE FOR THE RECORD BOOKS! We featured more first-time speakers and gave out more awards than ever before at the Global Celebration.

One of the most intriguing presentations from DSU was Heather Chastain’s overview of the generational research her company Bridgehead Collective did in conjunction with the Center for Generational Kinetics and its President Jason Dorsey. If you missed it, some of the same insights are shared in this month’s cover story. This information is not only surprising—it’s invaluable. No one has ever done this kind of generational research laser focused on direct selling before. We are thrilled to bring this research to you.

Later this month, DSN is hosting a two-day deep dive event where Heather and Jason will dive into the insights coming out of this research. In addition to the generational research, we will also have speakers covering AI and ChatGPT plus affiliate programs. These are three of the hottest topics impacting the channel, and we’ll cover all of them in two game-changing days! Find out how you can attend and what to expect on page two of this issue.

We’re continuing to bring you features each issue centered on digital selling. This month you’ll find an in-depth article on why content is king in social selling and discover what best resonates with today’s consumers. We also examine ecommerce giants Shein and Temu to see what direct selling companies can learn from their meteoric rise.

You’ll also find company spotlights on ACN and NICE de Mexico/NICE & BELLA. Both companies have enjoyed periods of growth and expansion—we’re excited to share their stories.

I invite you to check out the new Direct Selling Disruptors podcast, hosted by Blake Mallen, which launches this month. Find out more about this innovative new field-focused podcast on page 68.

DSN remains your daily resource for global news impacting the direct selling channel. If you haven’t yet, make sure to sign up for the weekly dashboard email which delivers a week’s worth of news in a quick 15-minute read each Sunday. You can also sign up for VIP text alerts so you’ll always get the channel’s top stories first, fast and free.

I’d like to thank all the speakers that shared their stories and insights at DSU—the energy and enthusiasm at this event was nothing short of inspiring! We’ll bring you a full recap in June’s issue, but for now congratulations to all the Bravo Award and Global 100 winners. It was wonderful to catch up with so many old friends and make quite a few new ones, too. We’re already planning on doing it all again October 11-12 at our Fall DSU event in Irving, Texas.

All the best,

directsellingnews.com 9 THANK YOU PLATINUM SUPPORTERS: / FROM THE PUBLISHER / Patricia White | Publisher | pwhite@directsellingnews.com @directsellingnews @DSNUpdate Follow our LinkedIn Page Text us 1+ (214) 239-3043
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The Month in News Affecting Our Channel 13 / Top 5 News Watch 14 / Recent Expansions 16 / Events 18 / Insights 20 / Executive Announcements 26 / The DSN Guide / INDUSTRY NEWS /
Learn More

HEADLINES > 5

n Natura &Co Sells Aesop to L’Oréal

n Isagenix to Transition Majority Ownership to Investors, Coover Family Maintains Minority Stake

n A mway China Invests Almost $90 M to Upgrade Production

n Vorwerk Celebrates 140th Anniversary

n Herbalife Raises $1.5 M to Nourish Underserved Children

directsellingnews.com 13

RECENT EXPANSIONS

OMNILIFE USA BREAKS GROUND ON TEXAS HEADQUARTERS

Omnilife USA, Inc., the subsidiary of Grupo Omnilife S.A. De C.V. in Jalisco, Mexico, has begun construction on its new corporate office, warehouse and manufacturing plant located in Allen, Texas.

“This project represents one of our most exciting ventures to date,” the company wrote in a statement. “The new premises will strengthen our efficiency, production and distribution capacity here in the United States as well as globally, enhancing our customer experience by serving all our distributors with a quality product and excellent service.”

The new Texas headquarters is expected to be fully operational by Q2 2024.

QNET LAUNCHES OPERATIONS IN SOUTH AFRICA

QNET announced its official expansion into South Africa, a region that is already home to more than one million direct selling representatives and is a growing market that saw $759 million in retail sales last year, according to the WFDSA.

“QNET has been in Asia for 25 years and in Africa for over 20 years now,” said QNET Regional General Manager for Sub‑Saharan Africa, Biram Fall. “QNET aims to empower local entrepreneurs by providing them with high quality products, tools and support to succeed in the ever changing ecommerce and direct selling ecosystem.”

14 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023
/ INDUSTRY NEWS / EXPANSIONS
SOUTH AFRICA TEXAS

ZINZINO LAUNCHES OPERATIONS IN TURKEY

Zinzino announced its official expansion into Turkey. The company pointed to the 24 percent increase in retail sales volume generated by direct sellers in Turkey in the last two years as one of the deciding factors in this expansion, as well as the country’s efficient banking system and reliable internet and GSM infrastructure.

“In the face of very difficult times, offering hope is essential,” said Dag Bergheim, Zinzino Chief Executive Officer. “We want to open up new opportunities for the people of

Turkey, and support those affected by the earthquake. With our launch in Turkey, we can humbly offer a platform for direct selling entrepreneurs looking to make a living in the wake of the staggering unemployment rates that have followed this devastating situation. Zinzino’s robust and long term business model with a sustainable, customer‑centric approach will send our Turkish distributors well on their way to success in a market that has already favored direct sales for decades. Together we can create a brighter future.”

QUIARI OPENS DISTRIBUTION CENTER IN UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

QuiAri launched a new distribution center in UAE, which the company expects will improve shipping and logistics processes for residents in the region, as well as open up new opportunities for nearby distributors.

“People all over the world, including the Middle East, need help improving the quality of their health and an opportunity to earn extra income,” said Bob Reina, QuiAri Founder and Chief Executive Officer. “We’re happy to announce that, effective immediately, UAE residents and surrounding countries will receive faster shipping, as QuiAri products, including our new anti aging gel supplement, QuiAri Prime, will be stocked in the distribution center.”

directsellingnews.com 15
TURKEY UAE

4Life Leads

Two-Day Service Trip to Colombia 4

LIFE’S PHILANTHROPIC organization, Foundation 4Life, directed a two-day service trip to Colombia with 60 4Life employees and affiliates to rebuild a community center for the children of Cazucá in Bogotá, Colombia.

This new Foundation 4Life recreational area features a playground and gymnasium and will serve more than 400 children.

“At Foundation 4Life, we want to break the cycle of poverty, and we do that through helping children,” said Jenna Lisonbee, Foundation 4Life Director. “If these kids can focus on their schoolwork and physical health, they can build a better life for themselves and start a positive cycle for generations to come. This project is close to David and Bianca’s hearts.”

MONAT Raises $25,000 t hrough Cancun 5K

MONAT GLOBAL Corp held its sixth annual More than a Race 5K in Cancun, Mexico, raising more than $25,000 for underserved youth. Proceeds will benefit the youth education grants program facilitated by MONAT’s philanthropic arm, MONAT Gratitude Foundation, along with a local nonprofit, Keeping Kids in School Project, which serves students in Mexico.

More than 3,000 MONAT distributors participated in the race.

“Every step we take in the race not only brings us closer to the finish line, but also to a brighter future for youth everywhere,” said Lu Urdaneta, MONAT Global Chief Culture Officer and MONAT Gratitude Foundation Chief Executive Officer. “In addition to bringing together leaders of our independent salesforce, this race serves a bigger purpose by helping improve outcomes for youth in our communities. I’m proud of our participants for doing good for themselves and the community.”

To date, the MONAT Gratitude Foundation has donated more than $600,000 to more than 40 youth education programs through a $1 million pledge grant program begun in 2022.

16 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023
/ INDUSTRY NEWS / EVENTS
EVENTS

Herbalife Hosts LA Convention for First Time in Three Years

HERBALIFE HELD ITS ANNUAL leadership training and recognition conference inperson and in Los Angeles, California for the first time in three years. The event hosted more than 3,000 independent distributor leaders and began with a keynote address from Herbalife Chairman and CEO Michael O. Johnson.

“These are exciting times for us; we’re coming back bold, innovative, reenergized and ready to continue building the path to be the world’s premier health and wellness company and community,” Johnson said. “I came back to this company because I’m passionate about who we are, what we do, and the opportunity we provide—I truly believe our future is bright beyond compare.”

Tranont Celebrates 10th Anniversary

TRANONT HOSTED a three-day convention in Salt Lake City, Utah to celebrate its tenth anniversary.

The highlight of the event was the unveiling of the next step in the company’s international expansion strategy: launching operations in Belgium.

“Changing life for good drives our purpose, and being able to meet in person with those who have firsthand experience with improved health, better managed wealth and a sense of community means everything to us,” said Scott Bland, Tranont President and Owner. “We’ve impacted 16 million in our first ten years, but we won’t stop until we’ve reached 1 billion lives for good and beyond.”

The event welcomed almost 650 people from the U.S., Canada, United Kingdom and Belgium. DSN

directsellingnews.com 17

California Upholds Prop 22’s Independent Contractor Status for Gig Workers

CALIFORNIA’S COURT OF APPEAL HAS UPHELD

A LAW that classifies gig workers as independent contractors rather than employees.

In November 2020, Proposition 22 was passed in California, exempting gig work-based businesses from state labor laws that would require them to treat all hired workers as employees and provide them with benefits. Tech giants like Uber, Lyft, DoorDash and Instacart are reported to have

spent a collective $200 million on a campaign that helped pass the original ballot measure.

In 2021, the law was ruled unconstitutional by a California judge. This new appeal overturned that ruling, except for a portion that discussed the California Legislature’s authority.

The ruling is a significant win for companies that rely on gig workers, but opponents say the law leaves workers without protections. DSN

18 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023
For the full articles, visit directsellingnews.com/ insights / INDUSTRY NEWS / INSIGHTS
INSIGHTS

Study Shows Entrepreneurship Improves Work-L ife Balance for Women, Even Amid Challenges

OFFICE DEPOT’S SECOND ANNUAL WOMEN’S SMALL BUSINESS SURVEY, which polled 1,000 women small business owners, found that 70 percent of women enjoyed being their own boss above all, a four percent increase from last year. Among respondents, 73 percent also reported that their work-life balance had actually improved since opening their business. This benefit is not without challenges. Almost a quarter of women small business owners said they experience concerns with fatigue (23 percent) and one in six reported feeling stressed out every day. The logistics of running a business were also draining, with 13 percent saying they struggle to find employees and would benefit from having marketing

materials (35 percent), networking tools or platforms (34 percent) and access to office supplies (25 percent).

The fear of not having enough funding went down for respondents since last year, but is still a concern at 42 percent. One in five women small business owners have invested more than $5,000 of their own capital in at-home equipment and tools, including laptops (36 percent), printers (35 percent) and software (24 percent).

Still, women entrepreneurs are resilient and have high expectations for success in the new year, including growing profit (59 percent), gaining more clients (53 percent) and expanding their business (28 percent). DSN

directsellingnews.com 19

EXECUTIVE ANNOUNCEMENTS

For the full articles, visit directsellingnews.com/ announcements

Awakend welcomed Justin Rose as the company’s new president. Rose has three decades of experience as an industry leader, working with multi-billion-dollar companies and holding C-Suite executive positions within well-known direct selling brands.

“We are honored to have someone of Justin’s caliber and tremendous track record of experience join our movement at Awakend,” said Rodney James, Awakend Founder and Chief Executive Officer. “A seasoned and highly talented executive, Justin’s leadership complements both the corporate side and the field in equal measure. His understanding of building a strong foundation that’s able to pivot as needed to encourage large-scale growth is unparalleled.”

Sunrider International has appointed Dirk Hobgood to the role of Chief Financial Officer. Hobgood brings more than two decades of experience working with private and public global companies in the manufacturing, distribution and consumer products industries, as well as CFO experience within the direct selling channel and C-Suite experience in private equity and family-owned companies.

“We are thankful to have Dirk on board as a member of our executive team,” said Sunny Beutler, Sunrider Chief Executive Officer. “He brings a wealth of leadership experience and has an exciting vision for our financial operations. I know Dirk’s strategic thinking and expertise in financial planning will help our company achieve both our short- and longterm financial goals.”

Luminex Home Décor & Fragrance announced the appointment of Lori H. Gonzalez to the role of Chief Executive Officer. Gonzalez brings 25 years of experience in the consumer products industry, as well as experience working in strategy development, P&L management, consumer intelligence and marketing, trade and retail management, product development, ecommerce and direct-to-consumer, deal sourcing and integration, supply chain and manufacturing.

“Those who know me well can appreciate my love for home fragrance products to create a spa experience wherever you are,” Gonzalez wrote in an online post.

“I’m delighted to have joined the team and am looking forward to driving growth and continuing the legacy for years to come.”

20 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023
/ INDUSTRY NEWS / EXECUTIVE ANNOUNCEMENTS
JUSTIN ROSE PRESIDENT, AWAKEND
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Arbonne International announced Jen Orlando’s return to its executive team as the Chief Growth & Innovation Officer. Orlando previously held the title of Chief Sales Officer for Arbonne from 20192021 and brings more than 18 years of experience in sales and marketing.

In this new role, Orlando will oversee all global sales and markets and drive program development and customerfocused strategies that continue to enhance the company’s digital and experiential model.

Medical Marijuana, Inc., the parent company of direct selling organization Kannaway, announced that Dr. Timothy R. Scott has been appointed to the role of Chief Executive Officer, President and Chairman of the Board. Scott has been a member of the company’s board since 2015 and previously served as Chief People Officer in an advisory role.

Scott succeeds Blake N. Schroeder, who will continue to serve on the boards for the company’s portfolio investments and provide advisory services for Neuropathix.

Plexus Worldwide announced the appointment of Genevieve Skory to the executive role of Chief Field Development Officer.

Skory joined Plexus in 2018 as Director of Ambassador Training and has since served in additional roles, including Vice President of Sales and Training. In this newly created role, Skory will help amplify the company’s vision for growth and field development, motivate sales teams and lead global sales strategy implementation.

EXP REALTY STRENGTHENS CANADIAN LEADERSHIP TEAM

EXp Realty announced three strategic executive hires as it continues to fortify its Canadian leadership team.

John Tsai has been appointed to the role of President of eXp Realty Canada. Tsai has more than 15 years of real estate experience and is ranked in the top one percent as the number 10 realtor in the Greater Vancouver area.

Nadia Habib has been promoted to Vice President of Growth and will continue to focus on attraction and retention. Habib has 15 years of leadership experience in acquisition, growth, training and retention across residential, commercial and luxury markets.

Nathalie Goodyer has been promoted to Vice President of Operations. Goodyer has more than a decade of experience as a realtor and growth director within both traditional and luxury brokerage teams. She will now focus on improving the lives of Canadian eXp Realty agents.

22 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 / INDUSTRY NEWS / EXECUTIVE ANNOUNCEMENTS
GENEVIEVE SKORY CHIEF FIELD DEVELOPMENT OFFICER, PLEXUS JEN ORLANDO CHIEF GROWTH & INNOVATION OFFICER, ARBONNE DR. TIMOTHY R. SCOTT CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, MEDICAL MARIJUANA

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Recently launched Partner.Co announced two key appointments to its executive team. Darren Zobrist will serve as Chief Executive Officer. Zobrist began his career on Wall Street but later formed an international cooperative that provides a sustainable livelihood for tens of thousands of fishermen in 13 countries and is the largest distributor of sushi-quality tuna in the U.S. “Throughout my career, I’ve learned that there is more than just the bottom line,” Zobrist said. “To be truly successful, you must think about others and ways that you can help them, too.”

John Wadsworth, Jr. will serve as the company’s Chief Brand Partner Officer. Previously, Wadsworth worked with Tahitian Noni, a member of the company’s community of brands, and built relationships across markets in 30 countries. He will now focus on building a culture and company that is a reflection of the mission behind Partner. Co.

LG H&H ANNOUNCES HISTORIC LEADERSHIP CHANGES

LG H&H Americas, the parent company of Avon, announced that Hyeyoung Moon has been appointed Chief Executive Officer. This is the first time in company history that a woman has held this role.

Moon will now oversee all of LG H&H America’s businesses, which includes Avon. Previously, Moon held senior executive roles at Amazon Business and Starbucks.

“I am honored to lead LG H&H Americas,” Moon said. “I look forward to working alongside our many talented teams to pave the way for growth and success driving a new era of innovation in the beauty and personal care space.”

LG H&H also announced Liza Maldonado will now lead the U.S. Avon field sales organization as the Head of Direct Selling for the U.S., Puerto Rico and Caribbean. In this role, Maldonado will align business trends with customer needs. Maldonado brings 25 years of leadership experience, including her most recent position as General Manager for Avon Puerto Rico and Caribbean.

“I’m excited for the opportunity to lead the Avon social selling business in North America,” said Maldonado. “My biggest responsibility is to make sure that all of our Avon Representatives have an extraordinary experience that encourages them to grow within their aspirations.” DSN

24 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 / INDUSTRY NEWS / EXECUTIVE ANNOUNCEMENTS
PARTNER.CO APPOINTS SENIOR LEADERSHIP TEAM

Joni Rogers-Kante credits her commitment to consistency, devotion to family, and abiding faith to achieving success as a business and family woman. Joni has paved a path toward a life of abundance, and she devotes her life to empower others to find theirs, too.

For Joni, her company SeneGence stands for more than its cutting-edge and highly desirable beauty products. Its causedriven purpose is to promote more women

in business and care for communities in need through its nonprofit. Not only has Joni built a rewarding global business, she is also changing lives closer to home. Joni passionately protects rights of independent entrepreneurs in the direct selling industry and works to improve the economic lifeblood in her home state of Oklahoma.

Joni believes accomplishment is unique for everyone, and we are all here with

our own important purpose. She says a fulfilling life is made with the four E’s: Earn, Evaluate, Evolve, and Explore. When we value and respect each other, we will all move forward together.

We are proud to partner with Joni and those like her who consistently prove that hard work and courage are rewarded with limitless possibilities. After all, people are our greatest strength.

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THE GUIDE NEW IN 2023:

A CURATED RESOURCE TO HELP YOU FIND STRATEGIC BUSINESS PARTNERS SPECIALIZING IN DIRECT SELLING.

THE CHANNEL IS EVOLVING RAPIDLY—companies and executives must stay ahead of emerging trends and technologies to build for the future. But it can be time - consuming and hard to find the right suppliers to partner with.

That’s why we’ve developed The DSN Guide. In each issue, The Guide includes curated lists by category of expertise and service. These suppliers currently serve the channel—they understand the unique challenges and opportunities that come with direct selling and can help you implement your intiatives.

2023 ISSUE CATEGORY

JUNE DISTRIBUTION, FULFILLMENT AND LOGISTICS

JULY/AUGUST SOFTWARE, TECHNOLOGY AND SOCIAL MEDIA SOLUTIONS

SEPTEMBER EVENT PRODUCTION

OCTOBER INCENTIVES AND RECOGNITION

NOVEMBER CREDIT CARD AND PAYMENT PROCESSING SOLUTIONS

DECEMBER CONSULTING AND EXECUTIVE SEARCH

26 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 > / INDUSTRY NEWS / THE DSN GUIDE

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ADI Meetings & Events Tempe, AZ adimeetings.com

CSI International Cary, NC edestinations.com

Celebrity Cruises Miami, FL celebritycorporatekit.com

Phil Cochrane 212-287-7261 pcochrane@icentiviz.com

Agnes Fasano 800-722-5934 afasano@celebrity.com

Would you like to be included in The DSN Guide? Contact Jerilyn Taylor (jtaylor@directsellingnews.com) for more information. Companies featured in The Guide have been in business for a minimum of two years and are verified to be working with direct selling companies. Companies appearing in The Guide are not endorsed by DSN. The Guide is provided strictly as a resource. It is each company's responsibility to verify and investigate providers and services.

directsellingnews.com 27 COMPANY WEBSITE ADDITIONAL CONTACT INFORMATION
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{ } THIS
ISSUE’S FEATURED CATEGORY
“All Included” applies to sailings booked and departing on or after January 09, 2023, excluding Galapagos cruises, in an inside, ocean view, veranda, or Concierge Class, stateroom (“Eligible Bookings”). All guests within an Eligible Booking who choose “All Included” pricing, as well as, guests booked in an AquaClass® Stateroom, will receive a Classic Drinks Package, Tips Included, and an unlimited Basic Wi-Fi package. All guests in The Retreat will receive a Premium Drinks Package, Tips Included, OBC and an unlimited Premium Wi-Fi Package. All guests in the same stateroom must choose the same rate. Visit celebrity.com/allincluded for complete details. ©2023 Celebrity Cruises Inc. Ships’ registry: Malta and Ecuador. CALL - - - | VISIT CELEBRITYCORPORATEKIT COM OR CONTACT YOUR TRAVEL ADVISOR There are so many reasons to choose Celebrity Cruises® including destinations and stunning ships that represent the ultimate in luxury travel with drinks, Wi-Fi, and tips All IncludedSM. Whether you want to host a meeting, offer incentive trips, or hold any other corporate event on board one of our revolutionary ships, our Corporate Sales Managers will make it easy to create a fully customized package on the right ship with event spaces and AV equipment included along with sailing dates and to -night itineraries that best suit your company’s specific needs. Contact us today to learn why planners trust Celebrity Cruises to organize their sales incentive trips and company gatherings. ELEVATE YOUR INCENTIVES AND REVOLUTIONIZE YOUR RETREATS

The Rise of Live Online Shopping

How real-time online videos are reshaping ecommerce.

WITH LIVESTREAM SELLING:

60 % IMPROVED SHOPPING EXPERIENCE

SOMETIMES, shopping trends come full circle. The TV shopping experiences many of us remember on QVC or Home Shopping Network may be old hat, but live shopping is back in a huge way. In fact, it could direct ecommerce in the coming years, and savvy direct selling companies are figuring out how to implement it into their marketing efforts Amazon, eBay, Shopify and Walmart are just a few enormous brands that have launched full live shopping platforms of their own. Amazon Live, for example, allows sellers to live-stream product demonstrations; interact with consumers and followers; and brand themselves as experts. There is even an official Amazon Creator app—an all-in-one tool for sellers to broadcast, chat and sell.

Customers get to see products in action while getting educated in authentic ways. It’s a more genuine experience than traditional advertising or “push marketing.” Instead, customers are part of a more valuable and entertaining experience while feeling part of a community. Today’s ecommerce

10x

HIGHER CONVERSION RATES

4 EYE-OPENING LIVESTREAM SHOPPING STATS

1/ The livestream shopping market will be worth $68 billion by 2026.

2/ Companies using livestream selling see conversion rates 10 times higher than the average ecommerce conversion rate.

3/ 35% of U.S. consumers bought a product after watching a livestream shopping event.

4/ A Klarna report says that 60% of shoppers said a livestream event improved their shopping experience.

Sources: Coresight Research, McKinsey & Company, Statista, Klarna

30 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 FORWARD THINKING / T HE RISE OF LIVE ONLINE SHOPPING

customers want authenticity. They want to trust the people they buy from, and that is built through honest reviews and demonstrations. Customers want, at some level, a relationship. Many sellers and influencers go live from their own living rooms, creating a more intimate experience.

“We know that the vast majority of Gen Z consumers say that they now use social media as their first stop for shopping inspiration because they

LIVE SHOPPING IS PROJECTED TO ACCOUNT FOR UP TO

20% OF ALL DIGITAL SHOPPING IN 2023.

have built trust with these people online,” said Daniel Debow, VP of Product for Shopify in a CNBC report. Nearly two-thirds of all consumers in China say they purchased products through live shopping in 2022, while 78 percent of U.S. consumers say they have never even watched a live shopping stream, according to the same report. But just because the U.S. dramatically trails China doesn’t mean the trend is not sharply on the rise.

directsellingnews.com 31

SOCIAL MEDIA APPS

RELATED TO SHOPPING:

38% 6% 7%

22%

Forbes shared that live worldwide ecommerce sales are projected to exceed $500 billion in the next five years, and live shopping is projected to account for up to 20 percent of all digital shopping in 2023. While the buying experience is easy and fast with just a few clicks on a phone or laptop, a Forbes article points out that convenience isn’t the core factor driving this trend.

“The key, perhaps surprisingly, isn’t necessarily the shopping,” the article explained. “Rather, it’s the entertainment, the fun, the interest and the engagement that an interesting and passionate influencer brings to a space. And if it happens to be one you care about, and the product happens to interest you, you might just click the buy button.”

Social platforms running dedicated live shopping features have sputtered in the last year. Facebook shut down its live shopping feature, which included product tabs and lists, in October 2022 to focus more on Reels. Instagram followed suit by killing the ability to tag products in live broadcasts mid-March. That doesn’t mean users can’t use video or other features to sell on the platforms. Posts, Stories, Reels and ads can still be utilized.

27%

TikTok and YouTube, however, look to battle it out to become the social platform of choice for live shopping. GlobalData’s Social Media Analytics Platform researched influencers to determine the most-discussed social media app related to shopping. TikTok was number one with a 38 percent share, followed by YouTube (27 percent), Pinterest (22 percent), Instagram (7 percent) and Snapchat (6 percent).

TikTok says its users are almost twice as likely to have purchased products that they see on the app, and that 67 percent of users say TikTok inspires them to shop even if they didn’t mean to do so. Shopping features include a personalized shop tab, in-app order tracking, product pages with reviews and the ability for customers to enter coupons shared during live streams. YouTube’s approach is similar; they even partnered with Shopify in 2022 so users could click and buy without ever leaving YouTube.

Customers adapting to the live online shopping experience should be good news to direct sellers who are turning more and more to online platforms to promote their business and build customer relationships. DSN

Source: GlobalData’s Social Media Analytics Platform TikTok and YouTube look to battle it out to become the social platform of choice for live shopping.
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How Corporate Retreats Are Changing

INCENTIVE TRIPS have long been a core element of the direct selling industry, but what about the corporate employees? Corporate retreats are undergoing a facelift with the changing work environment.

most retreats is two to three days, but many are extending up to four days, including some hybrid working activities.

ON AVERAGE, many companies are redirecting money once used for office space expenses for more employee events and trips.

According to Zippia, an estimated 36.2 million American employees will work remotely by 2025, with 26 percent of U.S. employees already fully remote as of 2022. Retreats are now being used to bring together in-office and remote staff. Many companies are redirecting money once used for office space expenses for more employee events and trips.

“With remote work the new standard and employees less than enthusiastic to get back into the office, the need to reconnect via offsites and retreats has become even more important, with concentrated interaction being just as effective as spending days together in an office,” according to a BizBash article.

Mental and physical well-being moved to the forefront of employee priorities over the past few years, so action-based retreats focusing on mindfulness and physical activities are trending. They’re also getting longer. The average for

In a Skift.com article, Chase Warrington, an executive at Doist, detailed a “50/30/20” formula for his company’s retreats. “Fifty percent is free time and relaxing; 30 percent coordinated fun activities; and 20 percent work,” he said. “You get that professional aspect, but it’s not the other way round. It’s a nice balance, and it works well for me.”

“It is such an important part of every company culture in this hybrid world, as organizations focus on taking care of their employees,” shared Katharine Sharpstone, managing director of Trip Tribe Wellness in a Hubspot article. “Both employees and clients are demanding wellness to be a major part of the agenda as it makes their employees more productive, and it helps to build deep meaningful relationships with their clients.”

There is a negative side to corporate retreats. Some employees can see it as a forced vacation away from family. Whatever your stance on the length and balance of your corporate retreats, remember that fun, relaxing and rewarding experiences aren’t just for field. No matter how you plan your team-building activities or retreats, don’t forget your home office employees DSN

34 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 FORWARD THINKING / H OW CORPORATE RETREATS ARE CHANGING
50 % 30 % 20 % FREE TIME/RELAXING FUN ACTIVITIES WORK

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MAGNETIC CONTENT

SIX DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER STRATEGIES THAT BUILD LOYALTY.

IRECT-TO-CONSUMER (DTC) COMPANIES succeed at the crossroads of agility, loyalty and authenticity. That’s why their content strategy focuses on building genuine relationships with customers who truly want to be part of the brand. Today’s customers are used to buying directly from brands without the middleman of mass retail stores. The customer feels more catered to because they are. DTC companies can bypass the traditional PR firms and media gatekeepers and talk directly to customers. They turn push marketing into attraction marketing. They have complete control of telling their own story, and they can tell it many different ways through multiple channels.

36 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 MAGNETIC CONTENT DIGITAL SELLING TRENDS
D

BUILDING LOYALTY can require a multi‑faceted content strategy focused on relationships, education and

www.directsellingnews.com 37

“THE BENEFITS OF DTC MARKETING are clear: through this direct relationship, these companies are creating strong relationships with their consumers, understanding them better and reaching a more specific, appropriate audience,” says Hubspot. “DTC brands eliminate the hassle of researching, browsing and choosing from hundreds of options, making shopping practically effortless.”

Building loyalty can require a multi-faceted content strategy focused on relationships, education and authenticity. Here are six effective approaches to glean from DTC brands.

1Authentic Behind-the-Scenes Videos

Being genuine is the name of the game with behind-the-scenes (BTS) videos. These peel back the curtain and invite customers into intimate parts of the business, making them feel part of the brand. Successful BTS videos are more informal, personable and are often funny and humble—many often reveal some genuine struggles. These can include product manufacturing and teasing new releases; messages from founders and CEOs; casual in-office activities; live tours; and on-the-spot employee interviews. The raw nature of BTS videos creates a more authentic connection between DTC businesses and their customers.

MAGNETIC CONTENT DIGITAL SELLING TRENDS

Origin USA, co-founded by former Navy Seal and leadership trainer Jocko Willink, produces martial arts uniforms and durable workwear such as boots and jeans. Everything is sourced and made in America. Their motto is “Made in America. No compromise.” The company’s videos focus on accomplishments with sourcing and manufacturing high-quality products by American workers. They are often short, personable and to the point, showing the impact on local community and reactions to the quality of the products. Company executives and employees are featured in videos talking about the importance of revitalizing American manufacturing.

As a Marketing Revolution article pointed out, “You need to be authentic in what you promise customers. This means stating a clear mission, then following through on that mission. This will help customers feel like they’re not just buying a product but working toward a greater goal.” BTS videos are highly effective at communicating that message.

2An Omnichannel Strategy

It’s never been easier to publish content in multiple forms to speak to different audiences. It just takes commitment to a strategy. Successful DTC companies often repurpose the same message or campaign for multiple platforms such as YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and TikTok. Each channel has its unique way of attracting followers and encouraging interaction. Tagging products in Facebook and Instagram posts is still an effective approach for many DTC businesses, especially when the content is more natural and less “sales-y.” This strategy also helps companies focus on building the brand and connecting with customers instead of pushing products.

ANOTHER

GROWING

TREND is being a guest or sponsor on podcasts. These typically have targeted, captivated and highly loyal audiences who trust the podcasters.

THREE KEY TAKEAWAYS

1 / TELL A STORY—DON’T PUSH A PRODUCT

In order to build a brand, you need to explain your brand. You can do that by introducing who you are and what your mission is—give customers a reason to believe in the brand first.

2 / STRAIGHT UP: VERTICAL VIDEOS ARE KEY

The most popular online videos are getting shorter and shorter, and thanks to TikTok and Instagram Reels, vertically oriented videos are very customer friendly.

3 / TEXT IS THE ULTIMATE LOW-HANGING FRUIT

Utilize texts to send exclusive offers and welcome new customers. Texts are simple, fast and improve the shopping experience. Add images, GIFs or short videos for even more impact.

“An omnichannel presence ensures that when your target consumers choose to engage with branded messaging, your product or service is readily available in the moment; regardless of channel,” shared Marketing Revolution. “In addition to being available, marketers need to build connections with consumers through branding efforts that create lasting, loyal customers. This is why we have seen a shift in campaigns to emphasize brand over products.”

Another growing trend is being a guest or sponsor on podcasts. These typically have targeted, captivated and highly loyal audiences who trust the podcasters. It’s a great way for company founders and leaders to tell their story and attract customers. Many podcasters only allow sponsors from products and services they use themselves, increasing the authenticity of the relationship.

directsellingnews.com 39

A PEEK BEHIND THE CURTAIN

VIDEOWORKS SUGGESTS SEVEN EFFECTIVE BEHIND-THE-SCENES VIDEO CONTENT IDEAS.

1/ CAPTURE THE RAW EVERY DAY

KEY POINT: Customers want to feel connected to a brand. They want to see what supporting your business means for the people running and working within the brand.

2/ GIVE EXCITING UPDATES

KEY POINT: Incorporating sneak peeks and progress reports into the process before the launch of a new product or service increases engagement.

3/ GIVE A TOUR

KEY POINT: This is a valuable marketing tool that gives customers a closeup of the dynamic of your brand and makes them feel like insiders.

4/ GET CREATIVE AND SHOW OFF

KEY POINT: Showcasing your products needs to be exciting. Interesting transitions, music and creative backdrops can make all the difference.

5/ HAVE A Q AND A OR FIRE ROUND

KEY POINT: Both video ideas are a great way to get a deeper sense of what your viewers want to know about your brand and what parts of your brand intrigues them.

6/ FOLLOW THE TRENDS

KEY POINT: Whether it’s a trending song or humorous insights into the struggles of running a business, this gives you a chance of reaching a new audience by appearing on people’s FYP (for you page).

7/ SHOW THE HIGHS…AND THE LOWS

KEY POINT: Showcasing the struggles and the resilience of your business appeals to the humanity in your viewers. People admire brands that get through the hurdles.

3Be a Storyteller

One of the best ways to build a brand is the tried-and-true strategy of telling compelling stories. DTC companies have the flexibility to tell their own stories without going through the traditional public relations channels and media gatekeepers.

Away, a luxury luggage company, took preorders before launching and combined the strategy with the release of an inspirational book titled The Places We Return To. Founders Steph Korey and Jen Rubio interviewed more than 40 creatives for the book such as writers, artists and photographers about their travel experiences. It was sold along with a gift card redeemable for a suitcase. The initial product line was sold out before it released, and the company reached $12 million in sales in the first year.

“Storytelling is a central part of our marketing strategy,” Korey said in a Shopify blog. “We think about what stories we can feed to the press and to social media—things that make people take notice, things people want to share and talk about. You don’t push your product. You create things that are fun to talk about, to write about, to share.”

The company leverages social media to encourage travel or posting funny scenarios instead of directly promoting products. For example, asking followers to post a GIF of their favorite movie to watch on a flight, or a tweet explaining why you need 17 pairs of underwear for a four-day trip.

Short, Vertical Videos

Even with the growing trend of longform podcasts that can run for one to two hours or more, the most popular and engaging online videos are getting shorter and shorter. With the rise of TikTok and Instagram Reels, people are more used to watching vertically oriented videos on their mobile device. Behind-the-scenes, employee profiles, product demos and various user-generated content are some of the most effective for DTC companies. Combining videos with a short music clip or voiceover adds to the appeal.

Bombas is a social impact company that began selling socks and matching donations to the homeless and underprivileged communities. They have grown to include other essentials such as underwear and T-shirts. The company’s short social media videos include a “Three Good Things” monthly message focusing on accomplishments and the people positively impacted. Employee shoutouts highlight volunteer hours, and other videos even teach followers how to make their own “care kits” out of sandwich bags and travel-size personal hygiene products.

The mission is woven into the message of the content. Videos are authentic and unpolished, as if you took out your phone and started recording what you saw. They are in the moment, inviting and show their commitment to the mission.

40 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 MAGNETIC CONTENT DIGITAL SELLING TRENDS
4

LEVERAGING

customer content takes the guesswork out of what you should create and builds stronger relationships with customers who are proud to represent your brand.

Leverage Customer Content

No matter what business you’re in, your customers are online every day letting you know what they want by the posts they make and the content they engage with. Leveraging customer content takes the guesswork out of what you should create and builds stronger relationships with customers who are proud to represent your brand.

Popular customer content for DTC brands includes unboxing videos; product reviews; trying on products; encouraging hashtags to increase brand awareness; and sharing customer posts to continue the conversation.

“One of the tactics is to allow customers to test new products and then share their experience on social media before committing to a purchase,” according to an article by Profitwell.com.

Well-known DTC company Warby Parker noticed customers were taking pictures and videos of their eyewear, asking friends how they looked. The company started asking customers to post the content on social media with the hashtag #WarbyHomeTryon. Participating customers were paired with an online personal stylist. The company discovered that customers who shared content online were 50 percent more likely to purchase.

A Text Will Do Ya

According to Tech Jury, 75 percent of clients want to receive offers via SMS text, and Mobile Monkey says nine in 10 people open their text messages. Savvy DTC brands are utilizing texts more and more to send exclusive offers, welcome new customers or even send an impromptu thank you. Texts are often limited to 160 characters, so they’re simple to consume, and they make for a seamless mobile shopping experience. To enhance and entertain, consider adding images, GIFs or short video clips. Even restaurants are beginning to take orders via text.

Some DTC websites offer SMS as a lead-capture option, and customers are often sent a first-time purchase discount. The focus is on quick access to a discount or enrolling in a rewards club—no need to fill out a lot of forms asking for a bunch of personal information. Not all texts are offer-based. Some are personalized such as wishing customers happy birthday; thanking them for their recent order; and updating them on items they are interested in. DSN

directsellingnews.com 41
6 5

BECOME A DSN SUPPORTER

OUR CHANNEL IS AT A PIVOTAL MOMENT IN TIME

When one company succeeds, the entire channel benefits. It’s with that sensibility in mind that we developed the DSN Supporter Program in 2022 and welcomed dozens of companies, representing billions in cumulative revenue, committed to helping this channel grow and enhance its relevancy.

Our mission is to serve, educate and edify the channel as the daily resource for breaking global news, emerging trends and powerful stories. With DSN, it’s easy for direct selling executives to stay informed, engaged and always one step ahead.

Your support helps DSN continue to provide relevant information, exposure, edification and education for companies and executives to help evolve the channel forward for the global community.

I appreciate DSN’s tireless work to report the news around direct selling, but also how they share the positive stories surrounding it. DSN is a reputable and powerful voice that always strives to edify the channel and highlight the direct selling companies that are doing the right things.

*For a complete list of benefits by level, visit directsellingnews.com.

THANK YOU TO OUR DSN SUPPORTERS! TO LEARN MORE about exclusive DSN Supporter Program Benefits and how you can become a part of the DSN family of Supporters, visit directsellingnews.com/supporter or contact support@directsellingnews.com The news you need. The name you trust. DSN DIRECT SELLING NEWS In order to protect the integrity of the Supporter Program for all participants, DSN reserves the right to deny, suspend or discontinue Supporter benefits to any company undergoing published legal actions or regulatory disputes (including any settlements of such).
44 D IRECT SELLING NEWS FEATURE / T HE RISE OF SHEIN & TEMU

THE RISE OF SHEIN & TEMU

WHAT DIRECT SELLING CAN LEARN FROM THESE ECOMMERCE GOLIATHS.

IF YOU’RE OVER THE AGE OF 30, a Super Bowl commercial might have served as your first introduction to online marketplace Temu. But for millions of young people, Temu is an extremely popular shopping app. And now, thanks to a multibillion-dollar ad campaign, if you spend anytime online, you are undoubtedly seeing some kind of marketing from Temu. Since launching in the U.S. in September, Temu has skyrocketed in popularity and recently overtook Shein as the most popular shopping app in the U.S. The companies currently sit in first and second place respectively, ahead of both Walmart and Amazon according to SimilarWeb.

www.directsellingnews.com 45

THE RAPID RISE of these two companies has shaken up the way Americans shop online, as they have successfully challenged and ultimately overtaken behemoths like Amazon, eBay and Walmart.

THE EMERGENCE OF TEMU HAS RIVALED THAT OF SHEIN, ITS CLOSEST COMPETITOR. Shein, the fast fashion juggernaut, has become one of the world’s most popular and visible clothing brands, reaching $100 billion in sales in 2022. If Shein was a country, it would outrank every other country in direct selling on the planet, except for the United States. And they don’t even sell in China. They have 6.4 million TikTok followers and add thousands of new items to their site every single day, utilizing artificial intelligence-based product development and a shockingly nimble supply chain.

The rapid rise of these two China-based companies has shaken up the way Americans shop online, as they have successfully challenged and ultimately overtaken behemoths like Amazon, eBay and Walmart. But with rising economic tensions between the U.S. and China, troubling environmental concerns and pending litigation between the two companies, the sustainability of their success isn’t a given.

Different Approaches. Similar Successes.

While the two companies are often compared to each other, distinct differences exist. Temu provides a platform to thousands of small businesses and microbrands selling across more than 250 product categories. Shein takes a different approach, contracting with hundreds of factories to produce clothing that it sells under its own label.

The companies have comparable shipping times and both offer products from manufacturers all over the world. Temu has a more comprehensive product offering with multiple categories ranging from beauty and fashion items to power tools. Shein is more focused on fashion, primarily for women. Their offering does include some household items, accessories and other fashion items as well as options for men and children.

Despite their differences, the two companies have one important thing in common. “Temu and Shein are disrupting the boring U.S. ecommerce market more than anyone else,” Juozas Kaziukenas, founder of the ecommerce research firm Marketplace Pulse, told The Washington Post

Affiliate Programs

Another similarity that is of particular interest to direct selling companies are the successful affiliate programs each company runs. Temu’s affiliate program offers budding influencers up to $20,000 a month to promote its products and services. Influencers can provide their followers with discount and referral codes. Established influencers can also receive free items to review and promote via their social channels.

MAGNETIC CONTENT DIGITAL SELLING TRENDS 46 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 FEATURE / T HE RISE OF SHEIN & TEMU

The Shein affiliate program also allows digital marketers, bloggers, influencers, reviewers and other content creators to make income by referring customers to the platform. The free-to-join program allows participants to promote Shein on their websites and social channels with a unique affiliate link. Affiliates can earn a generous 10-20 percent commission on sales.

Both companies have also relied heavily on celebrities to grow their brands. Shein has reported paying thousands of influencers, celebrities, fashion bloggers and reality show contestants around the world to endorse their products.

Game On!

Each brand also specifically targets Gen Z through gamification. This is a growing trend among DTC brands and something direct selling companies can look to in order to attract this key demographic into the fold. Gamification increases retention and engagement through fully immersive experiences and interactive elements, creating a fun and unique experience shoppers love.

Gamification is a relatively new concept, but an undeniable benefit is how this personalized approach turns online shopping into entertainment. Whether it’s mini fashion quizzes, spin-the-wheel discounts or even raising virtual fish, the fun in-app experiences found on Shein and Temu are as much a part of the addictive customer experience as browsing the fashions. And they generate rewards and discounts that keep customers coming back time and again.

Staying One Step Ahead

The ecommerce landscape is becoming increasingly crowded, with new platforms challenging traditional online marketplaces and retail outlets. Companies

THREE KEY TAKEAWAYS

1 / SHEIN AND TEMU ARE OVERTAKING ESTABLISHED ONLINE MARKETPLACES

Walmart, Amazon and eBay have all been eclipsed by the rapid rise of these China-based fast fashion apps that appeal primarily to Gen Z.

2 / INFLUENCERS HAVE IMPACT

Temu and Shein both utilize affiliates and celebrity endorsers as part of their strategy. An attractive commission and easy referrals seal the deal.

3 / GAMIFICATION KEEPS CUSTOMERS COMING BACK

Fun online games, quizzes, promotions, rewards and prizes offer a personalized, exciting customer experience that improves engagement.

like Shein and Temu are disruptors, gaining popularity and market share through speed, nimbleness, affordability and an enhanced online shopping experience.

Shein and Temu aren’t just taking on existing platforms like Amazon, they are also targeting each other. This is best evidenced by recent litigation

Shein has levied against Temu. The litigation hinges on Shein’s claims that Temu has encouraged influencers to make false and deceptive claims about Shein in their promotion of Temu as well as creating accounts to mimic Shein online. This legal battle illustrates the growing competition between the two companies as well as the huge financial stakes.

Which app is better and which model is more sustainable is something only time will reveal, but direct selling companies can definitely adopt and adapt some of their affiliate and gamification strategies to up their own online shopping experience. DSN

directsellingnews.com 47

DIRECT SELLING'S ROADMAP OF THE FUTURE —

PRECISION POSITIONING

[ HOW GEN X, MILLENNIALS & GEN Z REALLY FEEL ABOUT DIRECT SELLING. ]

48 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COVER STORY / R OADMAP OF THE FUTURE M Z

A FIRST-OF-ITS-KIND STUDY DETAILS HOW EVERY GENERATION

OF AMERICANS ACROSS ALL GENDERS, GEOGRAPHIES AND

SOCIO - E CONOMIC LEVELS PERCEIVE, ENGAGE WITH AND MEASURE

SUCCESS AND OPPORTUNITY IN DIRECT SELLING.

M X

Gen Z

18 - 26

Younger Millennials

27 - 35

Older Millennials

36 - 43

Gen X

44 - 55

TIMES HAVE CHANGED, but in the direct selling channel executives can easily assume (read: hope) that some things never will.

That belief was challenged last year when Jason Dorsey, President of the Center for Generational Kinetics (CGK), presented his generational research at Direct Selling University. Generational research identifies differences between generations in underlying motivation, actions, behavior and predictable tendencies. And while his findings illustrated how deeply the generational divide impacts how people perceive and engage with the world around them and detailed how companies cannot simply rely on one messaging style to effectively reach all ages, all the insights were borrowed from research done in other industries. As I dug deeper into this game-changing topic, I quickly discovered that no generational study of any significance had ever been done just for the direct selling industry.

50 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COVER STORY / R OADMAP OF THE FUTURE
GENERATION AGE
MEET THE GENERATIONS
M X Z

As a (ahem) seasoned executive and the founder of Bridgehead Collective, a firm founded to help companies in the channel innovate, form and execute strategic plans in a dynamic digital environment, I know the importance of wellresearched data. Operators at our core, we use data to help companies maximize every dollar spent. Data is the foundation for determining how to allocate investments; where to leverage human power to lead through change; how to identify and overcome internal and external obstacles to growth; and how to decide which strategies will have the most robust impact on measurable results. That’s why, as I listened to Jason, I knew that we needed to harness the power of original generational research in a way that would specifically analyze the direct selling industry. If we want answers that we’re willing to dedicate all our resources towards, then we must do the research. As much as we’d like to think we’ve been around long enough to have all the answers, we often need to reach out to those who actually do.

New Generation-Specific Strategies

In a first-of-its-kind study, Bridgehead Collective chose to partner with the Center for Generational Kinetics, which has led more than 100 research studies in all major industries. Their seminal annual study, The State of Gen Z, formed the basis for the best-selling book, ZConomy and has been consistently featured in national and global

THREE KEY TAKEAWAYS

1 / ONE SIZE ABSOLUTELY DOES NOT FIT ALL

Each generation has its own distinct views on direct selling when it comes to barriers; openness; income requirements; recognition; tools; onboarding and incentives.

2 / ONE GENERATION IS SURPRISINGLY MORE OPEN TO DIRECT SELLING THAN YOU MIGHT THINK

Negative preconceived notions exist across all groups, but effective, targeted messaging can go a long way toward dispelling those ideas.

3 / THE AMOUNT OF INCOME NEEDED T O MAKE DIRECT SELLING “WORTH IT” IS VASTLY DIFFERENT ACROSS GENERATIONS

We’ve historically thought that touting any income potential without a comma in it wasn’t good enough. Now we are more limited with additional income opportunity claims but we don’t know what that means for each generation. Turns out, too big of a number is off-putting to some generations.

media including The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, CNN and many more. I set out to discover America’s perceptions of entrepreneurship, the gig-economy and, more pointedly, direct selling. Statistical significance was of ultimate importance in this analysis, so the study represents a widesweeping sample that is reflective of America, with an equitable mix of genders, demographics, employment status, education levels and location that allows for a 97 percent confidence level.

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OF

42 %

When we launched the study, my biggest fear was that I would spend a year immersed in this process, only to resurface with findings that were predictable. I anticipated a year full of “Well, as we suspected…” but instead, I was thrilled by the differentiated and potentially game-changing nature of our results, and I think you will be too.

We designed the study to provide Actionable Insights across 10 Key Categories:

n Perception of Industry and Channel

n Recruiting and Prospecting

n Motivations and Decision Criteria

n Onboarding and Getting Started

n Training

n Compensation and Value Proposition

n Recognition

n Incentive Trips and Events

n Retention

n Duplication and Role of Team Building

What did we learn? So, so much! Every generation has strong feelings about how we recruit, onboard and train. That maybe we knew. But no two generations are remotely the same in what motivates them to want to stay in or leave

a business. In fact, as we looked at the data, it was common to see results that were significantly polarized. Each of these 10 key categories provided new, actionable insights that every marketing, sales, field communication and compensation team will want to design around. Following are just a few of these standout insights from one of those categories.

Leading with a one-size-fits-all approach is from a bygone era; I don’t think anyone is still stuck in that model. But many companies are still relying on a historical positioning of the direct selling opportunity that doesn’t really fit anymore. We must consider just how much perceptions have shifted and strategize with generational chasms in mind.

What we need is a new roadmap.

52 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COVER STORY / R OADMAP OF THE FUTURE
AMERICANS HAVE CONSIDERED WORKING IN THE DIRECT SELLING INDUSTRY
MEN ARE 11% MORE LIKELY THAN WOMEN TO HAVE A POSITIVE PERCEPTION OF DIRECT SELLING AND 7% MORE COMFORTABLE LEARNING ABOUT DIRECT SELLING.

EACH OF THESE 10 key categories provided new, actionable insights that every marketing, sales, field communication and compensation team will want to design around.

directsellingnews.com 53

Precision Messaging

It’s common to hear direct selling executives and field leaders say they are eager to pursue Gen Z. They are the next generation of customers, after all, and represent the threshold to what’s next. In an effort to court the youngest shoppers, however, brands can jump on trend bandwagons that have the opposite effect for older generations, effectively alienating their already loyal customers and distributors in the Gen X and Millennial age brackets.

M X Z

FOR OLDER GENERATIONS, getting paid weekly significantly influences their likelihood of engaging in the direct selling industry, while YOUNGER GENERATIONS prioritize learning new skills that can be used in their daily lives and building their influence and impact.

The Sweet Spot of Opportunity

The key, then, is to deliver our messages with precision. No two generations have the same preferences, experiences and motivations, so our messaging shouldn’t either. We need to become students of generational divides, knowing how to fine-tune our communications so that they speak the language of each specific customer and what our sellers want to be called for maximum credibility (Spoiler alert: it’s not Ambassador).

This will create the trust we need with each generation to ensure our messages are heard, understood and embraced. With the right data, it’s possible to truly reach everyone by refining our audience and tailoring our messages for maximum impact

The good news is, across the board, Americans are generally interested in starting their own business. Even better, a whopping 42 percent have considered working in the direct selling industry. If we stopped there, we might be misled to think that a large segment of every generation is ready to receive the direct selling opportunity without reservation.

When we dig deeper, we find that Gen Z (ages 18-26) and younger Millennials (ages 27-35) are significantly more likely than older generations to be working or to have considered working in the direct selling industry. However, older Millennials (36-43) and Gen X (44-55) are much more likely than their younger counterparts to have never considered working in the direct selling industry.

In fact, the study told us that younger generations, especially younger Millennials, not only have a significantly more positive perception of direct selling compared to their older counterparts, they’re also considerably more comfortable learning about the opportunities it can offer.

54 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COVER STORY / R OADMAP OF THE FUTURE
YOUNG MILLENNIAL MEN, ages 27 to 35, are potentially our biggest missed opportunity.
directsellingnews.com 55

From this survey question, another statistic was buried within the data that took us by surprise: men are 11 percent more likely than women to have a positive perception of direct selling and seven percent more comfortable learning about a direct selling opportunity.

For years, many direct selling brands have spent their energy courting Gen Z women shoppers and mom-preneurs, but the data is telling us that Young Millennial men, ages 27 to 35, are potentially our biggest missed opportunity.

If we use precision messaging, we can advance recruiting in this demographic while also tailoring our communications with the older, more skeptical demographic in a way that speaks to their doubts and concerns.

Barriers by Generation

Being an entrepreneur is no easy task, so it’s no surprise that high startup costs (54%) and failure itself (46%) are the biggest barriers Americans face when considering a new business venture. But those challenges increase as we step into the direct selling genre.

Taking all ages into account, 46 percent of Americans who have a negative perception of direct selling just have a general belief that the industry is a scam or predatory, and 43 percent are convinced they would have to get their friends to buy something in order for them to be successful.

These are big numbers that represent big barriers for any prospective distributor or customer. How can we reposition our messages to assuage these beliefs?

By digging into the data. Our study exposed exactly what words to use to overcome these barriers; how to position the opportunity; where and how to reach them; and the most effective language to use for each generation.

Once we’ve addressed these gateway obstacles, we need to consider how Americans want to be approached with the opportunity. Most generations prefer an in-person conversation with a family member or friend—surprisingly, 70 percent or more of Gen Z and all Millennials favor this method.

What no generation preferred was a group discussion led by a distributor. Group meetings, whether on Zoom, at an event or in a coffee shop, scored low across the board. There was one caveat: Younger Millennials were the most receptive of all generations across a number of categories and approaches.

This was one of the most surprising insights from the entire study. Younger Millennials don’t really care where or how they learn about direct selling. They simply want to hear about it, even more than we might have thought.

What’s Their Win?

Making extra money is by far the biggest benefit Americans seek when getting involved as a direct selling distributor. From there, having control over when and where work happens (43%) was a strong driver.

For older generations, getting paid weekly significantly influences their likelihood of engaging in the direct selling industry, while younger generations prioritize learning new skills that can be used in their daily lives and building their influence and impact.

Money is the best and most welcomed benefit by a long shot, and getting paid and receiving money is what makes people want to stay working in the industry. In fact, it’s the highest predictor of whether or not an American would choose to keep working their business after the first three months.

While this is obvious, there is more to the story. In a generation-specific analysis, we see that Gen Z is also deeply impacted by a belief that they are part of a cause or movement, and that helping at least three other people get started would absolutely convince them to stay at a direct selling business after the first three months, significantly more so than older generations. For Gen X, it’s all about getting paid and seeing the product or service they’re selling work in their own life.

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Z

THE NATIONAL STUDY led by Heather Chastain and her team at Bridgehead Collective revealed numerous shocking findings that direct selling leaders need to know right away. I think this is exactly the missing data and

ACTIONABLE strategies the industry has been looking for but has been unavailable in a statistically accurate, national lens—until now. —JASON

/ President of the Center for Generational Kinetics

directsellingnews.com 57 M X Z
DORSEY

How Much Is Enough?

We have all been reframing our business opportunity in increasingly compliant ways, referring to “extra or additional or supplemental income” instead of a specific dollar or some other atypical earnings amount. The problem though is that this general approach to pitching opportunity will mean different things to different people. However, now, with this research, we know for the first time how much money “additional or extra or supplemental” income really is. An extra $500 a month is enough for 83 percent of Americans to say they would get involved in direct selling, but the exact amounts vary significantly by generation. For older generations, $1,000 or more in the first month convinces them that direct selling is worth it. For younger generations, that number is only $250$499 and the mention of more than $1,000 can raise red “ick-factor” flags that will deter them from ever joining! We have the data to show you why.

Much to my surprise, cash bonuses for hitting certain sales thresholds beat out a simple consistent selling percentage as the number one preferred performance incentive across the board. In contrast to Gen X and older Millennials, younger generations valued recognition in front of their peers or at a national or international meeting as a highly effective performance incentive.

It’s important to take note that respondents rated some of the most common industry recognition tools as the least likely to make them feel valued as a distributor, which when armed with this data, should have some of you rethinking how you recognize on social or those increasingly ubiquitous giveback trips.

Unlock Untapped Opportunity

The study clearly shows us that generations perceive this industry in vastly different ways than we may have thought.

The often-touted homogeneous, funnel marketing technique may appear more efficient, but this study proves that it is likely also less effective. We must balance efficiency with effectiveness. When we think about investment, we need to also think about changing the lens with which we’re viewing that investment. What’s a bigger spend: one cheaper, ineffective communication approach or a multi-pronged message that may cost more but delivers results?

For instance, if you want to go after younger Millennials, talk about the opportunity to earn an extra $250 a month and offer them a trusted guide to help them develop the skills they need. If you want to go after Gen X, focus on the potential to earn an extra $1,000 a month and the efficacy of your products.

There are wide bands of Americans that genuinely want and are looking for what we have to offer. All of the insights above were from just one of the 10 categories of questions, and they all offer equally insightful and actionable data we can apply to every facet of our businesses. When we fine-tune our target market and let the data guide our message there is vast opportunity waiting to be unlocked. DSN

WANT TO LEARN MORE? Join us

at the DSN Deep Dive happening Friday, May 19 in Flower Mound, Texas. See page 2 of DSN for more information. Jason and Heather will share their biggest surprises from this game-changing research and provide key action items to keep your messaging and methods on point for each generation. They will also be joined at the event by direct selling and social selling executives. To register or find out more, scan the code.

With 20+ years of cross-functional experience in direct selling, Heather Chastain brings a solid understanding of sales, marketing, technology, manufacturing, operations and C-Suite challenges as well as a strong collaborative and relational style of leadership to the table. Heather has held executive roles at Shaklee, Arbonne International, Celebrating Home and BeautiControl. Heather also serves as the Strategic Advisor at DSN and is the Founder & Chief Executive Officer of Bridgehead Collective.

58 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COVER STORY / R OADMAP OF THE FUTURE

TAKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL

BUILD THE LIFE AND CAREER

YOU WANT BY HARNESSING THE SKILLS YOU ALREADY HAVE.

60 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 FEATURE / T AKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL

HUCK JARVIE, the former president of Dr Pepper, and I were talking several years ago, and Chuck told me he had met with Willie Nelson the previous week. He said Willie had told him he shoots par golf. I thought, Willie Nelson? Par golf? I waited a minute for him to finish his joke. He said, “No, I really did meet Willie, and he did say he shoots par golf.” Okay… Then he said, “Willie told me he owns his own ranch, and on his own ranch he has his own golf course. Therefore, he sets his own par.”

Just recently I learned that Willie Nelson continually rethinks the par standards for his play. And really, each of us has our own par. That means—in essence—we all have our own next level. And, like Willie Nelson, we should all be continually rethinking what the par for our next level should be.

For my book RESULTS Faster, we created a visual model—a bullseye—that represents the 21 most powerful lessons from the best of my life’s work. That included the more than 45 books I had published up to that point, along with the hundreds of courses I had developed over the years to help people get the results they want—and get them faster. The very first lesson in the RESULTS bullseye is thinking.

Because thinking matters.

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C

NEXT LEVEL realization is simply obtaining mastery in the areas of clarity, focus and execution.

IN THE LIST OF THE 100 BOOKS that have influenced my life the most, some form of the word “think” appears in many of the titles (e.g., As a Man Thinketh, Think and Grow Rich, The Power of Positive Thinking and The Magic of Thinking Big). Others are powerful works about thinking (e.g., The Strangest Secret, Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude, Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind, The Psychology of Winning, The Millionaire Mind, etc.).

The first thing I see each morning when I walk into my office is the word “THINK” on the wall beside my desk. And the first thing I see when I walk into the hanger that houses my gym are the words “NEXT LEVEL.” I’ve installed these signs so I will constantly be reminded to think about my next level. They are powerful visual reminders of who and how I want to be.

62 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 FEATURE / T AKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL
Strategic Selling Force Multipliers Leadership Mastery Strategic Mindset Preparation Connection/ Relationships Tools Personal BrandProfessional& Presentation Mastery™ TimeManagement Saying"No" HLAs(HighLevel Activites) MOLO (More of, Less of) Goal Setting Values Wealth StrategicIQ Beliefs Thinking Habits LifeTeam Standards Team Building Persuasion RESULTS FASTER! Clarity Focus Execution A VISUAL MODEL— a bullseye—that represents the 21 most powerful lessons. The very first lesson in the RESULTS bullseye is thinking.

Next level is a mindset. It’s a commitment. And it starts with thinking.

The most impactful people don’t see things as they are; they see things as they want them to be. The bottom line is that most people simply don’t do enough thinking. And, as a result they often live on the proverbial hamster wheel. However those that spend enough time in thought and contemplation are the ones that consistently meet their goals and run the world.

If you want to have the best of everything:

n the best year, month, hour and minutes

n the best family, team, customers and relationships

n the best health, look, vibe and being all of it starts with intentionality.

It’s great to get new perspectives; we all need them. Yet you will really start getting into the game of next level when you consistently and intentionally start gathering life-changing “a-ha”s and epiphanies that will supercharge your mindset, effectiveness and trajectory.

You can best find these through mentors, coaches, your heroes and champions (the people who are ahead of you on the trail of life), books, videos and even your own life experiences.

THREE KEY TAKEAWAYS

1 / YOU CONTROL WHAT YOUR NEXT LEVEL WILL BE

Just as you set your own par, or current level, you can also determine what your next level can be and how you can get there.

2 / MAKE SURE YOU ARE SPENDING ENOUGH TIME IN THOUGHT

Resist the urge to just “do.” Careful and considerate contemplation allows you to next level your thinking and, in turn, your life.

3 / CLARITY, FOCUS AND EXECUTION ARE KEY

To rapidly meet and exceed your goals, set your intentions on these three factors and utilize five key action items to measure your gains.

If you’re like most top leaders, what you really want is compression from your vision to reality. Whether it’s for a product launch, a new recruiting campaign, new country launch, or a new set of offerings, your vision is greatly enhanced the clearer and more defined your goals are. Next level realization is simply obtaining mastery in the areas of clarity, focus and execution.

Are you thinking about what the next level is for your business, for your life and how you can achieve it? If so, you may want to read on, because I’m going to give you five actions you can take in the areas of clarity, focus and execution.

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RESULTS Faster! is a remarkable compilation of the best of Tony’s life’s work. In seven life-changing chapters, packed with three powerful lessons each, you’ll discover not only how to get better results, but also how to get them at a strategically accelerated rate.

FOCUS / Benchmarking

Look for things that work; that are proven; and that are better than what you are doing or thinking. And consider bringing those things into your organization. Benchmarking can come from advisors and consultants who share information you may not know; from research and industry events like DSU; and from studying podcasts, books, videos and even your competition.

EXECUTION / Team

CLARITY

1/ Self-reflection (Past, Present and Future)

Understanding your past, present and future as a strategy allows you to reflect, understand current conditions and see the future you want to make into reality.

2/ Vision

The next-level mindset is one that constantly thinks “next level,” no matter where you are in reaching your goals. You may have been consistently moving closer to the bullseye (your current vision), yet you may need to think about expanding your vision. Also consider weaving in standards. Many leaders of organizations want their people to think like they do, and sometimes it takes months or years to achieve that unless you have written, documented standards that they can refer to.

3/ Values

Better and faster decision-making, including risk mitigation, comes much easier if you are clear on what you value and if you are consistently living in alignment with those values.

Your team consists of your direct reports, their reports, and your Life Team. Having a person for everything allows for exceptional execution. In fact, the person who has the best Life Team often wins the most prizes in life. (Hint: Have a person between you and the task, project or deal.) And remember that you get more of what you appreciate; so constantly be thanking, complimenting and appreciating the people who do research for you; help you stay healthy; help you design your communication, etc.

6/

Humility

Attaining next-level results comes from ego-free daily decisions that turn into habits, and thus cultures. I believe ego is good, because it drives a leader to be exceptional. Yet some people often get stuck in thinking that they know it all and believe that they don’t have blind spots. And, in those cases, their ego is not helping them the way it could. Ego can also be limiting when people are not open to change, improving and deploying benchmark ideas to help get them to the next level. Remember my 2020 book titled The Game Is Always Changing DSN

TONY JEARY—The RESULTS Guy™—is a renowned strategist, executive coach and keynote speaker who changes people’s thinking. He and his team uniquely facilitate planning sessions in his one-of-a-kind RESULTS Center to help direct selling executives learn, grow, evolve and thrive.

64 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 FEATURE / T AKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL
we are your event partner
event. Production | Creative | Management | Incentives www.katapultevents.com
We are ready to partner with you on every level of your

R

For You6

ECOMMENDATIONS for you (and your field) to read, listen and utilize in order to stay engaged, informed and one step ahead.

AUDIO BOOK / The Deadly Sins of Employee Retention: New Edition to Solve the Great Resignation, Quiet Quitting, Burnout and More

Did you know that nearly half of employees currently looking for another job? In a post-pandemic world with over ten million openings nationwide, it’s become much more difficult to find (and retain!) good people. Despite this challenge, New York Times bestselling author Mark Murphy has studied over a million leaders and identified seven common mistakes that destroy an organization’s efforts in employee retention. Consider sharing this book with your leadership and HR teams to form an airtight retention plan.

TECH DEVICE / Cubii Total Body+

The Cubii Total Body+ is a compact elliptical machine that fits under your desk, allowing you to burn calories while taking conference calls. With an LCD display, 12 resistance levels and a Bluetooth fitness tracker that syncs to the Cubii app, you can customize your workout and see your progress measured in calories, strides, distance and/or time. In between meetings, try the built-in resistance bands for an upper body, rowing-style workout. Best of all, the Cubii weighs less than 20 pounds for easy transport—which means no more excuses!

PRODUCT / The Unstuck Box for Teams

Utilized by thousands of top-performing corporate teams (including Google and Amazon!), The Unstuck Box for Teams is a collection of thought-provoking conversation starters, questions and ideas to get your team talking and collaborating on a deeper level. The box contains six individual card decks that cover different topics, such as workday wisdom, interviews, motivation, one-to-ones, team building and more. A QR code is included with the boxed set, which allows your team to download the decks digitally for easy reference.

66 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 DEPARTMENT / F OR YOU / FOR YOUR FIELD

For Your Field

BOOK / The Three Laws of Performance: Rewriting the Future of Your Organization and Your Life

As organizational and management consultants, authors Steve Zaffron and Dave Logan have worked with hundreds of corporations across the globe. The two biggest issues they see leaders struggling with are lack of buy-in and absence of ownership among their employees. In their book, The Three Laws of Performance, the authors outline a system for rallying employees around a common vision and making it stick. Help your field engage their teams and boost performance with this practical guide.

VIDEO / The Science of Persuasion

In this entertaining and informative 12-minute video, noted social psychologist Robert Cialdini narrates this overview on the concept of influence—the main subject of his bestselling books. In his decades of research regarding how we are persuaded, Dr. Cialdini identifies six universal shortcuts that guide human behavior: reciprocity, scarcity, authority, consistency, liking and consensus. It’s easy to see why they are crucial to direct selling and how they could be leveraged by your field to optimize success.

PODCAST / Unbeatable with Jeff Struecker

As a decorated soldier and an inductee to the U.S. Army Ranger Hall of Fame, Jeff Struecker knows a thing or two about overcoming challenges and breaking through to success. That’s why he launched the Unbeatable podcast: to encourage people to keep going instead of giving up. Through interviews with inspiring individuals who overcame the odds in business, sports, music, military service and more, Struecker’s message is clear: “When life becomes unmerciful, be unbeatable!”

DSN “
WORDS TO L EAD
Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection,
BY:
directsellingnews.com 67
6
FEA TURE / D IRECT SELLING DISRUPTORS PODCAST 68 DIRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 INTRODUCING DIRECT SELLING DISRUPTORS PODCAST DSN’S NEWEST PODCAST— HOSTED BY BLAKE MALLEN —DELIVERS INSPIRATION, EDUCATION AND PURPOSE TO DISTRIBUTORS ACROSS THE CHANNEL.

MY GOAL FOR DIRECT SELLING DISRUPTORS is to tap into the insights and experiences of the most successful field leaders in the channel to learn what’s working and what’s not; to discover how they are innovating and building their businesses; and to determine where they see the channel shifting in the future.

69

I HAVE NO DOUBT

this podcast will quickly become the blueprint on how to succeed as an independent distributor in today’s digital world of direct selling.

TO BE an entrepreneur means to be a bit of a disruptor—

someone who challenges the status quo, changing the traditional way an industry operates, especially in a new and effective way. It takes a particular mindset, unwavering commitment, clarity of vision and singular focus.

The channel has its fair share of legendary disruptors and entrepreneurs that have founded and helmed direct selling companies. These are names we all know and revere. But entrepreneurism is not a one-size-fits all proposition. It can take on many different shapes and scale in a variety of ways. That is why direct selling is such a draw for aspiring entrepreneurs and why so many people looking to own their own business take advantage of the direct selling opportunity.

DSN is known for its laser focus on educating and providing value to the executives that lead the channel through reputable, trustworthy journalism and the research they need to future-proof their businesses. We also recognize and admire the tenacity and contributions of distributors around the world. They are the heart, soul and lifeblood of the channel.

With that in mind, we are excited to announce the newest addition to the DSN family of podcasts, Direct Selling Disruptors, hosted by Blake Mallen, which launches this month.

Direct Selling Disruptors expands the DSN brand in a new direction—actively engaging directly with the channel’s largest audience…distributors, consultants and promoters for the first time. The launch of the Direct Selling Disruptors podcast brings the visibility, credibility and reach of DSN to the distributor community. New episodes will drop the first Monday of each month.

A Time of Disruption

As a channel, direct selling is in a constant state of rapid change. Old methods no longer work, and there is a real need for new solutions to the complex dynamics and challenges facing the channel.

This is the specific need that Direct Selling Disruptors is uniquely positioned to fill. As Host Blake Mallen explains, “These are unprecedented times in the channel. I got my start in the field, and I’ve always believed that true innovation in the channel comes not from the board room, but from the leaders who are living it every day. My goal for Direct Selling Disruptors is to tap into the insights and experiences of the most successful field leaders in the channel to learn what’s working and what’s not; to discover how they are innovating and building their businesses; and to determine where they see the channel shifting in the future. The answers executives are looking for already exist— in our communities. We just have to ask the right questions and be humble enough to listen.”

About the Host

Blake, a billion-dollar brand builder and community marketing expert, is the perfect person to bring this content to fruition. With over two decades of field ownership and executive experience in the direct selling industry, Blake, a field-first leader, offers a unique combination of wisdom and innovation that has allowed him to turn ideas into iconic brands. In this new monthly podcast, Blake’s passion for the channel and innate curiosity will create a 360-degree view of what’s happening now and what’s coming up next.

With dynamic guests, innovative solutions and actionable takeaways, Blake and his listeners will learn from the most forward-thinking field leaders in direct selling—together.

70 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023
“ FEATURE / D IRECT SELLING DISRUPTORS POD CAST

A Powerful Platform

Making Direct Selling Disruptors a part of the DSN media family of podcasts, print and digital publications and research initiatives also gives DSN an opportunity to connect directly with a global community of distributors. Executives around the globe already look to DSN for trends, news, predictions and insights into the channel’s future. The launch of the Direct Selling Disruptors podcast brings the same level of trusted resources to the field.

As DSN Founder and CEO Stuart Johnson explained, “We will be celebrating our 20th anniversary next year. And for two decades we have taken our commitment to direct selling and the executives that lead it very seriously. It’s always been my goal for DSN to share stories of companies doing things the right way, leading by example, exploring new technologies and acting with integrity. We want to share those same types of stories but with a field focus. The Direct Selling Disruptors podcast is the best way to help anyone in direct selling—from new distributors to seasoned leaders—learn, grow and thrive in a rapidly evolving environment. I have no doubt this podcast will quickly become the blueprint on how to succeed as an independent distributor in today’s digital world of direct selling.”

It’s a sentiment shared by Blake. “Whether they are utilizing a more traditional approach to direct selling or whether they are embracing the affiliate model, it’s my hope that the listeners and myself will learn best practices together in a fun and transparent format. I can’t wait to get the discussion going and build a thriving community via the new Direct Selling Disruptors podcast!” DSN

Discover Direct Selling Disruptors

USAGE OF TAGLINED LOGO S

The tagline "AUDIT.TAX.ADVISORY" on ly accompanies the logo in cir cumstances where context requires c larification about what Squire can do for current and potential customers (the audience).

I lead Squire’s sales tax team, keeping direct-selling companies compliant with state and local tax laws. Our industry-specific approach includes nexus determination and tackling the challenges of sales tax calculations, registrations, filings, and related issues, such as exemption certificate management. I’m an expert in multi-state sales and use tax issues.

For example, Squire.com and its subsequent web pages featu r e the onet agline version (HIGHER PE RSPECTIVE ONLY) of the Squire logo because the subpage content t hroughout the site provides adequate co ntext to visitors.

Don’t miss an episode! Scan the QR code or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts.

On the other hand, if the team attends a national financial trade show where Sq uire should differentiate itself from a n eighboring financial software co mpany, then trade show banners n eed to include the tagline, “Audit- TaxA dvisory.”

Treat the secondary tagline like it’s part

directsellingnews.com 71
AUDIT · TAX ADVISORY
One-tagline version of full color logo Secondary-tagline version of full color logo One-tagline version of white logo LEARN MORE SQUIRE.COM ( 801 ) 225-6900 Get a sales tax expert on your team 2022_DSN_Shara_QuoteAd.indd 1 3/7/22 3:48 PM

20K+ Unique Downloads and Still Growing Strong

THE DIRECT APPROACH WITH WAYNE MOOREHEAD

CANDID AND INSIGHTFUL CONVERSATIONS ABOUT TODAY’S EVOLVING CHANNEL.

SINCE LAUNCHING in June 2021, The Direct Approach podcast has been providing direct selling executives an in-depth look at the biggest challenges facing the channel—and unique solutions for tackling them.

Wayne and the rest of the DSN Family would like to thank our growing audience and the 50+ executives and guests for their candor and participation.

MEET THE HOST Wayne Moorehead has deep experience in marketing and brand strategy. He has applied his expertise and passion to help companies (from startups to Fortune 100) define, communicate and activate their brands. Wayne’s rare blend of experience and success has shaped his philosophy on effective growth strategies, and he believes the future of the channel will blend the best of direct selling with the best of direct-to-consumer.

[

EPISODE 49 ]

Why Direct Selling Depends on Authentic Connections with Kody Bateman,

Founder & Chief Visionary Officer of Promptings

KODY FOUNDED SendOutCards in 2006 to encourage people to stay in touch with one another and his systems have been used by more than 1 million people, with over 200 million greeting cards and 13 million gifts sent. In 2022, the company announced it was rebranding itself as Promptings… Powered by SendOutCards to align with Kody’s foundational Prompting Process philosophy.

In this episode, Kody talks about the pivotal story behind the company and what led to the rebranding. He discusses the importance of defining your mission and how it affects distributors and customers and explains why community has become such a strong focal point in direct selling.

[

EPISODE 50 ]

Direct Selling’s Superpower with Michele Gay, Co-Founder and Chairwoman of Limelife by Alcone and Sarah Shadonix, Founder & CEO of Scout & Cellar

AS LEADERS of direct selling companies, Michele and Sarah understand some of the unique challenges that women face. They also understand how important it is for CEOs to have other peer leaders to reach out to and share their thoughts and ideas in a safe, trusted environment.

In this episode, Michele and Sarah talk about how the friendship and community they’ve created has helped them achieve greater success individually and how sharing ideas between leaders can elevate the experience for distributors. They also explain how collaboration can push the entire channel forward and ensure a more powerful industry for all.

[

EPISODE 51 ]

Evolving Your Business Model for a Changing World with Steve Fife, President & CEO of LifeVantage

STEVE IS PASSIONATE about bringing affordable, science-based products to market. He brings over three decades of financial leadership experience to LifeVantage. Steve combines bigpicture strategic thinking and an in-the-weeds work ethic to create a healthy financial organization and is focused on creating value for customers, shareholders and employees.

In this episode, Steve shares the story of LifeVantage’s evolution, from the customer journey through the compensation plan. Steve and Wayne will also discuss the strategies and challenges associated with change and get specific on successful transformation strategies.

NEVER MISS AN EPISODE —2023 has launched another year of insights, tips, takeaways and action items provided by some of the most notable names in the channel. If it’s impacting direct selling, Wayne and his guests will be talking about it on The Direct Approach. New episodes drop every other Thursday—make sure to subscribe!

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74 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COMPANY SPOTLIGHT / ACN

ACN: 30 Years Is Just the Beginning

ENTREPRENEURS ARE LIKE MAGNETS. They find each other, recognizing that same spark and vision. So, a group of entrepreneurs talking through new ideas is really nothing out of the ordinary—that is, until inspiration strikes and something entirely new is born. For the four founders of ACN, this lightning bolt moment changed everything and launched a business that shows no signs of slowing down, three decades later.

FOUNDED: 1993

HEADQUARTERS: Concord, NC

TOP EXECUTIVES:

Robert Stevanovski, Chairperson & Co-Founder

Greg Provenzano, President & Co-Founder

PRODUCTS: Essential Services

directsellingnews.com 75 ACN /

New Season, Same Values

Greg Provenzano, Robert Stevanovski, Tony Cupisz and Mike Cupisz dreamed up ACN at that fateful meeting 30 years ago. They all came to the table with significant direct sales experience, so they knew what they loved about the industry and what their previous opportunities were lacking. And, most importantly, they also knew what their dream company would stand for

“In 30 years, our core values: integrity, commitment to giving back, Independent Business Owners and customers above all—these have stayed the same,” Greg said. “But we’ve adapted and updated our products as needed and remained open to pursue other offerings.”

“When we met in 1992, we searched for an opportunity that we could put our faith and trust in,” Robert added. In the fall of 1992, we had the crazy idea to start our own company. We decided early on to always find ways to give back and do things the right way.”

Today ACN operates with Independent Business Owners (IBOs) in 27 countries. While ACN began as a provider of long-distance telephone service, the company has evolved tremendously and now offers a range of residential and business services covering 12 categories, including mobile phone service, energy, internet, credit card processing, health care and travel.

“We started with long-distance service, yet we remained open and very flexible in our mindset to pursue other services that would create long-term residual income for our IBOs and provide real value for our customers,” Greg shared. “We knew if we created the right environment and platform, we would attract the right kind of people. People who were looking for an opportunity and wanted to do something special for themselves and their families.”

76 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COMPANY SPO TLIGHT / ACN

ACN’s residential services include travel, mobile, identity theft protection, gas and electricity, health care, internet, television and security and automation. Business services include gas and electricity, internet, health care, payment processing and security and automation.

Each service category is represented by a brand or several brands. For example, ACN recently introduced Impact Health Sharing, an affordable healthcare program that offers customers an alternative to health insurance. Another recent addition at ACN is Truvvi Lifestyle, a membersonly subscription that offers travel benefits and discounted rates.

“Our menu of services has never been better, especially with our recent additions of Impact Health Sharing and Truvvi Lifestyle,” Greg said. “I believe that we can build billions of dollars of revenue with these two services alone. And the timing of our opportunity has never been better.”

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“ We decided early on to always find ways to give back and do things the right way.
—ROBERT STEVANOVSKI

An Unparalleled Opportunity

As the direct selling industry evolves, finding new competition outside of the industry in nearly every product category, the ACN business model stands apart from the crowd. Customers across the world use key essential services everyday—from the energy they use in their homes to the wireless and security systems that protect them and beyond. While other direct selling companies are researching new product possibilities and new ways to keep their customers engaged, ACN taps into those key services customers are using already.

“There are a lot of good opportunities in direct selling, but we don’t rely on discretionary income. Our offering is mostly services that are necessities,” Robert shared. “Our income opportunity allows for residual income on everyday name brand products and services. We don’t have to change buying habits.”

ACN is service-focused so there is no inventory for IBOs to purchases. ACN provides a personalized website, training & marketing tools, business tracking powered by the Salesforce Platform, IBO & Customer Support, ACN Perks and ACN Loyalty rewards.

All IBOs can access the company’s extensive training and support system including an opportunity for specialized leadership training with the Co-Founders. From online training to local, regional and international training events and ongoing personal development, IBOs have everything they need to grow readily accessible to them.

“We are always looking for unique and innovative ways to support and connect with our IBOs,” Greg shared. “We’re offering a hybrid approach of Zoom and live meetings; increasing the number of inperson events; and doing social media training as another tool in their toolbox to help the IBOs attract others to themselves. We remain relevant by staying in tune with our leaders and what they want and need to grow their businesses.”

When the four founders met to dream up their ideal direct selling organization, they each came with deep experience that would shape ACN for the better. They knew they wanted the IBO experience to be seamless, supported and successful—so they created a family atmosphere that is results focused and rich with rewards and recognition.

“Since the very beginning we have always put the success of our IBOs above the success of the company,” Greg said. “I believe that when you have a higher purpose with the right intentions and focus, great things will happen for the company. And that is exactly what happened at ACN. Thirty years later, and we are more relevant today than at any point in our company’s history.”

78 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COMPANY SPOTLIGHT / ACN

Cheers to the Next 30 Years

ACN has much to celebrate, as it enters a new decade of serving IBOs, through steadfast leadership and ongoing expansion. In the last several years, ACN has grown through the acquisition of two companies: Kynect and Team National. Both companies’ essential service offerings fit perfectly into ACN’s portfolio, creating value for existing ACN IBOs as well as those IBOs that transitioned from Kynect and Team National.

“Both are service based companies, with similar core values,” Robert shared. “So, it was an easy transition for both companies, as both have high expectations and a family environment. It’s been great to add them to the team as IBOs and in the corporate office.”

ACN’s founders, corporate team members and IBOs are eagerly looking to the next 30 years, as they continue to grow together through serving their customers’ essential needs.

“We’re excited about continuing to help others,” Greg said. “The recent addition of services like Impact Health Sharing and Truvvi Lifestyle makes us very bullish about the future.” DSN

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“ We knew if we created the right environment and platform, we would attract the right kind of people.
—GREG PROVENZANO
80 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 COMPANY SPOTLIGHT / N ICE DE MEXICO / NICE & BELLA

NICE & BELLA: A Handcrafted Opportunity

OR MORE THAN 80 YEARS, the Litchi family has been designing and crafting beautiful, internationally inspired jewelry for women and men. The factory exports jewelry pieces throughout 27 countries worldwide. The family launched NICE de Mexico in 1996, with a vision to share their jewelry collection through independent distributors looking to build their own businesses. Today, the next generation of the Litchi family is growing the company by expanding into new international markets, while still preserving the handcrafted quality and exclusive designs NICE is known for.

FOUNDED: 1996

HEADQUARTERS:

Dallas, TX (U.S. Headquarters)

TOP EXECUTIVE:

Alejandro Litchi, CEO

PRODUCT CATEGORY: Jewelry

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F

Inspired by Family

For the Litchi family, jewelry design and manufacturing runs deep within their blood. Salvador Litchi spent his childhood watching his father, Don Mateo Litchi, craft raw materials into timeless pieces of jewelry

As a young man, Salvador followed in his father’s footsteps and began a jewelry business of his own. But as the cost of precious metals and gems rose, Salvador shifted his business model, designing more affordable jewelry that had the same timeless look as the pieces his father used to create. Tapping into the power of direct sales, Salvador launched a new company, NICE de Mexico, leading a factory of jewelry designers and manufacturers and building a sales field of independent distributors across Mexico.

A new generation now leads the family business, with Alejandro Litchi serving as Chief Executive Officer, but the original vision to offer a business opportunity sharing affordable, handcrafted jewelry remains.

“NICE was founded in Mexico with the vision of offering people an opportunity to have an income,” Alejandro said. “We launched with a very simple catalogue-based method of selling jewelry, which was especially attractive for those who had lost their jobs and needed income.”

After nearly 25 years of success in Mexico, sharing NICE’s signature jewelry through over 500,000 independent distributors, the Litchi family launched NICE & BELLA in 2016 to serve the U.S. market.

Dazzling the American Market

Since launching in the United States seven years ago, the company has experienced tremendous growth— especially in the field. Today, NICE and NICE & BELLA have a combined field of over 1.5 million independent distributors across Mexico and the United States

The business opportunity is easily accessible to aspiring entrepreneurs through two business kits: The Starter Kit for $99 and The Inspire Kit for $199. Both equip the new distributor with everything they will need to launch their NICE & BELLA business, including beautiful jewelry.

82 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023
COMPANY SPOTLIGHT / N ICE DE MEXICO / NICE & BELLA
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“ Eight years ago, we had under 500,000 independent distributors and now we’ve got more than a million and a half.
—ALEJANDRO LITCHI / CEO

“We support our independent distributors with training and digital tools including the best of technology to grow their businesses,” Alejandro explained. “Our team keeps looking for technologies and continuous development tools to offer our independent distributors. People interested in becoming independent distributors of NICE and NICE & BELLA are mainly women, though more and more men have found a friendly environment here to develop their skills and business.”

Distributors share NICE & BELLA’s gorgeous collection of jewelry for women, men and children, including necklaces, earrings, bracelets, brooches, charms and watches. The company’s catalog has recently expanded to include essential oils, aromatherapy and diffusers, as well as sunglasses and a selection of teas.

“We are constantly renewing what we offer to our independent distributors and their customers,” Alejandro said. “Four catalogs are being launched every year along with a wide variety of exclusive items, including jewelry, accessories and wellness products. Additionally, we offer seasonal items throughout the year.”

Since the beginning, NICE has always designed and manufactured all its jewelry pieces in house, giving their distributors access to exclusive designs customers can’t find anywhere else.

“Our factory employs more than 3,000 people in charge of exclusive jewelry designs, handcrafting and high-tech processes,” Alejandro shared. “We’re producing 500,000 pieces daily. There are no middlemen at any point of our processes: from creating a design, manufacturing and selling our pieces. Only our independent distributors from NICE and NICE & BELLA are sharing our products, so the economic benefit directly goes to them. It is important to mention that 1,500 collaborators in our distribution centers, warehouse and corporative offices are in charge of offering an excellent service to facilitate the tasks of our independent distributors.”

Meaningful Growth

Even in the face of pandemic uncertainty, NICE and NICE & BELLA continued to grow. In 2020 and 2021, the company responded with investment, rather than waiting out challenges. Leadership invested in technology, processes, manufacturing and training, working closely with distributors to help them feel supported and optimistic.

“We rapidly adapted our operation to serve with our independent distributors to come out of the pandemic crisis,” Alejandro said. “This was done successfully and led to very important growth. Our team members support our independent distributors. We know what they require and do our best to meet their needs in the most agile way. We count on their trust, since we are focused on making their businesses grow. We also have a professional, fully committed, close team of corporate team members with very low turnover.”

The growth that began with the launch of NICE & BELLA and continued through the pandemic has no signs of slowing down, as the field continues to grow.

“Eight years ago, we used to have under 500,000 independent distributors and now we’ve got more than a million and a half,” Alejandro shared. “We’ve rewarded more than 3,200 cars in the last five years and more than 20,000 people have joined us on international trips. We are in search of more families that have the chance to have a source of income, taking them to fulfill their dreams.”

84 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023
COMPANY SPOTLIGHT / N ICE DE MEX ICO / NICE & BELLA

The company has primary operations in Mexico and the United States and is currently expanding into new territories, with operations recently launched in Central America.

NICE is expanding its reach in other ways as well, through its work with The NICE Foundation. Founded in 1999, The NICE Foundation is the company’s nonprofit organization that supports social, educational and healthcare projects supporting children in disadvantaged communities.

“We founded The NICE Foundation with the mission of supporting the neediest children,” Alejandro shared.

“NICE contributes with important donations to helping children, as well invites all our independent

NICE HAS always designed and manufactured all its jewelry pieces in house, giving their distributors access to exclusive designs customers can’t find anywhere else.

distributors to add in our efforts to improve the life of childhood in different locations within Mexico, donating hundreds and thousands of dollars. Additionally, as natural disasters occur, the NICE Foundation has responded to the call of authorities by helping those in need.”

The most significant growth of NICE and NICE & BELLA has occurred in recent years, and Alejandro Litchi is now part of the hit TV show Shark Tank, where his talent to promote entrepreneurs in Mexico is widely acknowledged.

With a legacy as beautiful as the jewelry it designs, the Litchi family is eager to continue sharing NICE and NICE & BELLA with new communities in new markets around the world DSN

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Headless Architecture Offers Many Benefits for Direct Sellers

IN TODAY’S ever-evolving technological landscape, it can be difficult for businesses to determine where to direct their IT spend and roadmap. Advancements in technology and new systems can make it a challenge to keep up and remain competitive. However, the rise of headless architecture offers a solution that can help businesses stay ahead of the curve. In this article, we will explore the advantages of headless architecture and how it can benefit companies in the direct selling industry. By understanding the benefits of this technology, businesses can make informed decisions about their IT investments and position themselves for success in the digital arena.

Before we go too far, let’s first define what “headless” technology means. It refers to the separation of the front end, or user interface, from the back end, or server-side logic, of a web application.

5

KEY FACTORS TO CONSIDER

86 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 WORKING SMART / T HE BENEFITS OF HEADLESS ARCHITECTURE
5

For instance, a headless ecommerce system separates the user interface from the back end, which manages orders, inventory, commissions and other essential data, while these two systems communicate seamlessly through a well- designed Application Programming Interface (API) integration.

Headless systems are especially attractive to companies in unique industries such as direct selling. With advancements in compensation platforms, they can consider separating the distributor back office from the back-end systems that store tree and commission data.

A HEADLESS APPROACH eliminates the need to program the front-end systems to account for complicated compensation rules.

A headless approach eliminates the need to program the front-end systems to account for complicated compensation rules. Instead, they need to pass unique data to the commission platform and display calculated results provided by the system where earnings or volumes are generated. Removing these calculations from the front-end systems can bring significant improvements in the speed and functionality of the customer experience.

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END ORDERS INVENTORY COMMISSIONS ESSENTIAL DATA
BACK
APPLICATION PROGRAMMING INTERFACES INTEGRATION API
FRONT END USER INTERFACE

There are five key advantages of headless ecommerce for direct selling companies that should be evaluated.

1/ FASTER BUSINESS DECISIONS

One of the most significant advantages of headless ecommerce is that it enables direct selling companies to bring products to market faster. With the front-end and back-end separated, updates can be made to the user interface without disrupting the back-end system. This means that changes can be made quickly and easily, reducing the time it takes to implement business decisions.

This can be particularly beneficial for direct selling companies as product catalogs and promotions change frequently. With a headless system, many of the changes to products or promotions can take place without large development efforts in the front-end display. This modular approach to product, country and promotion logic can save costs and bring your vision to life faster.

2/ BETTER USER EXPERIENCE

Headless technology also enables companies to provide a better user experience to their customers. With a decoupled system, companies have greater control over the user interface,

allowing them to create unique and personalized experiences for their field. This can be particularly valuable in the direct selling industry, where building strong customer relationships has always been the key to success. Additionally, the front-end can be optimized for performance and speed, resulting in faster load times and a smoother overall experience.

This does not just apply to the ecommerce experience. Decoupling the front-end and back-end systems allows for these same type of optimizations in the back office and other customer-facing tools. Partner integrations like mobile apps and training platforms can also benefit from the ability to connect to the same back-end data points your field sees in their main reporting systems, creating a more congruent experience across your tech ecosystem.

88 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 WORKING SMART / T HE BENEFITS OF HEADLESS ARCHITECTURE

3/ IMPROVED OPERATIONAL TECHNOLOGY

Another benefit of headless technology is its ability to integrate with other operational systems and platforms. With the front-end and back-end separated, the back-end can be integrated with other technology, such as marketing automation tools, customer relationship management (CRM) systems and alternative payment gateways.

With a traditional web application, integrations often require custom coding and development, which can be time-consuming and expensive. In a headless system, integrations can be done faster using APIs, allowing companies to connect with these other systems and platforms in a more streamlined and efficient way.

4/ INCREASED SCALABILITY

Headless systems offer increased scalability, which can be a significant advantage for direct selling companies. In a traditional system, every customer interaction with the system has to go through the front-end and back-end systems to reach completion. This can put a tremendous strain on the systems and servers, especially during peak traffic times.

With headless systems, the front-end system handles the initial approval of a transaction before handing it off to the back-end system to complete the post-order processes, such as reducing inventory, preparing the order for shipment or applying commissionable volume. This separation of duties allows customers to see completed transactions without wait times while the back-end system completes post-order processes out of view.

By separating the workload between systems, companies can allocate resources where they are needed the most, saving time and money. For example, if a promotion is creating heavy front- e nd user traffic, additional server capacity can be added to capture the orders, while the processes surrounding shipping or commission calculation take place in the background unfazed by the heavy traffic. Targeting resources where they are needed the most prevents oversizing systems and unnecessary spending on unburdened processes.

HEADLESS SYSTEMS offer increased scalability, which can be a significant advantage for direct selling companies.

5/ FUTURE PROOF

Technology is advancing rapidly, and it is crucial for companies to keep up with these changes to remain competitive. A decoupled system, like a headless system, can take some of the fear out of technology decisions by creating segments of the system that can be updated or replaced without a company-wide technology overhaul. The versatility to replace just part of a tech stack can give companies a future-proof architecture with the ability to adapt and integrate to the “next big thing.”

Direct selling is evolving, and the right technology can help companies lead the way. As companies consider the future, they should consider what a headless architecture can do for their company and field. By using headless systems, companies can achieve increased scalability; allocate resources where they are needed most; and future-proof their technology infrastructure DSN

SEAN SMITH is an accomplished business leader and lifelong entrepreneur with over 12 years of experience in the direct selling industry. As the CEO of InfoTrax Systems, a leading provider of software solutions, he has a proven track record of delivering innovative and effective solutions for his clients.

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ICONIC INSIGHTS PODCAST / A MY BLANKSON HEATHER CHASTAIN DSN ICONIC INSIGHTS with HEATHER CHASTAIN Heather Chastain Talks with Amy Blankson About Creating a Culture of Digital Wellness
watch or listen to the entire interview, visit DirectSellingNews.com.
To

AS CEO and CO-FOUNDER of the Digital Wellness Institute, Amy Blankson has made it her mission to cultivate happiness and well-being in the digital era. Her bestselling book, The Future of Happiness , offers strategies on balancing productivity with well-being in a digital-driven world, and on May 5—Digital Wellness Day—she is unveiling the Digital Wellness University and Digitally Well School to help companies create a healthier digital culture.

A graduate of Harvard University who earned her MBA from Yale University, Amy co-founded the consulting firm GoodThink with her brother, Shawn Achor, in 2007 to bridge the gap between positive psychology research and practice in public companies. Today, Amy uses her expertise to help companies thrive and create a positive digital culture.

In this interview, Amy and Heather talk about how the perception of digital wellness has changed, how leaders can help workers create a tech/life balance and what they can do to foster a culture of digital well-being.

HEATHER CHASTAIN: Do you still look at this concept of digital wellness through the happiness lens? And if so, how has the definition of happiness changed and evolved since you started?

AMY BLANKSON: When I started writing my book, the framework we were using looked at all the problems tech was bringing to different domains of our life. And then my positive psychology training came back to me, and I was like—wait a minute—let’s pause. Let’s think about this. Not in terms of a fear-based approach, but rather looking forward, how do we get to a place of human flourishing? What do we want to look like? What would an image or a world of true digital wellness look like?

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“ Individuals are trying so hard to respond in 15 minutes. They want to make sure if their boss sends them something that they are shooting back, even if it’s 11 p.m. And it’s going to drive us nuts.
AMY BLANKSON

I think it’s a very necessary frame to not get locked into that fear of, “Oh my gosh, AI is going to destroy us and change the world as we know it.” But, rather, okay, what safeguards can we put in? What do we want AI to help us with and not help us with? Let’s get ahead with the conversation. In that sense, I think happiness is still very much part of that definition.

HEATHER: I hadn’t even really thought of it before, but you’re right—we do look at our engagement with tech in very restrictive ways. It’s all about limiting. How do I limit it? How do I monitor my screen time? How do I turn off apps that cause all these bad things instead of looking at it as how is this going to make my life better today? That’s a hard shift to make.

AMY: What I’m noticing now from audiences is that there’s an awareness that there’s a problem. But there’s not a lot of solutions, and there’s a lot of guilt around feeling like we’re not doing the right thing. Even though we want to, we aren’t—because we don’t know what to do. And that’s where I feel like what we’re trying to do at the Digital Wellness Institute is add language and conversation and tools so that it’s really about what are you doing when you’re online and what are you doing when you’re offline.

That’s a big shift recently for us, even at the Institute. This conversation of “It doesn’t matter how much screen time you have if your offline behaviors are very positive and supportive of that time online.”

HEATHER: Talk about the overlap between digital wellness and how employers should be thinking about that.

AMY: We developed a digital flourishing model and it looks very much like a colorful wheel. We put technology smack dab in the middle of the wellness wheel, because we think it’s that central to what’s happening to us as humans.

We put eight other dimensions of wellness on the outside—things like productivity, environment, mental health, physical health, relationships, your digital citizenship, tech-enabled health. The idea is that all those domains overlap one another like a Venn diagram. But that technology is touching each and every one of those domains. It’s such a time-present part of our lives right now that it’s impossible to separate. Our lives aren’t online. We’re offline, but they’re blended constantly. So, we’ve got to think about this. From an employer perspective, 83 percent of employees are looking to their employers for guidance on how to navigate tech-life balance.

HEATHER: What does that look like? Are they asking their employer to put boundaries?

AMY: I think that there is a request. It’s an unspoken request for employers to have a conversation with employees about boundaries. They’re asking for them. Particularly in high -p erforming companies, it’s about hyper responsibility: Those individuals are trying so hard to respond in 15 minutes. They want to make sure if their boss sends them something

92 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 ICONIC INSIGHTS PODCAST / A MY BLANKSON

In The Future of Happiness, Amy Blankson unveils

FIVE STRATEGIES successful individuals can use, not just to survive—but actually thrive—in the Digital Age:

n STAY GROUNDED to focus your energy and increase productivity

n KNOW THYSELF through app-driven data to strive toward your potential

n TRAIN YOUR BRAIN to develop and sustain an optimistic mindset

n CREATE A HABITAT FOR HAPPINESS to maximize the spaces where you live, work and learn

5

n BE A CONSCIOUS INNOVATOR to help make the world a better place

that they are shooting back, even if it’s 11 p.m. If there’s a Zoom call on the other side of the planet, they will get up at three in the morning to be there.

And it’s going to drive us nuts. It already is. And it’s on a trajectory to get worse over time if we don’t create some framework.

HEATHER: As individual business owners or as leaders in companies, how can we change that narrative consistently by hitting the issues head on? Truly from a we want to make change in the world point of view? How would you encourage direct executive leaders to think about digital wellness?

AMY: I would encourage two things: First, look at your own behaviors and try to optimize for yourself. Think about what would a digitally well or digitally balanced life look like for you, where you’re in control of your tech use. Then make that something you’re modeling to your teams or to the contractors that you’re working with. That might mean shutting off at the end of the day. It could mean that when you’re leaving work, we call it the noisy exit, it means that you’re not quietly slipping away into the

night, but rather saying, “Oh my gosh, look at the time. Man, it’s the end of the day. What are you guys still doing here? Go home. Let’s talk about this tomorrow.” So that way as a leader, you are framing that conversation with some boundaries very positively.

The second thing that I think could be the most helpful strategy is what we call working really hard to avoid phubbing. In digital wellness speak, “phubbing” is phone snubbing. And it is something we’ve all experienced. It is that moment where you are having a conversation with somebody and all of a sudden, they get a text message and suddenly they are looking at their phone. And it could be a spam message, it could be not even related to what you’re doing or even important, but they’ve just broken contact with you.

Suddenly you lose a little bit of charisma, you lose that connection piece, and you probably lost focus as well. What we’re finding is that from a leadership perspective is, really being able to dial into eye contact means putting your phone in your back pocket or in a bag or behind your laptop screen so that when you are trying to connect with somebody, so that is not pulling away your attention.

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FRESH PERSPECTIVES

DSA Annual Meeting

June 14-16, 2023 . Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, Arizona

10 WORLD CLASS SPEAKERS ON THE HOTTEST TOPICS AFFECTING DIRECT SELLING

Retaining Your Talent in an Evolving Market

JOEY COLEMAN

Customer Relationship Experience Expert and Best-Selling Author

Fear Less, Do More: Finding the Confidence and Strength for Leading Today

JUDI HOLLER

Podcaster, Speaker and Thought Leader

Leading with Vision, Charting the Course Ahead

ALISON LEVINE

Team Captain, First American Women’s Everest Expedition and NYT Best-Selling Author

The Path to Creating Customer Value through Technology and Innovation

BRIAN FANZO

Digital Futurist and Top 20 Digital Transformation

Influencer

Master of Ceremonies

TARA RENZE

Emotional & Positive Intelligence Practitioner, Podcaster, and Thought Leader

Becoming an Influencer Among Influencers

JULIE MASTERS

CEO of Influence Nation

DIRECT SELLING THOUGHT LEADERS

Digital Persuasion: Navigating the AI Revolution

ERIN KING

Digital Persuasion Expert, Bestselling Author, and Chief Digital Officer of Strikepoint Media

Empowering Your Salesforce with New Ways to Build Engagement and Community on Social SAMANTHA HIND

Social Media Coach and Director of Auxano Marketing

DSA Social Media Guidelines and Latest Best Practices for the Field

SCOTT KRAMER

Digital Trend Forecaster and Social Selling Pro

Built for Buy-In

TAMSEN WEBSTER

Message Strategist and Storyteller

JONI ROGERS-

SeneGence

THANK YOU TO OUR 2023 SPONSORS

BRIAN GILL 4Life KEVIN GUEST USANA Health Sciences, Inc. DR. KENT GRAYSON Northwestern University DANNY LEE 4Life JOSEPH MARIANO Direct Selling Association PAULO MOLEDO Hy Cite Enterprises KANTE
Visit ENGAGE.DSA.ORG to Register Today!

Two Years Have Flown

By: It’s Time To Recertify! A

S I LOOK BACK at how much the channel has raised the bar for direct selling, the achievements of the Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council (DSSRC) are at my mind’s forefront.

The DSSRC’s 2021 Year-End Program Activity Report details direct selling’s commitment to self-regulation. The report includes details about DSSRC’s monitoring of advertising and marketing across the direct selling industry, its casework and ongoing education for the industry.

This past year, the change of administration at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on the business community underscored the importance of the direct selling industry’s commitment to independent self-regulation. Just as important is how individual executives have embraced new educational opportunities that blend our channel’s innovative spirit with best practices.

To illustrate this point, one need look no further than the first class of Direct Selling Certified Professionals, which included 196 member and non-member direct selling executives who earned their DSCP-CP in 2021. In fact, the inaugural DSCP-CP class members became the first executives to be recertified in April 2023.

The Direct Selling Compliance Professional Certification Program (DSCP-CP), a certification program modeled after other successful industry certification programs, was developed by DSA in partnership with the law firms of BakerHostetler and Kelley Drye & Warren LLP.

The program has positively impacted direct selling executives’ comprehension of key legal and regulatory concepts. It delivers clear, direct

guidance on claims and other company policies to enable participants to ensure they adhere to legal and regulatory requirements. The four-day virtual class breaks down complex legal issues and distills difficult concepts into digestible pieces leaving test takers with understandable concepts.

Individuals who have earned their DSCP professional certification become recertified every two years. Part of recertification is the requirement to participate in ten continuing education hours to earn ten DSCP-CP Learning Credits (DLCs).

Attendance at the annual DSA Legal & Regulatory, DSA ENGAGE or Sales & Marketing Conferences provides significant DLC credits as does attending either the General Counsel or Compliance Summits.

Professionals may also earn DLCs through DSA Webinars. We offer six to eight legal webinars annually that are complimentary for members. Webinars that enable professionals to earn DLCs will be marked with the DSCP Learning Credit (DLC) badge.

DSA and company leaders in the direct selling channel are committed to legal and regulatory compliance. We know that when we follow best practices, growth accelerates. Building the channel’s reputation through programs like the DSCP-CP is paramount to DSA’s efforts to promote and protect the channel’s marketleading brands; the salesforce who are these brands’ ambassadors; and customers who love the innovative products we bring to market.

For more information about how to continue raising the bar for direct selling by obtaining your DSCP-CP, please visit DSA.org. DSN

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#COMMUNITY #STRONGERTOGETHER
MELISSA

DIRECTORY SQUIRE

1329 South 800 East Orem, UT 84097 801-515-0977

squire.com

For nearly 50 years, Squire & Company has provided financial excellence and NetSuite expertise for clients in the Direct Selling industry. We offer personal service, responsiveness, and expertise in all areas.

PAYQUICKER

400 Linden Oaks, Suite 320 Rochester, NY 14625 844-258-3006 payquicker.com

PayQuicker is the leading global payout provider to direct selling organizations. Instantly make secure and compliant payouts to your field in local currency across the globe with our award-winning solution that provides the largest selection of flexible and modern spend options.

MINER GROUP LLC

11905 Sara Road Laredo, TX 78045 956-712-8842

minergroup.net

Miner Group LLC offers solutions for the Mexican Market! For over 30 years, we have helped companies expand to or optimize their operations in Mexico. We offer product and ingredient evaluations, customs clearance, regulatory compliance, label translations, and logistic services for the Mexican market.

I-PAYOUT

540 NE 4th Street Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301 866-218-4668 discover@i-payout.com i-payout.com

Since 2007 i-payout has been the leading payment choice for pay out and pay in solutions. We pride ourselves on exceptional service paired with integrated and customized solutions.

CP & KRELL GROUP

Keller, TX 817-697-4321 cpkrell.com

Landing a more sophisticated brand of talent takes a more sophisticated recruiting partner.

Bringing 25 years of Direct Sales executivelevel experience from around the world and with a Team speaking 5 languages we know what it looks like to have success in a diverse and international environment. Our goal is to become an extension of your brand.

COMPLETE MERCHANT SOLUTIONS

727 North 1550 East 3rd Floor, Orem, UT 84097 877-267-4324

cmsonline.com

Complete Merchant Solutions (CMS) is a full-service US merchant account provider representing multiple banks. CMS safely and securely supports many types of payment processing for direct selling companies.

LACORE PAYMENT TECHNOLOGIES

900 Wilmeth Road, McKinney, TX 75069 info@lacoretechnologies.com lacorepayments.com

LaCore Payment Technologies is a payment platform designed to support direct selling companies globally. Our services include: Global connectivity to 150 countries in 50 currencies, including direct connectivity to most alternative payment types, secure tokenization, customized fraud solutions, including our proprietary Fraudhawk™, advanced reporting tools, and online dispute management.

STRATEGIC CHOICE PARTNERS

2201 Long Prairie Road, Ste. 107-316 Flower Mound, TX 75022 407-891-9265 strategicchoicepartners.com

SCP offers the most holistic consulting services specific to direct selling companies today. We’ve worked with more than 70 companies over the last three years alone, and served more than 250 years collectively in the industry.

METRICS GLOBAL, INC

1160 N. Town Center Drive, Ste. 100 Las Vegas, NV 89144 702-757-9600

info@metricsglobal.com

metricsglobal.com

We are the industry’s leading payments partner, long-established advocate, and problem-solver. Our unified commerce & payments platform will connect you to a global marketplace, enable your international expansion strategy, and fuel your exponential growth plans. Let us show you how.

96 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 SUPPLIER
COMMISSION PAYMENT SERVICES
COMMISSION PAYMENT SERVICES
ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE/SERVICES
CUSTOMS CLEARANCE, EXPORTS, LOGISTICS
CONSULTANTS/MANAGEMENT CREDIT CARD/PAYMENT PROCESSING

NEXIO

727 N 1550 E, 3rd Floor Orem, UT 84097

1-877-551-5504

nex.io

Nexio manages the chaos of payments offering:

• Faster roll out for distributors or partners

• Simplifies payment processing for corporations

Nexio does this by being integrated with the majority of back-office software solutions in the Direct Sales Industry.

AMWARE FULFILLMENT

4505 Newpoint Place Lawrenceville, GA 30043 866-888-2999

Sales@amwarelogistics.com amwarelogistics.com

Handle fulfillment for many direct sellers. DSA member with 15 fulfillment centers, nationwide, for 1–2 day ground delivery to 95% of U.S. population. Offer comprehensive B2C fulfillment services, including complex kitting, plus discounted parcel shipping based on our large volume of freight.

CANADA CARTAGE LOGISTICS SOLUTIONS

1615 Clark Blvd. Brampton, ON Canada L6T 4W1 905-564-2115 x2 canadacartage.com

CCLS is your gateway to turn-key e-commerce sales and distribution in Canada. With fulfillment centers across Canada, our pick, pack and ship options, and real-time inventory visibility, we will help your business grow. We are NHP Site Compliant, Health Canada licensed, and GMP Compliant.

DELIVERZEN FULFILLMENT

1551 Corporate Drive Irving, TX 75038 214-233-6790 deliverzen.com

Deliverzen’s mission is to provide the best service in the order fulfillment industry.

QUICKBOX

Denver (HQ)

11551 E 45th Ave. Unit C. Denver, CO 80239 720-990-5642

quickbox.com

“Whether your products are headed direct to your end customers’ doorstep, to a big box retailer, or to an Amazon warehouse, Quickbox will help you deliver a seamless experience that keeps your customers coming back for more!”

GLOBAL ACCESS

2889 Ashton Blvd, Ste. 350 Salt Lake City, UT 84070 877-811-8108 globalaccess.com

International expansion expertise and technology and logistics solutions that grow clients’ businesses and brands around the world.

KATAPULT EVENTS

5840 Red Bug Lake Rd, Ste. 140 Winter Springs, FL 32708 407-915-9060 katapultevents.com

Fresh. Exciting. Bold. Your field deserves the best and we help you deliver. Out-of-the-box creative production with experienced show management. We execute on budget and make you look AMAZING!

LACORE LOGISTICS

900 Wilmeth Road, McKinney, TX 75069 214-817-4802 lacorelogistics.com

LaCore Logistics provides distribution and order fulfillment services. Our highly automated distribution center provides both domestic and international direct-to-consumer shipping solutions. We offer omni-channel fulfillment solutions ranging from marketplace fulfillment for leading marketplaces to businessto-business fulfillment for leading retailers.

MULTI IMAGE GROUP

1701 Clint Moore Road Boca Raton, FL 33487 800-523-2682 mig.cc

Founded in 1979, Multi Image Group (MIG) is a women-owned, family-run creative event production company fueled by innovators, strategists, and technologists who craft custom live, hybrid & virtual experiences for some of the world’s biggest brands.

directsellingnews.com 97 TO BE INCLUDED IN THE SUPPLIER DIRECTORY, EMAIL ADVERTISING@DIRECTSELLINGNEWS.COM
DISTRIBUTION/FULFILLMENT/LOGISTICS
EVENT PRODUCTION
DISTRIBUTION/FULFILLMENT/LOGISTICS CREDIT CARD/PAYMENT PROCESSING
DISTRIBUTION/FULFILLMENT/LOGISTICS

DIRECTORY

HANNA SHEA

844-344-7177

hannashea.com

Since 2007, Hanna Shea Executive Search has been the go-to search firm in support of the direct selling industry. Hanna Shea finds top talent for companies in need of building or improving an executive leadership team for organizational success.

ROYAL CARIBBEAN INTERNATIONAL

1080 Caribbean Way Miami, FL 33132

Royal Caribbean International’s Corporate Sales Team

800-345-7225 (SELECT 2, THEN 1) royalcaribbeanincentives.com

ICONIC SHIPS. EPIC ADVENTURES. ULTIMATE EVENTS.

Royal Caribbean® transforms events into the ultimate productivity paradise. Impress your attendees with epic venues, vibrant restaurants, onboard thrills and beautiful destinations.

CUSTOM TRAVEL SOLUTIONS

27 S Main St #17

Travelers Rest, SC 29690

864-990-3074

customtravelsolutions.com

Recruit and retain the right people for your organization — We are the world’s largest “white label” travel club builder.

FUTURECEUTICALS

2692 N. State Route 1-17, Momence, IL 60954 888-452-6853 futureceuticals.com

Fruit, vegetable, and grain-based solutions backed with evidence-based, marketable claims.

NOW TECH

5717 Legacy Drive, Suite 250, Plano, TX 75024 310-428-9936

now-tech.com

With over 35 years of industry experience, NOW Technologies is the premier provider of mobile tech tools designed to grow revenue and recruiting for our Direct Selling clients. The NOW platform provides powerful features such as sampling, social selling solutions, smart alerts, prospecting tools, content management, and onboarding & training capabilities.

BYDESIGN TECHNOLOGIES

9503 Princess Palm Avenue Tampa, FL 33619 813-253-2235

bydesign.com

Award-winning social commerce software for affiliate, influencer, MLM, party plan, and social retail companies. Our turnkey back-office solutions include Wayroo, delivering advanced commerce, comment selling, and payment solutions.

E.A. DION, INC.

33 Franklin McKay Road

Attleboro, MA 02703

800-445-1007

eadion.com

Dion’s jewelry solutions are perfect for career path, sales & recruiting, corporate anniversaries and incentive travel recognition awards.

MOMENTUM FACTOR

4801 Spicewood Springs Road Ste. 250, Austin, TX 78759 512-690-2134 momofactor.com

Momentum Factor is a leading digital risk management firm specializing in online compliance monitoring and global online reputation management services for the direct selling industry. Our passion and mission are to protect companies from the brand and regulatory risks associated with online and social media technologies.

EXIGO

1600 Viceroy Dr., Suite 125 Dallas, TX 75235

214-367-9933

exigo.com

The global leader in cloud-based Platformas-a-Service (PaaS) for direct selling companies. An open framework for billiondollar giants to startup companies. Exigo supports MLM, Party Plan and Affiliate models, operating in single global markets.

98 D IRECT SELLING NEWS | M AY 2023 SUPPLIER
INCENTIVES/RECOGNITION
SOLUTIONS
EXECUTIVE
MARKETING/BRANDING
INCENTIVES/RECOGNITION INGREDIENTS AND MANUFACTURING SOFTWARE/TECHNOLOGY
LEGAL AND COMPLIANCE
RECRUITMENT

FLIGHT COMMERCE

1208 E. Kennedy Blvd., Ste. 222 Tampa, FL 33602 813-277-0625

flightcommerce.com

Global Operations Management Software. Advanced Comp Plan Programming. Sales Force Backoffice & Automation. Web Site Design & Replication.

THATCHER TECHNOLOGY GROUP, LLC

55 Shuman Blvd., Ste. 350 Naperville, IL 60563 866-698-3848

thatchertech.com

Thatcher Technology Group provides Sales Force, Compensation and Incentive Management Software for the Direct Selling Industry.

XIRECT SOFTWARE SOLUTIONS

686 E 110 S Unit 104 American Fork, UT 84003 385-448-1800 xirect.com

Scalable software from startup to enterprise. Your delivery expert in Commissions Calc / Consulting, Replicating Websites, E-Commerce, Reporting, Promotions, Localization, Multi-Currency, and more- The Perfect Cloud-based Direct Selling Software Partner!

INFOTRAX SYSTEMS

1875 S. State Street, Ste. 3000 Orem, UT 84097 801-431-4900

infotraxsys.com

Software & SaaS solutions for startup, emerging, and global direct selling companies. See our ad on the back cover.

JENKON

915 Broadway Street, Ste. 400 Vancouver, WA 98660 360-256-4400

jenkon.com

“Innovation and stability are central to 5 decades of unprecedented, multinational success. JoT™, the Jenkon of Things, is a suite of digital commerce and sales performance technologies delivering state of the art user experiences. The newest solution: JoTLive Shopping integrates with any enterprise.”

directsellingnews.com 99 TO BE INCLUDED IN THE SUPPLIER DIRECTORY, EMAIL ADVERTISING@DIRECTSELLINGNEWS.COM
Celebrity Cruises 800-722-5934 / CELEBRITYCORPORATEKIT.COM
SOFTWARE/TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONS
DSN has been an incredible partner for us in matching our award winning incentive and meeting opportunities onboard our ships to their talented readers. Direct selling companies have been finding us for individual incentive awards, group travel and full ship charters due to the great exposure we get from DSN.
SOLUTIONS
—RON GULASKEY / AVP, Global Corporate, Incentive & Charter Sales, Celebrity Cruises
SOFTWARE/TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONS SOFTWARE/TECHNOLOGY

• Influence Distributor behavior with ‘MyDay’ journeys for customer and distributor acquisition, training, rank advancement, and more!

• Strengthen the connection to your field with a direct and instant line of communication via alerts, email blasts, drip funnels, and text.

• Empower your Distributors with NOW Commerce tools that accelerate sales and acquire new customers and convert them to ambassadors.

Make a Difference in Your Distributors’ First 60 Days by Enabling Integrated Success Systems
Learn more! | www.now-tech.com | info@now-tech.com
A liate Programs for Direct Sellers Supports sales rep, influencer & company-produced shows Integrates with any enterprise system Simple & inexpensive to use Allows ordering from past shows VISIT US AT jenkon.com Growing customer relationships is the future of direct selling. Incentivize retail customers to easily share their excitement for your products. Today’s software technology allows your sales force to receive their commissions, while you reach an entirely new ecosystem of empowered consumers. Contact Jenkon today to discuss how. Livestream Shopping for Direct Sellers Digital Commerce Next innovation +1 360 256 4400 Live Shopping will grow to $600B worldwide in 2023. JoTLive is the revolution of online direct selling.
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