Tori Molnar, Utoria
Kelly McDonald: Changing Demographics & How This Affects Your Business, Today & Tomorrow
Thursday, December 6
The Kinship Economy: Profiting from Process, People and Purpose
Be in attendance when we hear from J. Walker Smith of The Futures Company as he discusses how the demographic handoff from boomers to millennials and how the technology shift to social and mobile has fundamentally changed consumer priorities. The future is an economy of social relationships—not brand relationships. Direct sellers are uniquely situated to capitalize on this, but what do you need to know to do it right?
Putting Communications in Context
Thursday's lunch will continue as Anne Aldrich from Artemis Strategy Group provides an overview and analysis of the findings from three key pieces of DSA research being conducted this fall: the National Salesforce Survey, the Consumer Attitudes Benchmarking Survey and the Sales Strategy Survey. These are key pieces of information you'll want to be in the room to hear.
Pack a Present, Bring a Toy
Give Kids in South Bay Some Holiday Joy
Bring a toy to DSA's Communications & Marketing Conference to benefit South Bay Area Boys & Girls Clubs members! To help make the holidays a little brighter for area kids, DSEF is partnering with the Boys & Girls Club of South Bay for its annual "Pack a Present" Toy Drive.
DSEF will collect the toys during DSA's Marketing & Communications Conference from Dec. 5-6. On Thursday, Dec. 6, Boys & Girls Clubs representatives will bring a group of children to the hotel during the Holiday Reception to enjoy hot chocolate and cookies with Santa and receive the gifts.
While donated gifts may be for children of any age, gifts for teens are especially needed. Cash gifts are also welcome and all gifts should be in their original packaging and not gift-wrapped. For more information, contact Tamara Ingram.
DSEF appreciates the generosity of 4Life Research, LLC, Amway and Team National for co-sponsoring this event.
The New Breed of Communications & Marketing Leaders
Social and digital media, globalization and other developments are reshaping the nature and practice of communications as a specialization. As we continue to see material changes in the types of people who excel in this area, the profession itself is being transformed—managers and leaders with new and somewhat different skills are in high demand, and personal qualities and expertise are a must. During this workshop, you'll hear from an industry veteran about what he has done to define the core competencies for managers and leaders in the 21st century's communications profession. This work is influenced by the "Building Belief" model introduced earlier this year by the Arthur W. Page Society, and borrows from other leadership and professional development models to take our thinking about communications talent to a deeper level than ever before.
Mark Bain, Upper 90 Consulting
John Parker, Chief Sales Officer, Amway
Building Buzz and Crafting Connection
Social media serves as a fun way to create casual connections with your distributors and fans. What if you could use it to build real-time buzz around an event and even connect effectively with those not able to attend? This session will show you how Scentsy choreographed a social media tsunami around its convention using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and more, creating 55 million impressions and personal connections from those following along from home. Learn how you can replicate this model for your own company, as well as how DSA will be using it to create buzz around the 2013 Annual Meeting. You must be present in the session to play an active role in the social media blitz being planned for DSA's Annual Meeting.
John Curtis, VP Communications, Scentsy, Inc.
Crashing the Direct Sales Chasm—Integrating PR Across the Enterprise
Today's growing direct selling companies sell more than products—they sell lifestyle, community and opportunity. They also use technology to effectively communicate their value proposition and employ consistent messaging and actions/behaviors that positively reflect their enterprises to drive momentum. Simply, it's public relations, and if a company doesn't tell its story, others will. While such activities have previously been left to the field, in today's hyper-connected world, your company must take charge and establish its reputation and communicate its culture and the milestones to attract distributors and customers. This session will discuss the over-arching corporate role of public relations in direct selling, as well as how to leverage new and emerging technologies as effective communication platforms. You'll take away:
• A new perspective on public relations and communications based on today's environment
• Specific information on social media tools and trends that you can integrate into your current business and marketing strategy
Kim Sater, Director, Consumer Marketing, Mary Kay Inc.
Bobbie Wasserman, Managing Director, Wave2Alliances
Game Changer: Beating Google's Latest Update and Improving Your Company's Online Reputation
In recent months Google has dramatically changed the way it ranks websites and now methods for online reputation management that have worked for years are no longer effective. This in-depth session will outline exactly what you need to be doing to improve your company's online reputation in light of these changes changes. You'll learn:
• How to take advantage of Apple iTunes to make your company look better and keep your associates more informed
• How to create an effective social circle using Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and YouTube
• Why expanding your press release strategy is critical for your online reputation
• How to properly title, tag and describe your YouTube video so they'll rank on the first page of Google
• Why search term-specific websites no longer matter
• Why Amazon ranks so high and what you can do to take advantage of it
David Sattler, Digital Marketing Manager, Scentsy, Inc.
Don Sorensen, President, Big Blue Robot
Game On!—Using Game Design to Influence Salesforce Behavior
One of the most important goals of any technology for your field is to motivate behavior—but when everyone is on "e-overload," what can you do to make sure you're providing an appealing and user-friendly experience that results in the selling and recruiting behaviors you're seeking? One answer is gamification: the use of game-design elements (such as awarding points, badges or other incentives) to make certain activities more enjoyable or easy to understand. Awarding points, creating badges or tokens and rewarding certain behaviors with tangible or intangible benefits is a proven method to motivate your field to act. During this session you'll learn how you can incorporate these elements into your salesforce's toolbox. Attendees will hear from a senior game designer at Badgeville, The Behavior Platform, as he describes what gamification is and how you can use it to drive real results in the salesforce behaviors that matter the most to you.
Tony Ventrice, Lead Game Designer, Badgeville
How to Media Train Your Field
Every company will have its moment in the media spotlight. Sometimes it'll be a welcome opportunity, and in other cases you'll wish you had just stayed in bed that day. But either way, it's likely you'll want, or need, to have one or more of your field sellers talk with a reporter. So how do you make sure your message is accurately portrayed? Advance planning is the name of the game and creating a group of reliable spokespersons won't happen overnight. Hear from one industry-leading company that has implemented a proven system to get the right people trained with the right messages so they are ready for action at a moment's notice.
Kathrina McAfee, Manager, Corporate Communications, Mary Kay Inc.
Partnering with Field Leaders to Amplify Results through Social Media
Direct selling companies have a unique advantage when rolling out social media initiatives: your independent field leaders. This panel will share best practices on partnering with team leaders to amplify social media campaign results, including:
• How to tap into your field leaders to maximize Tweet Chats, iPad apps and Facebook campaigns
• Leveraging Facebook and iPad apps to empower the direct sales channel
• Adapting programs based on lessons learned
Xanthie Drankus, Manager of Social Media, Rodan + Fields Dermatologists
Elana Schuldt, Director of Marketing, Rodan + Fields Dermatologists
New Approaches to Online Training
Every company allocates key resources to creating and refining its training program—and the Internet has introduced a whole new world of possibilities to amp it up. During this workshop, you'll hear from Lifemax about how they enlisted field members to shoot unscripted, candid training videos that resonated well with other sellers and gave viewers a new perspective on their business. Such videos are training their field for future success like no other program they operate. You'll also learn how Morinda Bioactives created an award-winning online training program that features presentations to prepare business-builders for every possible situation. Through the program, field members learn the science behind the products, the history of the company, the best strategies and practices for sharing product and how to take full advantage of the Morinda Bioactives opportunity.
Jonathan Ducos, VP, Operations & Information Technology, Lifemax, Inc.
Buck McMurray, Director of Global Channel Development, Morinda Bioactives
Why Direct Sellers Need Mobile
With the continued increase in smartphone and tablet usage, it's important to arm your distributors with mobile-friendly tools, but these tools need to be easy to use and engaging if they're going to become part of the business. Attend this session to learn how to create game-changing apps that will allow distributors to conduct business with complete mobility, while also providing analytics to help executives understand the field's behaviors in real time. You'll learn:
• Design principles of a great mobile experience
• How mobile devices change the selling process
• Ways you can create system dependency not people dependency
Lionel Carrasco, President, LeapFactor, Inc.
Konrad Mayr, Vice President, Operations, Sabika, Inc.
Using Avatars and Virtual Worlds to Captivate Gen Y
Two billion people regularly visit virtual worlds. How can your company use them and avatars as tools for training and marketing efforts to increase sales, educating and motivating distributors, collecting customer insights for new product development and promoting new products to consumers? Our panelists will use a recent case study from a pilot, DSEF-sponsored, virtual world that was constructed for the Mark. division of Avon to showcase how other direct selling companies can make the most of this technology to bring Gen Y into the fold.
Michael Solomon, Ph.D., Professor of Marketing, Haub School of Business, Saint Joseph's University
Greg Marshall, Ph.D., Charles Harwood Professor of Marketing & Strategy, Rollins College/Crummer Graduate School of Business
Bursting the Bubble: How Technology and Distributor Experience Can Bring Direct Selling into the Mainstream
Direct sellers have always found themselves somewhat isolated from the mainstream. As a result, as many as 70 percent of sellers who quit the business do so before they sell a single product, walking away from the industry without giving it the chance it deserves. We'll explore how this bubble isolates the sales channel from the rest of the marketplace and discuss how new technologies can strengthen and support the distributor experience and play a significant role in bringing direct selling back into popular culture. Attendees will:
• Learn to understand distributor retention from emotional and technological points of view and how the two intertwine
• Gain a better grasp of the types of technology available today
• Gain a deeper understanding of the field perspective and how a powerful and simple user experience is critical to making these technologies work
Kim Sater, Director, Consumer Marketing, Mary Kay Inc.
Michel Bayan, President/Co-Founder, Atlas Apps (Moderator)
Scott Nelson, Senior Director, Marketing Technology, XANGO, LLC
Creating Community Through Content
Amway North America will share how it has increased engagement and fans across its U.S. social media properties by broadening its content mix, stepping up the use of multimedia, increasing fan interaction and conducting more online influencer outreach. Specific examples discussed will include:
• Leveraging multimedia to increase engagement
• Covering events and using live streaming to create compelling content
• Executing Twitter parties to build buzz and garner impressions
• Working with bloggers to expand reach outside your fan base
Neely Adkins, Online Community Manager, Amway North America
Anna Bryce, Manager, Public Relations and Social Media, Amway North America
Chris Koops, Online Community Manager, Amway North America
December 5, 2012
8:00 a.m.: Registration
9:00 a.m.: Welcome & Introductions
9:30 a.m. Finding the Right Marketing Plan
It's your salesforce that makes your direct selling company different from other companies in other sales channels, right? But how do you figure out how your salesforce members should make their sales – and what are your options? During this session, you'll find out:
• The three different plans from which you can pick
• How your product line can affect your choice
• Why choosing well matters for your future growth
• Successful methods to put your plan to work for your company
Pam Dean, CEO, Avalla
10:00 a.m. Compensation Plan Design Essentials
Distributor commissions are what set direct selling apart most from all other business models. Missing your compass on this subject? Or are you re-evaluating your company's current plan and you're not sure where to start? We'll help you through this important process, preparing you with:
• Designs that insure everyone wins
• Principles to guarantee success—if you follow them
• Details about paying your salesforce well without bankrupting your company
• How-tos for syncing your compensation and marketing plans to drive the right behaviors
10:30 a.m. Key Operating Indicators
Every company, direct selling or otherwise, needs to pay attention to key operating indicators – the measurements that tell you everything's OK (or not….). So, to what do direct selling companies pay attention, and how do you tell if your numbers are acceptable? Your discussion leader will cover:
• The metrics to which you need to pay the most attention—and why
• Signs that the numbers are headed in the wrong direction—and how to turn them around
Alan Luce, President, Luce, Murphy, Fong & Associates, LLC
11:00 a.m. New Company Case Studies
Just as Rome wasn't built in a day, every company endures a host of triumphs and challenges in its early days. Luckily for you, knowing about the hardships you could face is half the battle. During this session, you'll hear from executives from two successful companies and find out how they have each achieved early success and learn more about what mistakes they would advise you to avoid. They'll share:
• Critical learning opportunities they've experienced in their first few years
• Lessons they've learned as they've put theory into action
• Highlights of their operations and inspirational moments that have carried them on
Mike Collins, President, LifeWave, Inc.
Gabrielle DeSantis, CEO & Co-Founder, Gigi Hill, Inc.
Monica Hillman, President & Co-Founder, Gigi Hill, Inc.
Noon: Lunch with DSA/DSEF Industry Leaders
Swap ideas and insights with some of the biggest names in the direct sales channel during this networking lunch event. Bring your questions—and an empty stomach—and learn more about the faces behind many of today's top direct selling companies.
1:30 p.m.: Industry Overview—What Drives Your Business
In a world so impacted by financial crises and the effects of globalization, direct selling is positioned to grow in the coming years. But you'll need to cater to new demographics—such as Gen Y—and find out what skills and talents you need in the field in order to drive growth to make the most of the opportunity. Hear from DSA President Joe Mariano as he:
• Identifies the latest industry trends and behaviors that will impact your company
• Reviews the effects this year's legislation have had on direct selling—and what you should be prepared to see in the next few years
• Why any of this—and DSA's role in it—should matter to your company (no matter how long you've been in business)
Joe Mariano, President, Direct Selling Association
2:00 p.m.: Sales & Marketing Basics
Unfortunately for business owners, products don't simply sell themselves. Growth and revenue rely on many different factors including your company's ability to attract and develop talent internally, recruit and retain a dynamic salesforce, nurture a vibrant culture and remain competitive in the marketplace. During this session, you'll learn:
• Where your first distributors come from
• How to develop leaders—and how they build teams under them
• What it takes to attract and cultivate creative minds to ensure your company consistently rolls out competitive products in line with your company vision
• How to ensure your company remains consistent in its branding and marketing efforts
Cindy Monroe, Founder & CEO, Thirty-One Gifts
2:45 p.m.: Building Your Business—Internal Structure
While the success of your business is largely determined by the members of your field, your internal staff plays a major role in the development of your company's culture. During this session, you'll have the unique opportunity to hear how this fast-growth company:
• Developed effective operating procedures from the start
• Consistently attracts team members who have supported the company's vision throughout their growth
3:20 p.m.: Working with a Volunteer Salesforce
You know direct selling is different from other sales channels, but it's about more than just a marketing plan or a commission payout. We'll plunge into industry philosophy in this course, as we discuss:
• Why distributor buy-in is a critical component of your company's success in a way that no other factor can claim
• How to earn your distributors' trust and why you must do so
• The four constituencies you need to consider as part of every business decision and what the answers mean for your chosen course
Alan Luce, President, Luce, Murphy, Fong & Associates, LLC
3:45 p.m.: Stretch Break
4:00 p.m.: Your Technology Toolbox
Technology is not only reshaping the way direct selling companies communicate with consumers and distributors—it's also changing how companies operate internally. If you're looking to implement the latest and greatest systems to support your company's and distributors' needs, you'll want to hear from the experts how today's emerging technology could transform how your company operates in the months and years ahead. During this session, you'll learn:
• The various technologies available get your company going—and what can wait until you're fully off the ground
• Important questions to ask internally before you even talk to a vendor
• Preparing for any situation that comes along, including those you don't know exist yet
Cynthia Tysinger, CEO & Founder, GSATi
4:30 p.m.: I Wish I Had Known...
It is often said that one of the most unique aspects of direct selling is that the sales channel fosters a culture of sharing—even among competitors. Whether you're new to the industry or you've been around for years, there's no doubt another direct selling executive has faced many of the challenges and decisions you encounter on a daily basis. Make the most of this one-of-a-kind opportunity to hear from executives from a variety of direct selling companies as they share with you their lessons learned and provide you with invaluable Q&A opportunities.
Traci Lynn Burton, Founder & CEO, Traci Lynn Fashion Jewelry
Damien Douchet, CEO, H2O at Home
Susan O'Brien Huneke, CEO & Founder, Pink Papaya, LLC
Stephanie White, CEO, Become International, Inc.
5:15 p.m.: Putting Lessons Learned into Practice
Now that you've tackled the basics of marketing, compensation plans, key operating indicators and working with a volunteer salesforce, find out how you can best prioritize your company's needs and put into practice what you've learned once you return to the office. Participate in this open discussion to fully understand the essential, critical, and imperative actions your company needs to take in order to drive your business in the months and years ahead. This discussion will cover:
• Why your company must uphold the highest standards of ethics, principles and values in order to be competitive in the market
• What your company can do to encourage and promote the value of personal development internally as well as in the field
• Ways in which your company can implement fun and appealing training methods to get your distributors excited about their businesses
• Why inspiration and recognition are imperative to your company's long-term success
John Fleming, Publisher & Editor in Chief, Direct Selling News
5:45 p.m.: Wrap Up
6:00 p.m.: Hollywood Glam Reception
Join Communications & Marketing Conference attendees for the Hollywood Glam Reception to kick off the conference, continue to network with your peers and take a look at some of the best digital media projects direct selling has produced this year!