2013 Be Connected Conference

General Session Presentations
DSEF Pack a Present Breakfast with Santa
Smart Start Seminar
Be Connected Workshops

General Session Presentations

Keynote Speaker Ken Schmidt!

Ken Schmidt has lived a life that most can only dream about. As the former director of communications for Harley-Davidson Motor Company, he played an active role in one of the most celebrated turnarounds in corporate history, and got paid to ride motorcycles! A member of the Harley-Davidson turnaround executive team, Ken is an expert at creating demand for and selling of "the invisible" in an age when customers see little difference among competing companies and the products they sell. High energy, honest and passionate, he has the expertise to help revitalize and inspire your business. In his own words, "What are you willing to do today that's different than what you did yesterday, for the people who can put you out of business tomorrow?"

State of Direct Selling in the U.S.

Your company and other DSA members have provided DSA with a tremendous amount of information about your company, your field and your sales strategy. Now it's time to put all the pieces together! Artemis Strategy Group will provide attendees with an overview of what direct selling looks like in the United States from a variety of angles, helping you better marketing your products and opportunity to the right people at the right time! Prepare to be fascinated!

Back to the Basics: Telling Your Story in a Social Media World

Looking to find a balance between today’s social media craze and traditional PR tactics that are as relevant today as they were 10 years ago? Kathy Baird, Senior Vice President of the Social@Ogilvy team, will explore this topic with us! Specializing in counseling companies of all shapes and sizes on how to create truly integrated communications, Kathy will help you determine the best way to assemble a communications strategy that balances the tried-and-true with the trendy for the well-rounded media coverage you crave.
Kathy Baird, Senior Vice President, Social@Ogilvy, Ogilvy Washington

Mitigating Risk in Perilous Times: What Main Street Must Learn From Wall Street

For both private and public companies, the problems beleaguering Wall Street provide urgent lessons in how businesses must communicate -- internally, to investors, the media, and on the Internet – if they are to persevere against potential devastating marketplace crises. Main Street companies, especially those susceptible to unwanted regulatory interest, need digital and social strategies that work ahead of the problem. Companies that are prey to public sector antagonists, activist investors, and a relentless plaintiffs’ bar must find their voice and communicate their positive contributions to shareholders and consumers before positions harden and antagonists control the message.
Richard Levick, President & CEO, Levick

DSEF Holds Fourth-Annual Pack a Present Toy Drive
When you’re packing your bags for D.C., don’t forget to leave room in your suitcase for a gift for a child in need! This year, the Direct Selling Education Foundation is partnering with the YMCA of Metropolitan Washington for its Fourth-Annual Pack a Present toy drive. DSEF will be on hand to collect your donations* throughout the Be Connected Conference, and on Friday, Dec. 6, YMCA representatives will bring a group of children to the hotel for breakfast and photos with Santa.

*While donated gifts may be for children of any age, gifts for teens are especially needed. Cash gifts or gift cards are also welcome and all items should be in their original packaging and not gift-wrapped.

Smart Start Seminar

This full-day seminar provides a thorough understanding of the essentials of direct selling—the all-important “whats” and “hows” that go into a successful direct selling business. You will come away with proven techniques and practical knowledge that will immediately enhance your understanding of this sales channel. Taught by industry leaders, you will take away important information and answers to your most pressing questions.

9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
Direct Selling 101: Introducing a Completely Unique Way to Sell Products

Direct selling is the age old sales method of conducting sales directly with an individual away from a fixed retail location. But, there’s more to the story than the simple sale of products, and this sales channel is fundamentally different from other distribution channels. Learn what accounts for those differences and how successful companies must structure their operations around the unique philosophies associated with specific direct selling principles. We’ll also discuss hiring staff who can understand the differences and act appropriately on them.
Pam Dean, CEO, Uppercase Living

9:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m.
State of Direct Selling

Direct selling has grown significantly this year. In fact, year-over-year U.S. direct sales increased 5.9 percent in 2012 from $29.87 billion to $31.63 billion, outpacing the U.S. economy as measured by gross domestic product. This session will provide start with the stats and then delve into where direct selling has been and where it is headed as we examine current trends, opportunities and challenges. We’ll also discuss who is likely to become a direct seller and why it is important for you to understand these mindsets when building your business.
Joseph Mariano, President, Direct Selling Association

9:45 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
The Importance of Being Ethical

For as long as sellers have been going door-to-door with their wares, there have been scam artists right behind them, giving them a bad name. For the past 100 years, DSA has been tirelessly working to keep legitimate companies in business, responding to marketplace pressures for ethical sales tactics, return policies, respect for privacy and other demands. The Code of Ethics was enacted in the 1970s as a landmark self-regulatory action on the part of the association to protect the consumer and today it protects consumers, field sellers and the company through its tenets. This discussion will help you understand what the Code promises, the federal regulations behind it and how it impacts the public’s perception of the sales channel.
Adolfo Franco, Executive Vice President, Direct Selling Association

10:00 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.
Key Operating Indicators: Measuring Your Salesforce Performance

All direct selling companies depend on the drive and productivity of their independent salesforce to grow top line sales. Direct sellers cannot control or mandate how much their sellers sell, when they sell, where they sell or how often they do it. The companies must achieve growth and productivity through training programs, the compensation plans, and timely incentive and promotional programs. How do they know what is working and what isn’t? The answer lies in developing and understanding the key salesforce performance indicators. We’ll review the metrics of which you need to be mindful in order to insure that your company is on the right track for success.
Alan Luce, Managing Principal, Luce, Murphy, Fong and Associates, LLC

11:00 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.
What is a Compensation Plan and How Do I Get One?

How your company compensates your salesforce is one of the most critical business decisions you’ll have to make. Understanding the basic principles will help you refine your plan. Whether you are starting your own enterprise or starting your career at an existing one, this session will provide the education you need about direct selling compensation plans. We’ll cover what parts of a plan will drive different behaviors, the role promotions should play without overriding your plan and the metrics at work in a particular product line that impacts how distributors are paid. Most importantly, you’ll see how one slight adjustment can cause a domino effect within your salesforce.
Traci Lynn Burton, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Traci Lynn Fashion Jewelry
Andrea Sherwood, Compensation Plan Specialist, Dan Jensen Consulting

11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Sales & Marketing Basics

Bringing your product to market and getting it into consumers’ hands is complicated. Even the best ideas won’t get to the public if they’re not marketed to the right audience! Where do you find the army of product enthusiasts who will create the word-of-mouth buzz your company needs to be successful? Learn best practices for success from an already established direct selling enterprise as our executive shares how a sales campaign is launched. Want more on this critical topic? Be sure to stay for the Be Connected Conference to learn everything you need to know!
Britney Vickery, CEO & Founder, Initials, Inc.

1:30 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
Field Development

While you’re building your team, be sure you know how to train and develop them too. Your end goal is to have a salesforce that is geared up to recruit more sellers and is motivated to sell your products for a long, long time. We’ll tackle the basics of creating field development programs that foster and develop growth, leadership skills and ethical behaviors. Included in this discussion will be ways in which your company can implement fun and appealing training methods to get your salesforce excited about their businesses and why inspiration and recognition are crucial to your company’s long-term success.
Pam Dean, CEO, Uppercase Living

2:15 p.m. – 3:00 p.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 a veteran executive to find out how his company has achieved early success and learn more about what mistakes they would advise you to avoid. He’ll share:

  • Critical learning opportunities he’s experienced in his first few years
  • Lessons he’s learned as he’s put theory into action
  • Highlights of their operations and inspirational moments that have carried him and his team on


Then hear from another direct selling success story! Make the most of this session as you get an insider’s view of this rising star, as she shares her experience since launch.
Michael Collins, President, LifeWave, Inc.
Mary Hoff, Executive Vice President & National Director, Bellaroma



3:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Technology Needs for Start-Ups

Gone are the days of scheduling books, manual lists, calculators and hand-written letters. Your 21st century business cannot run without technology, but that doesn’t mean you need every bell and whistle before you launch. Our expert will walk you through the must-haves and can-waits to ensure your company is fully operational while taking practical considerations into account.
Konrad Mayr, Vice President, Operations, Sabika, Inc.

3:45 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.
Social Media for Start-Ups

Social media takes time and time comes at a premium for a newly launching enterprise. We’ll explore the social media musts to get you on the right track to an authentic, word-of-mouth campaign, including:

  • Which platforms are nice and which are necessary
  • Online conversation monitoring you’ll be sad if you skip
  • Dos and don’ts for social
  • Usage policies to keep your distributors from going rogue and taking your company name with them


Jennifer Fong, Managing Principal, Luce, Murphy, Fong and Associates, LLC



4:15 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.
A Crash Course in Direct Selling Law

Similar to finance, the way to make sure your company has the legal support it needs is to retain a knowledgeable attorney who knows the ins and outs of direct selling law. But you still need to know the basics, and that’s exactly what this session will provide. We’ll explore:

  • The impact of the independent contractor status in your field
  • Promotion dos and don’ts
  • What federal regulation says about product and opportunity claims


Spencer Reese, Partner, Grimes & Reese



4:45 p.m. – 5:15 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 your company can develop effective operating procedures from the start and consistently attract team members who will support your vision throughout its growth.
Brett Blake, Chief Executive Officer, Jewel Kade

5:15 p.m. – 5:45 p.m.
Lessons Learned

Part of setting up a company is preparing for highs, lows and extremes. Not every decision will be a stellar one, some programs will be tremendous flops and others will succeed beyond your wildest expectations. A panel of today’s speakers will share with you some of their biggest mistakes and successes, as well as what they learned from these experiences to make their companies stronger in the long run.
Brett Blake, Chief Executive Officer, Jewel Kade
Pam Dean, CEO, Uppercase Living
Traci Lynn Burton, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Traci Lynn Fashion Jewelry
Mary Hoff, Executive Vice President & National Director, Bellaroma
Konrad Mayr, Vice President, Operations, Sabika, Inc.
Britney Vickery, CEO & Founder, Initials, Inc.

5:45 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Wrap Up

Bring your final questions to this last session and make sure you have everything you need to have successful year in direct selling! Panelists from throughout the day will be on hand to address your questions.

Be Connected Workshops

Communications & Marketing

Taking Advantage of the World’s Connection Addiction: Going Mobile
More people read personal email on a mobile device than their desktop. Sixty percent of all Internet users access the Internet from their phones. Tablet sales will outpace the sale of desktops in 2014. Mobile commerce represents 15 percent of all e-commerce. The world isn't going mobile, it's already here! During this session you'll learn about topics including:

  • The biggest trends in mobile
  • Do you need a mobile first strategy?
  • Should you choose responsive design or a native app?
  • How does mobile impact your content strategy and can it amp up your user-generated content strategy?

Joanna Pineda, CEO, The Matrix Group International



Mary Kay Case Study: A PR Campaign 50 Years in the Making
When Mary Kay Ash founded her now-iconic company on Sept. 13, 1963, no one could have predicted the ultimate success the company would enjoy—or the vastly different PR landscape that would exist when it celebrated its 50th anniversary. Make the most of this case study as you and your colleagues find out how this industry-leading company created a PR campaign that effectively leveraged traditional media, social media, word of mouth and more, while still remaining true to its founder's legacy.
Rebecca Gibson, Manager, Corporate Communications, Mary Kay Inc.
Crayton Webb, Director, Corporate Communications & Corporate Social Responsibility, Mary Kay Inc.

What's In A Name? Corporate Reputation in Today's Digital World
Now that you have a website and a presence on Twitter and Facebook, how do you maintain control of your brand’s image? Managing your brand’s reputation online takes more than pushing out your message and hoping people hear it. During this session we will discuss the importance of listening, learning and engaging. The process of reputation management in the digital world requires you to identify the individuals who are driving the conversations that matter to you. It means you must adjust your messages to resonate with your target audience. To be successful you must ensure that your customer and stakeholder engagement is meaningful and enhances your reputation.
Claudia Holwill, Edelman Digital DC
Shawn Platt, Communications Director for the Office of the Chief Executive, Amway

Diversity is About More Than Ethnicity: Maximizing the Resonance of Your Messaging
When someone mentions “diversity,” most people think of ethnic diversity, but there’s so much more to it than that. For direct sellers, diversity can also refer to gender, life stage or even the motivation behind becoming a direct seller. Find out in this session how you can promote diversity and empowerment initiatives at your company and the dividends that can be realized through effective messaging. Find out what some companies have done to create a culture that values diversity and how their success has enhanced relationships with employees, distributors and customer populations.
Mona Ameli, General Manager, Belcorp USA
Mike Collins, President, LifeWave, Inc.

Using Google Analytics to Track Social Media ROI
Many companies are using social media, but research tells us that few companies know how to correlate social media efforts with ROI. In this session, we explore the metrics that C-level executives want to see, and then look at how to set up and use Google Analytics to report on these metrics. If you want to know how to use Google Analytics to determine how much revenue and how many leads you’ve gained as a result of your social media campaigns, you won’t want to miss this session.
Justin Cofield, Digital Strategist, CUTCO/Vector Marketing Corp.
Brett Duncan, Vice President, Global Marketing, Mannatech, Inc.
Jennifer Fong, Managing Principal, Luce, Murphy, Fong & Associates, LLC
Dan Murphy, Managing Principal, Luce, Murphy, Fong & Associates, LLC

Best Practices in Handling Tough Situations
Every company, big and small, encounters difficult situations. How they’re handled can affect everything from sales and profits to recruitment and employee morale. In this session, led by the author of What to Say When Things Get Tough, you’ll learn how some of the world’s best communicators successfully steered their organizations through financial problems, product recalls and more. And you’ll walk away with a 10-point plan to prepare yourself and your company for whatever may come your way.
Leonard Greenberger, Partner, Potomac Communications Group, Inc.

Using Research to Appeal to the Media
DSA’s research program produces immense amounts of valuable data—data you can use in your company’s PR efforts to tie your programming to the broader industry perspective. Our panelists will explore how this approach can be integrated into PR strategies to make a better case for companies and the sales channel, whether you’re talking to your local TV station, tweeting or writing a blog post for your corporate website.
Chris Fleury, Ph.D., VP, Public Affairs & Corporate Communications, GfK Custom Research, LLC

Socialize the Enterprise: How to Localize your Social Media
Direct selling companies have begun to embrace social media as a powerful tool in building their brands, but many have yet to figure out how to empower their field in a “controlled” manner to ensure brand consistency, while also directly impacting distributor/customer acquisition and retention. During this session you will explore the “bigger picture” of social media and gain tactical solutions for empowering the field using collaborative communities and a “localized” approach to social media. Hear from one direct selling company that recently implemented these tactics and has seen their reach grow more than 300 percent, overall likes growing more than 75 percent and interactions including shares and comments going through the roof.
Jane Creed, President & CEO, Wine Shop at Home
Scott Kramer, Chief Brain, Multibrain Network, Inc.

How to Promote National Events and Why Social Media is a Must at Live Events
Organizing a national, or even regional, event requires the precise coordination of many moving parts—perhaps the most important of which is convincing members of a volunteer salesforce to take time out of their busy schedules to attend! But what about those who can’t get there? How can you ensure these sellers feel the excitement and motivation, even if their participation is remote via virtual meetings or socila media? Attend this session and discover effective techniques for conveying to your field why they should be a part of your events and great ways you can use social media to make sure those who aren’t there in person can share in the excitement.
Tim Haran, Senior Manager, Social Media, USANA Health Sciences, Inc.
Josh Marx, Marketing Director, Team National
Mark Stastny, Chief Marketing Officer, Scentsy, Inc.

Managing a Crisis via Social Media
Social media is the newest weapon in the communications arsenal that everyone loves—until it’s used against us. Nothing moves faster than negative or inaccurate information that gets an online boost, so how can you stem the tide and turn a bad situation around once the viral machine starts churning? Hear from two companies that have experienced this first-hand and successfully shifted the online dialogue.
Trey Campbell, Director, Communications, Southwestern Advantage
Danae Castellaw, Social Media Marketing Lead, Scentsy, Inc.
Ryan Davis, Social Media Manager, Southwestern Advantage

Salesforce Development

Guerrilla Mentoring
We know mentoring is important, but how important? Via an attendee electronic fact sheet, we will share with you research previously reserved for the halls of academia on the number of mentors you should have, and what happens when you secure those mentors. During the session: Prepare to take part in an interactive, million dollar mentoring exercise: "Guerrilla Mentoring." This is peer mentoring technique used by high level executives and million dollar entrepreneurs and adapted by the Hot Mommas Project SisU Leadership Academy. The goal of this session: Whether you are a mentor, or want to be a mentor, this session will not only benefit you, but create an exponential benefit for your personal and professional networks.
Kathy Korman Frey, Founder, The Hot Mammas Project

A Focus on the People
Your distributors could be awesome at the behaviors that help build successful businesses, but if they’re plagued by personal issues such as low self-esteem, challenges with responsibility, issues with authority or a negative attitude—among others—you’ll find it’s hard for them to tap into their inner “rock star”. This session will focus on programs you can put into place to help your field members find their inner “awesome” so they can be their outer best.
Traci Lynn Burton, Founder & CEO, Traci Lynn Fashion Jewelry
Britney Vickery, CEO & Founder, Initials, Inc.

A Focus on Training
Now that you’ve covered “inner awesome,” it’s time to tackle those business-building skills that will turn your natural rock stars into keen business people. From time management and customer service skills to initiative and budgeting, you’ll learn best practices for training your field to run successful businesses.
Oran Arazi-Gamliel, EVP, Global Strategy & Business Development, Rodan + Fields
Mike Collins, President, LifeWave, Inc.

Turning “Unemployed” into “Entrepreneur”
As U.S. unemployment rates remain high, there is a broad section of the population looking for work, many of whom have skills that would make them ideal for direct selling. This session will examine ways you can work with your field to bring those individuals into your distributor ranks and start them on the road to building a successful business. We’ll explore recruiting tactics, training techniques, personal development challenges and other methods by which you can successfully integrate these hidden entrepreneurs into your salesforce.
Kevin Young, Vice President, Sales, RBC Life
Sterling Chord, Consultant, Direct Sellint Today

Hot Topics in Field Development
Your field members are only as successful as you develop them to be! We’ll make the most of this hour as we discuss why field development is a critical component to your retention numbers. We’ll discuss the top reasons new consultants quit and the programs and tools you need in place to help them overcome these obstacles. Plus, one company leader will share one of the tactics his company provides to help his distributors build better businesses. Topics will include:

  • Online training tools
  • Recruiting basics
  • Field recognition
  • Leadership development

Janet Cronstedt, President, Awakening Worth
Rick Libby, Chief Grape Stomper and Head Cheerleader, Traveling Vineyard
Louis Ross, Vice President, Coach Relations, Team Beachbody