Tag Archives: markethive

The Only One Skill That, If You Have, Will Completely Change Your Life

We all look for the key recipe for the success. The secret element which will make all the difference.
The only true answer doesn’t exist. There’re plenty of skills which once mastered would change your life completely (This article originally appeared on Growthzer).

lifestyle motivation self-control

However, a skill that I believe is incredibly important in today's world, and it's something the vast majority of people lacks, is self-control.

Deeply inside, nobody wants to be unhealthy and practice self-destructing habits. But if you look around, people kill themselves every single day. The death may not come immediately, but it's going to arrive way sooner than it supposed to. Diabetes and cancer are sold on every corner. Profit is what counts to most of the companies, your health doesn't. So it's you who's responsible for controlling yourself.

People waste their most precious resource, which is time, on a daily basis and they'll never get it back.
This is caused by the lack of self-control. As a result, the urges, and today's economy is based on your urges, become more powerful than you're, so you act accordingly, instead of acting the way a disciplined person would.

Now, I'm not trying to say that being extremely disciplined would be a good thing. It definitely wouldn't. The overabundance of self-control is probably as harmful as the dearth of it.

But imagine a life in which you learned how to control yourself so that the obstacles the world throws at you become irrelevant: you just proceed with your goals.

Instead of putting junk into your body, you eat healthy foods, allowing yourself a reward in a form of eating what you want from time to time. This will have a tremendous impact on your health. You no longer have to try out fancy diets. If you eat real food instead of food-like products and you control the amounts, then you won't become overweight no matter how much you want it.

You also begin leading an active lifestyle. Instead of giving up on your New Year's fitness resolutions after two weeks, you hit the gym 3 times a week and walk a few miles on a daily basis.

After a year of controlling just these two areas: which is your plate and your lazy ass, you would already hugely transform your life, not just your body.

Now, let's take it further. We're bombarded with entertainment: Television, video games (which you can now play everywhere and every time because of smartphones), the Internet and so on. All these things can become really harmful once you lack self-control, and as you know, most people do not possess this invaluable skill. So instead of playing video games, watching Television or mindlessly browsing the Internet, which all translates to wasting your time, you read.

You commit to reading two hours a day, which may sound like a lot, but ask yourself how many hours you waste daily on the above three time-suckers. Books are life-changing. We learn through experience, but you can only experience so much in a lifetime. Owing to books, you can learn from other people's lives and apply the lessons during your personal journey. You will not find a highly successful person on this planet who would advise against books. Most of them would highly recommend you to consume them like you'd fast food or sweets.

So now a year goes by and you've been reading two hours a day for twelve months. I won't try to estimate the number of books you'd read, but there's one thing you can be sure of. It would be more than what the vast majority of people will ever read in their lifetime. They won't even read the half of it.

But reading great books without applying what you learn won't lead you to completely changing your life. You need to take action. For every single problem you'll experience in your life there's at least one decent book that offers the solution. To most of your issues, there're dozens of great reads. So now, as you start utilizing your knowledge, because due to self-control you proceed instead of procrastinating, imagine how many obstacles you'd overcome.

I'd like to take it further, so let's continue. As you read for two hours on a daily basis, you eventually become inspired to put your own thoughts on the paper. You realize that you'd love to write a book. The fact is, more than 80% of people wish to, but only 1% of them will ever write a book. And you know why 99% will fail? Because they lack the self-control to do the right thing instead of letting their urges dictate the flow of the day.

Fortunately, that's no longer your problem, so you commit to writing 500 words a day and stick to that for another twelve months. At the end of the year, you end up with more than 180 000 words of content. It may not necessarily be the piece of art comparing to the great writers, but it's definitely a miracle in comparison to what you used to be before you learned the skill of self-control.

Let's assume the positive, because why wouldn't we? Your book turns out to be pretty decent, which you've heard from a few people that you shared your work with. So you hire an editor and graphic designer to prepare it for publishing. Because of the self-publishing movement growing in power, you no longer need to cooperate with the publishing house. You can publish it on Amazon and let the readers judge your words.

More and more positive reviews appear under your name, money starts coming in. Over time, you become a recognized author and you like it so much that you continue polishing your craft. Maybe you'd even quit your job? Every year, you add a new book to your writer's portfolio.

Taking this story further in your imagination will either overwhelm you or inspire you to begin working on your self-control today. There're tons of invaluable skills to learn which has the potential to transform your life, but self-control is the key required to keep working on whatever skill you'd like to develop.

Some people would say that this sounds nice when you read it, but doing is a whole different story. It absolutely is. But why would you expect a miracle, a complete life-transformation caused by ordinary actions.

The society is mostly made of the third type. They just wonder why the heck they're in debt, overweight and miserable. Then there's the second type of people, who start to observe their surroundings more carefully as they become sick of being in the third category. They watch the high-achievers, the men of action. Some of them will eventually take a full responsibility for their lives and join the first type, also know as the happiest and fulfilled people, those who make things happen.

They know that the above scenario is absolutely possible, and the only barrier which separates you from achieving it, is you who need to finally find enough self-control to make it happen.

If you believe that my message is worth spreading, please use the share buttons.

Stephen Hodgkiss
Chief Engineer at MarketHive

markethive.com


 

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member

Markethive Inbound Marketing Tools

Market Hive marketing toolsMy Markethive Site combines many tools all connected together.

This is what makes it such a great inbound marketing strategy. If you join my site for free and begin using these inbound marketing tools it will help rocket your site into the top Google rankings for your business keywords.

On joining you can immediately begin to promote your website. By using our inbound marketing strategy to boost both your Internet ranking and your business presence in your sphere of influence, you can also consider the Markethive site a form of advertising that promotes your services, your business name and your brand name through the use of methods that boost your website’s visibility and reputation.

Making your site easily accessible for those who call for accurate information and appropriate products is not that hard if you have an inbound marketer on your side. Here are several tactics that the Markethive expert site can do for you.

Now you have an abstract of what to work with and what scale looks like. Inbound marketing is a rapidly growing segment in the marketing industry. The result of your inbound marketing can only increase your inbound calls, calls that could be converted into lead generation for your company, an important factor these days.

By standardizing and streamlining the methods and procedures of lead generation through inbound market and the resulting inbound calls, companies like yours could enjoy higher sales.

Inbound marketing for all types of businesses face the need to minimise costs but they also have big needs to run their business.

That being said, the Inbound system Markethive has developed is based on 20 years of Marketing experience and  was written with the intention of sharing not only the why of inbound marketing, but also the how. Markethive has trainings outlining the many things required by your marketing Department

For example Markethive has written its own WordPress Plugin which allows articles posted into you Blog in Markethive to also be posted onto your own domain.

By and large, Markethive is broken up into 6 integrated parts –

Part One: Setting up your Markethive Profile page,

Part Two: writing some content in your autoresponder system,

 

Article by:

Brian Walters – Board of Directors and Alpha Founder.

Market Promotion Site

Brian Walters MarketHive

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member

The Market Hive Auto Responder System

Auto Responders:

You can pick up an Autoresponder for about $20 per month from Aweber or Get Response or try something cheaper like Mail Chimp where you pay per email You need however to be aware that as your mail list grows so do your cost and these can become substantial ($250-500+ per month).

A landing page will cost from $20-200 per month using the likes of Instapage or Unbounce, to around $1250 or upwards for a custom design and don't forget that you will also need a hosting company to host the page, together with a domain name to host your website.

Business Investigation

Quite often when people suggest you look at "XYZ Business" these items are not mentioned, however as you can see they can be a costly overhead.

Other Marketing Tools you need to consider when running your business

  • Keyword Research Tools
  • Campaign Management – This is often forgotten when you first start a business
  • URL short codes
  • WYSIWYG editor
  • WordPress Plugin – The Plugin, so to speak “moves” your blog posts in Market Hive to the outside world to your domain and delivers more power and control to your posts.

The Market Hive WordPress Plugins then offer custom functions and features so that each user can tailor their site to their specific needs. Note that the WordPress Plugin acts as an additional content system to your main site.

The Plugin, so to speak “moves” your blog posts in Market Hive to the outside world to your domain and delivers more power and control to your posts.

So now your blog posts within MarketHive become available to the public via your Domain. That's the whole idea of writing content for a blog.

The WordPress plugin allows you to create blog posts on your WordPress site, as if you created those posts yourself on your site.

Using this system, you can create a mix of content from other members (including groups).

This is powerful because your domain containing the posts is now been put into the traditional “Search Engine Arena” whereas – prior to the WordPress Plugin your content was maybe just in the social arena.

Knowledge Forums

Most people are quite adapt at typing a question into their browsers and then surfing the web for answers, this is quick and easy, however how much are you willing to put your trust in answers supplied by strangers.

Normally it’s better to do your own research, but it can help to get to gather the thoughts of other marketers on forum sites like "Warrior Forum" or "WHAM," who willing share their experience with those just entering the market place.

Using Social Media for your business

There are hundreds of social media sites covering every subject under the sun, however you are best to concentrate in the beginning on the big four, Facebook, Twitter, Google +, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Now Facebook for me is a more about family but it does provide a huge marketing potential which cannot be ignored. LinkedIn on the other hand is more serious and business orientated. Video is certainly on the rise and is becoming an essential element in marketing your business a short 3 minute video being the equivalent of a short 500-600 word blog post.

 

Article by:

Brian Walters – Board of Directors and Alpha Founder.

Market Promotion Site

Brian Walters Market Hive

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member

How To Eliminate 90% Of Your Regret And Anxiety …

How To Eliminate 90% Of Your Regret And Anxiety By Thinking Like A Roman Emperor

Do you know what Steve Jobs, John D. Rockefeller, Amelia Earhart, and Ulysses S. Grant have in common?

They each possessed the talent of turning obstacles into opportunities drawn from the Stoic ideologies of Roman Emperor, Marcus Aurelius.

While living our lives, it’s very likely that you will run into some pretty distressing events, and at other times it’ll seem like everything is running exactly as it should with very few discomforts.

And arguably, the more interesting and worthwhile a life goal is, the more sacrifice and inconvenience will be required from you up front. Yet we often find ourselves complaining about all the little things that happen to us during this path for greatness.

It stems from the false assumption that somehow we can have it all: build that amazing startup and never deal with rejections; live your awesome lifeand remain unexposed by all of its obstacles.

To achieve greatness, you need to re-program your brain to not think this way — it’s unrealistic and self sabotaging. It won’t help you achieve worthwhile goals since worthwhile goals are almost guaranteed to put you through adversity.

Most importantly, your brain is telling you that you are dominated by circumstance and the decisions of other people, instead of letting it be a force of your own. You start to subconsciously prioritize pleasure over pain, making it really hard to truly start executing on your vision.

So the question is not how skilled of an entrepreneur, artist, or writer you are, but can you keep it steady and focus only on what you can change, no matter how much external events may fluctuate?

Part 1: Develop the Skill of Eudaimonia

 

Keeping your irrational emotions in check during tribulations is not easy to develop since your brain is always telling you the react the way it’s been conditioned to. But it’s a skill that can be cultivated so you can focus your energy on solving problems, rather than reacting to them. It’s the key to making your life successful all on your own.

The Greeks refer to this state as Eudaimonia, which is defined as a contented state of happiness. In a more literal sense, eudaimonia means to have a good indwelling spirit to make the right actions. Unfortunately, today we associate ‘happiness’ as a subjective feeling rather than an objective state that characterizes a well-lived life irrespective of the emotional state we experience.

Realize that it isn’t outside influence that make us feel something, it’s our inner thoughts that create our feelings (which often stress us out). When this happens, we point the finger at external events, but all that does is create more conflicts in our minds. When we avoid the reality of an uncomfortable situation — meeting a deadline, boss’s urgent email — we weaken our self-disciple and harm ourselves.

Another way of applying this principle is asking yourself:

Does getting upset or panicking provide your with better options?

Sometimes it does, but more often it does not.

If an emotion can’t change the situation you’re in, it’s likely a destructive one.

I’m not saying to stop feeling everything. If you need to take a moment, go right ahead and feel it. But be prepared to tackle emotions with logic because with enough logical questions and statements you’ll get to the causes, which are much easier to comprehend.

“Today I escaped anxiety. Or no, I discarded it, because it was within me, in my own perceptions — not outside.” — Marcus Aurelius

 

Part 2: Fear nothing

 

Fear can only enter the mind if you want it to. If you choose not to be afraid then fear will simply vanish.

Premeditatio Malorum is the technique of overcoming problems by vividly imagining what it would be like to face those misfortunes in order to practice gratitude and prepare for the worst.

Here’s some of mine:

I imagine losing my startup. We don’t close our next round of funding. Our main customer acquisition channel fizzes out. My co-founder leaves the company.

Everyday when I call my girlfriend, I feel in that moment that it could be the last time I ever speak with her. It keeps my appreciation fresh and strengthens our relationship.

A good one by Steve Jobs is reminding myself that I’ll be dead soon. It could be tomorrow or in another 80 years, but nothing helps me focus more than thinking about death.

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life.” — Steve Jobs

 

Part 3: Use Pain As Your Teacher

 

Just as physical pain is caused by a bodily injuries and sickness, mental distress is caused by the wrong belief system and incorrect judgements.

But living with pain could help us develop endurance and inner calm instead of mentally destructive passions. Remember, emotional reactions are natural — it’s how you respond to them that’s important.

Marcus Aurelius describes pain as something that is neither good nor evil. It’s something that hurts without discrimination, but like everything else in life, it will end eventually.

The Negative Visualization Exercise

 

Here’s a practical exercise I learned from Tim Ferris to accomplish big goals by defining your pains:

  1. Take an 8 x 11 paper and make three columns.
  2. On the top write something big you want to accomplish (quit your job and start a startup, move to Bali, write a fiction novel, whatever).
  3. On the first column write the worst possible things that could happen if you made that decision.
  4. On the next column, write how you could minimize all of that from happening.
  5. On the last one, write how you could get back to where you were originally. Like getting back to the industry you left to start your own business.

I did this when I decided to start LawTrades and not work for a firm straight out of law school. On a scale of 1 to 10 I assigned a pain level of about 3 (I could always work at a law firm if it didn’t pan out) and a life changing score of 10 (wake up everyday loving what I do).

“Named must your fear be before banish it you can” — Yoda

 

Part 4: Respond, Not React

 

Don’t react to the world. You may respond but not react. A response is an action taken based on logic. A reaction is an impulse based on an emotional state. Your reaction will not alter the world. Your reaction only changes you. Your response is what will change the world.

The Cheat Sheet

 

  • All is temporary
  • Do everything as if it were the last thing you do in your life
  • Have nothing you are not prepared to lose
  • Accept what can’t be changed
  • Refuse to be a victim
  • Practice misfortune
  • Negative visualization
  • Don’t let emotions override what your mind tells you

If you enjoyed this piece, hit that cool ‘share’ button to spread the love to the world. Thanks!

 

Stephen Hodgkiss
Chief Engineer at MarketHive
markethive.com 

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member

10 Types of Content That Will Drive You More Traffic

Content marketing is more than writing blogs. Way more

If you’re just getting involved in content marketing, the first thing you need to do is launch your blog and start writing.

Then, when your blog is established and purring along, try throwing in a new type of content. I predict that you’ll immediately see a difference — fresh traffic, targeted visitors, higher conversion rates, and better SEO.

But before I share the 10 types of content that will drive you more traffic, there are a few things you need to know:

You don’t need to try all of these examples – different content types suit different brands in different ways. If you don’t think that a certain type of content will serve you, no problem. This list isn’t about must-haves. It’s about maybes.
Don’t be afraid to try new stuff – I’ve found that some people shy away from new types of content because they think it will take too long, be too hard, or fall flat. I understand your apprehension, but I encourage you to try it anyway. Want to get started with a video? You don’t need to buy a green screen, editing software, or a pro-grade camera. Use your iPhone and your YouTube account. Start small and work your way up.

Pick one and put it in your schedule – if you use a content marketing schedule, slot one or two of these into the editorial calendar for the next month. If you don’t plan it, you probably won’t do it. I challenge you to pick one and give it a try sometime in the next four weeks.

This list is not exhaustive – I encourage you to think of content not in terms of types but ideas. The form that the content takes is secondary. The idea is primary. First, develop your idea. Then, determine what it’s going to look like. The variety of content is endless. Heck, you may even want to invent your own type of content.

So, let’s get started…

Content type #1: Infographics

An infographic is the presentation of information or data in a visual way. Its name sums it up — info + graphic.

Infographics get shared more, viewed more, and loved more than most other content types. They are a powerful way to get your information out there in an explosively visual format. One study found that infographics were liked and shared on social media up to three times more often than other content. The viral potential is there.

How to do it

If you have a graphic designer in your professional network, tap him or her to make an infographic for you. Some graphic artists specialize in infographics. If you have it in your budget, you can use a service like Visual.ly. Infographics typically start at $1,000.

When to use it

Infographics are perfect for communicating almost any idea or concept. Data, research, statistics, and findings work especially well.

Things to keep in mind

Infographics can be expensive. The amount cited above — a thousand dollars — is pretty close to the standard price.

Infographics used to go viral just by virtue of being an infographic. That doesn’t work anymore. Everyone is making infographics. Today, you have to make it really good to make it shareable.

Make a gifographic. Gifographics use the infographic model but feature animated gifs instead of the static images of a conventional infographic. You can check out an example here.

Content type #2: Meme

You’ve seen memes. They’re easy to make. They’re viral. They’re hilarious.

That’s one of the great benefits of memes — their humor. People love something that they can laugh at, share, and get a kick out of.

How to do it

Memes don’t require graphic design skills. Meme Generator and Quick Meme are sites that allow you to add your own text to popular meme images.
Memes may not be the best type of content to share on your blog, but they’re primed for social media outlets. Twitter, Stumbleupon, Pinterest, Reddit, and Tumblr (especially Tumblr) will help your meme to spread.
Memes are just-because content. When the mood hits or a funny idea strikes you, go ahead and meme it.

Things to keep in mind

They are adaptable. The great thing about memes is that they can be adapted for use in any niche. Your niche is neither too narrow nor abstruse to warrant its own meme.

Memes can be low value, so don’t overuse them. When misused, they can devalue the message or brand that you’re trying to promote.

Content type #3: Videos

There’s a world of variety within videos. I could write a whole separate post on different types of videos. No matter what type it is, however, a good video communicates a message in a succinct and memorable way. Done well, a video can be extraordinarily persuasive. This video on Crazy Egg helps to bring in $21k every month.

How to do it

Whether you create a video of an office tour, an explainer video, or a music video (it’s been done), you’ve got to get the script right. A video isn’t only about the moving picture; it’s about the words that you say or display. Check out a few more tips for making an explainer video.
Put the video on YouTube and Vimeo. Both of these video sharing sites are great ways to garner social signals for SEO and improved results for video search itself.

Things to keep in mind

Making a good video is not cheap. You can start small, of course, but contracting a video specialist or a camera crew can cost quite a bit.

Videos aren’t supposed to be long. Two to three minutes is a good length.

Content type #4: Guides

A guide is a detailed and fairly long piece of content. Think of it as an epic blog post. It goes beyond the length, style, and approach of an ordinary blog post. My Advanced Guide series are some of the most popular types of content I’ve ever created. When you check them out, you’ll discover that they have more visual flair and are much longer than my blog articles.

How to do it

Writing a guide requires a good writer, a good designer, and a good idea. The writer needs to produce top-tier content. The designer needs to know how to present that content in an attractive way. And the idea has to be something that your audience wants. You may wish to present the guide as a downloadable PDF.

Things to keep in mind

Guides can be a helpful bait for harvesting email addresses: “I’ll give you this awesome guide if you register your email address.”

A guide needs to look good. Make sure you recruit the services of a capable designer as well as a writer. Readability has as much to do with layout and presentation as it does with great writing style.

Content type #5: Book reviews

A book review is a simple discussion of a book plus your take on it. You recommend good ones, critique not-so-good ones, and share the value that you glean from them. Book reviews are great because they help to position you as a thought leader.

How to do it

A book review can be as complicated or as simple as you want. I suggest a short-and-simple 7-point format:

  • Introduce the book: 1-5 sentences.
  • Introduce the author: 1-5 sentences.
  • Summarize the book’s major points: 1-3 sentences per point.
  • Share what you liked in the book: 1-5 sentences.
  • Share what you didn’t like about the book: 1-5 sentences.
  • Recommend it (or not) to your readers: 1-3 sentences.
  • Provide a call to action: Link to the book.

Things to keep in mind

Book review content works best if you have a readership that is inclined to read books.
Book reviews are especially helpful for thought leadership if you’re able to review new releases or pre-releases or interview the author.

Content type #6: Opinion post (a.k.a. “Rant”)

This style of post is substantially different from your typical blog post, mostly due to its tone. You may be used to publishing a careful and researched discussion of a topic. The rant or opinion, by contrast, may be stronger and more expressive. The more vociferous your position, the more it’s going to get read and shared.

How to do it

Occasionally, write a strong first-person take on a hot topic or big issue. It could be your opinion on a major industry change. I did this when Matt Cutts announced the demise of guest blogging. When you address popular topics, you’re able to get stronger search potential and shareability.

Things to keep in mind

This should not be a daily thing. Someone who is constantly sharing his or her opinions or ranting about a topic can become odious. Use with caution.

Be civil. Don’t let your opinions degenerate into people bashing. “Rant” does not equal “angry.”
Be clear about what you’re doing — that this is your opinion, your take, your position — and be humble about it.

Content type #7: Product reviews

Like the book review, a product review can help establish authority and leadership in your industry. Every industry has its unique array of products, software, and services. When you engage key developers, manufacturers, or service providers, you gain recognition and respect. All you need to do is share your experience with the product and provide your recommendation.

How to do it

Here’s a pattern for the product review:

  • Introduce the product
  • Introduce the producer
  • Describe the product
  • Share what you like
  • Share what you don’t like
  • Provide your recommendation
  • Provide a call to action

Things to keep in mind

If the product is a physical item, you may want to have a video component to the review. A video allows you to take a hands-on approach to the product as you review it.

Content type #8: How-to

The how-to is one of the most popular types of content, especially in my niche. On my blog, I write a lot of how-to guides. How-to articles have awesome long tail search potential due to these popular long tail query introductions: “How to…” and “How do I…?”

How to do it

First, identify a common problem. Then, come up with a solution. The model is simple:

  • Introduce the problem
  • Introduce the solution
  • Discuss each step of the solution
  • Summarize the discussion
  • Provide a conclusion

Things to keep in mind

The options for how-tos are inexhaustible. Think of one topic that reflects something you do on a daily basis. Next, write a how-to article based on that one issue. It could be industry specific or more general: “How to reply to every email in one minute or less” or “How to optimize your robots.txt for search engines.”

The more thorough your explanation is, the better. Diagrams, videos, and pictures can all help enhance the how-to blog.

Content type #9: Lists

Lists have endless appeal. We’re wired to love them. Chance are you’re going to see or read an article today that involves some sort of a list — “5 Security Breaches You Need to Know about,” “17 Ways to Rank Higher in Google in One Month.” Hey, you’re already reading an article with the title “15 Types.”

From the ancient Ten Commandments to modern lists of everything, numbered ideas are as popular as ever. You can’t go wrong with this content type. Even popular magazines use list appeal to sell issues.

How to do it

Pick a topic, then pick a number. You’re halfway to creating a list. A good example of this is this post on 7 ways to increase your rankings without leveraging content marketing.

When you write your list, use this simple format: introduce the topic, list your points, and provide a conclusion.

Things to keep in mind

The more detailed your list is, the better. Long lists are good too.

There’s no magic number for an awesome list. Odd numbers, round numbers, any types of numbers — they all work equally well.

Content type #10: Link pages

A link page is simply a post that provides links to great resources around the web. The great thing about link posts is that they spread link love to other sites, provide your own site with authoritative SEO signals, and assert your thought leadership within your field.

How to do it

A link page, often called a link roundup, is simply a list of links. Write down the title of the article, hyperlink it, and number it. Done.

Things to keep in mind

It’s helpful to add your own blurb or introduction for each link you provide. Although not necessary, it’s a good way to put your own spin on a topic or add a bit of value to the discussion. Besides, if a post is particularly good (or bad), you may want to point this out.


Stephen Hodgkiss
Chief Engineer MarketHive Inc.
markethive

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member

The Customer Centric Model

 

The Customer Centric Model

It has been my agenda for nearly 20 years to reform an industry that is for the most part has been built upon a shifting and unreliable foundation that has always been broken and is heading for total annihilation. If you have attempted to build a business in MLM you will relate to what I am addressing.

For over a decade this vision has grown in urgency and definition to help direct a broken industry towards developing a customer based centered direct sales model.  All of this was originally inspired by a maverick move towards customer acquisition by a company called Trivita. In 2001. I was introduced to this new direction in MLM by the simple statement, “just buy your customers”. I had already been engaged in the MLM industry for nearly 10 years at that time. My first exposure to MLM was in 1992 with the first to market consumer (customer) based ISP, nationwide dial up Internet access for $20 per month.

I have been an entrepreneur my whole adult life and a good portion of my teen years as well, with my first business started at the age of 14. Prior to my exposure to MLM, I was and still am a traditional business entrepreneur. Therefore to say, I found the MLM model of exclusive distribution to and consumption by distributors and only motivated to this action by pursuing profit; alien, illogical and disturbing. Let me explain:

My introduction and very successful sojourn to this day with Trivita helped me discover the stark contrast between the artificial economies of a distributor based sales company in contrast to a customer based sales company.  I studied this comparison for many years and it became painfully clear, the reason traditional MLM fails, regardless of the compensation plan, regardless of the motivational speakers, regardless of the training to sell the “Hope and Dreams” as that is the only way to promote when the products and or services are frankly, always overpriced and usually underwhelmingly ineffective. There are very few exceptions.  So the glaring difference I found in Trivita was the fact that for every distributor I recruited, I averaged 100 customers. Then the fact, I did not have to sell Hope and Dreams and instead, the pitch was just buy customers. The reaction from the potential distributor was always extremely positive and the close rate of a distributor was very high. When you factor in that every distributor usually meant 100 customers, the potential success was superior to anything else like it.

 This was just a company that offered co-op acquisition of the leads and customers Trivita acquired via their infomercials and not much else. Even Trivita’s products lacked true demonstrability and the pricing was not very competitive. The only viable benefit regarding being customer centric was the fact you could just buy customers, that for the most part, only about 20% stayed a viable reorder over the years.

Because of this one aspect with Trivita, I have enjoyed a significant income for over 10 years with little attention, a true residual income. Over the years as a vendor to the MLM industry, occasionally getting involved with a few companies because I was promised they were going to offer customer centric solutions (all deception from short sighted pitch men). None of them ever did and in my opinion, the super majority of MLMs are run by handicapped captains, that understand the game and that being the 3 month rule. They build their businesses to inspire, motivate and separate their new distributors from as much money and contacts they can quickly. They know their business model only attracts distributors seeking some semblance of financial success therefore they lay their snares with grand claims of Hopes and Dreams. I consider it borderline criminal. Now we finally arrive to the meat of this article, that being what is a true Customer Centric direct sales company look like. Being that there really isn’t any yet, we have to go to the imagination and vision that to some part is guided by good business principles and look at some of the true customer centric businesses on the scene today.

Amazon could easily be the epitome of customer centric. 

 

Wow. “Earth’s Most Customer-Centric Company.”

That is big, it’s bold, and it’s risky for a brand to make the promise to fulfill on that 24/7 every week of the year.

Service recovery design pays off

Of course the shopping and purchasing experience on Amazon has been exceptional for years. But what if a customer has a post-purchase problem? A big part of customer experience design is a focus on “service recovery,” or designing and refining the process when something goes wrong for the customer. Beloved brands like Zipcar know this is a critical opportunity for delivering moments of delight.

READ MORE:
http://delight.us/earths-most-customer-centric-company/

It is all about Customer Satisfaction.

Let me repeat that, “IT IS ALL ABOUT CUSTOMER SATISFACTION”!

The latest results from the American Customer Satisfaction Index reveals Amazon.com as the reigning and undisputed champ in both Internet retailing and across the entire department in overall customer satisfaction. Amazon’s CEO, Jeff Bezos perhaps more than any business leader has taken the philosophy of truly caring for the customer and ushered it into the digital era. Bezos has built a company from the ground up purely based off of the unbending, unyielding philosophy of serving the customer across all departments. With a 164 million Amazon customers, few would argue Bezos as the key architect of building an authentic, customer-centric company.

Pointers from the article 7 Customer Service Lessons from Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos
https://www.salesforce.com/blog/2013/06/jeff-bezos-lessons.html

1. Don’t Just Listen to Your Customers, Understand Them
Everyone has to be able to work in a call center.”

2. Serve the Needs of the Customer
“We’re not competitor obsessed, we’re customer obsessed. We start with what the customer needs and we work backwards.”

3. The Empty Chair: The Most Important Person in the Room
“Focusing on the customer makes a company more resilient.”

4. Never Settle for 99%
“We’re not satisfied until it’s 100%.”

5. Respect Today’s Customer
“If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell six friends. If you make customers unhappy on the Internet, they can each tell 6,000.”

6. Strive to Create a Customer-Centric Company
“If we can arrange things in such a way that our interests are aligned with our customers, then in the long term that will work out really well for customers and it will work out really well for Amazon.”

7. Don’t Be Afraid to Apologize
 “We will use the scar tissue from this painful mistake to help make better decisions going forward, ones that match our mission.”

Over the past nearly two decades, Amazon has held a steady pace of positive press due to their industry-altering company and great customer service. However back in 2009, the foundations of the online book mogul were shook when they remotely deleted copies of the books “1984” and “Animal Farm” from users’ Kindles. The incident prompted an outcry of Internet users to see the dark, “Big Brother” side of Amazon – one that Bezos had worked hard to steer clear of. Amazon quickly made an apology with the usual dry and inhuman statement from the press team. But what really turned people back towards Amazon, was an informal and heartfelt apology from Jeff Bezos:

From “MLM” (Network Marketing), to a sustainable Coop Customer based Marketing Platform!
Now the vision for a better kinder direct sale company

I have run MLM companies, built them, serviced them as a vendor and engaged with them as a distributor for more than 20 years. I have touched and serviced and influenced over 100 million associates over this period of time. The following is my agenda to change this industry to service the little guy and gal, offering a real solution to build a middle class sustainable income for everyone, not just millions for the elite few, we know as “leaders” in their respective company.

1.       1. A Viable and Competitive Product

First and foremost, the “company” must offer a viable product and or service that does what it says and better than any of their competitors and better yet, have a product or service that has no legitimate competition. I could go into great detail here about the MLM industry and their underwhelming and over priced products with many making spurious claims to eventually be shut down by the FDA, etc. but I won’t.

2.       2. The Virtual Warehouse

This may be putting cart before the horse. “Inspired by Amazon’s virtual warehousing” for their merchants selling in Amazon, it is time the MLM industry moves forward with a similar solution. Storing your monthly product commitment in your spare bedroom, garages or den has been the standard for decades. With today’s technology and database management abilities, there is no excuse to not move toward a virtual solution for distributors. This can be done in house by the company, or, use Amazon’s virtual warehousing that is available on a global scale.

This one upgrade to this industry will make reselling, shipping and distribution automated and easy for every distributor, regardless of location or available storage abilities. Bottom line is a doubling or greater movement of product.

3.       3. Customer and Lead coop acquisition

This is where the company marketing people run ads, campaigns, etc., driving vertically targeted prospects to an 800 number or website, acquiring quality pre enrolled prospects or customers who have purchased or at most have enrolled into an auto ship. The distributor’s contribution enhances the company’s budget and the “partnership” enhances the customer’s retention. The company also makes available to the distributor mailing lists to their “enrolled leads and customers” to assist in the continued purchases etc. It is a win win situation and is a proven technique as proven by Trivita.

4.       4. Becoming an E Retailer (automated back office shipping)

Now that the distributors have their inventory, products and samples (if applicable), online, in an offsite virtual warehouse, the process to send product or samples becomes effective and easy. As simple as logging into the back office of their respective MLM company, designating the product (pulling from existing inventory and/or auto purchasing additional inventory), quantity, and drop ship address, with a simple click, the product or sample is easily on the way, while the distributor is still talking to their prospective client, prospect or distributor on the phone. This seamless process makes the potential growth of the company and distributor 100 times greater than the typical cumbersome processes today.

5.       5. 800 telemarketing service platform

Today’s technologies not only make this proposed service affordable, but extremely effective. Typically, new distributors are assigned an ID# number. The number resides within the servers database to track sales, commissions, etc. of the distributor. Thus the hardest part is already done for an 800 sales number.  [A little explanation of current tech] 800 number technology software interfaces display the originating number, or forwarded number.  IE: If the distributor develops a radio commercial with a phone number (toll free or not) then forwards that number to the company 800 number, all he or she needs to do is register that number (via the back office) or calling it in. This way the telemarking operators receiving the incoming calls, know who originated the call and the orders are taken and assigned appropriately to the distributor.

It can be as simple as the distributor takes a call from an ad, the prospects decides to buy the product. The distributor can easily 3 way into the 800 platform and assist the sale. It can be as easy as an ad running offering a product with the company main toll free number offering free shipping and handling with the special pin number. It can be very easy to build.

Imagine the projected results with the distributors taking the initiative, no more need for mentors, no more lead for upline leadership, no more need for motivational events, because the motivation is found in the system and the results. Imagine!

6.       6. API (Application Programming Interface). Distributor selling on Amazon, Ebay, Alibaba, etc.

Basically, the MLM company has an API developed that interfaces with Amazon, Ebay, etc for the distributor. This allows the distributor to develop an online store on Ebay, Amazon, Alibaba, etc, driving and supporting the prospects and customers, but the sale interfaces through the company. Thereby the company controls the pricing, collects the money (connected to the distributor) and ships the product. All the collecting, shipping, tracking and commissions paid out is done by the company.

API: In computer programming, an application programming interface (API) is a set of routines, protocols, and tools for building software applications. An API expresses a software component in terms of its operations, inputs, outputs, and underlying types. Basically allows the company to remotely control pricing, merchant collection, shipping and communication via the distributors Ebay, Amazon, etc. account

More about Amazon API:
http://support.getdropstream.com/customer/portal/articles/1233046-configuring-amazon-marketplace-for-third-party-order-fulfillment-

More about Ebay API:
https://go.developer.ebay.com/what-ebay-api

7.       7. Retail Sales Only Sites (Widgets and actuals)

Traditional MLM companies give a distributor a self-replicated web site that is upfront and focused on selling the Hopes and Dreams of the opportunity, the money, the comp plan, the hype and flash of it all, designed to recruit more distributors. This is death to a retail customer.  Very few MLM companies even consider a dedicated self-replicated retail sales only site for their various products.  I have yet to even hear of any companies making a simple widget that allows the distributor to have the retail site hosted via the widget on their own domains, much less the ability to add any customization to it. Below is one of the first and recent MLM retail sites I am aware of. It sells the coffee, offering one off sales or a discount and free shipping with an auto ship order.

More about widgets here:
http://alexmarandon.com/articles/web_widget_jquery/

8.       8.Social Marketing Aps and systems

Marketers, merchants, etc. need a portfolio of tools, to get the message out, to build awareness, to build a sphere of influence and to build a customer and distributor centered loyalty program. Very few people, even entrepreneurs have all the skill sets to achieve this. However, automated marketing, email auto responders, social broadcasters, coop advertising, blogging platforms, materials and videos are necessary tools for the entrepreneur. First these tools are expensive and the various costs ad up quickly. When you do not supply these types of tools in a controlled environment, the message being broadcasted may not meet the criteria of the company nor abide by regulations.  There are solutions and Markethive is one of the best options. http://markethive.com  Markethive supplies all of these tools and more, integrated and easily configured and controlled within the communities vertical structures built for DSA companies like yours. It is called the company Directories and within a company portal in Markethive, your distributors will find all they need; Broadcasting platforms, self-replicating personalized PDF documents,  Coop advertising systems, blogging platforms, email auto responders, everything needed for marketing, in one place.

9.       9. Training and videos

I do not mean motivational speakers and cheer leading. I mean, real world training how to build the businesses. Daily classes offered by competent experienced teachers, so the distributors develop a strong understanding, expanding their customer territory and acquisition and operate like a real business.

Summary;

With the accelerated market place awash in innovation and technology, technology that puts the human element right into the center of the equation, you can understand why you see the MLM industry sluggish and many companies dying on the vine and others falling flat on their faces with their much heralded launches. Entrepreneurs (distributors) that once upon a time, a flashy video, a charming pitch man, and a compelling comp plan, worked to explode the next greatest MLM launch.

Not today.
It is only a matter of time a young bold, innovative entrepreneur launches the first true customer centric MLM similar to the framework I have discussed here. And when they do, the world will quake, the swamps will empty and the first multi trillion MLM enterprise will rise to stand head to toe with the great innovations today like Facebook Google, PayPal etc.

Written by:
Thomas Prendergast
CMO: Markethive

 
 

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member

MarketHive is much more than just a website for business owners.

MarketHive is much more than just a website for business owners.
 
When I was introduced to Tom Prendergast in October 2012, he told me of a vision he had to provide an advanced online marketing platform to help existing and prospective small business owners build their businesses by providing them with free online marketing tools. 
 
I had no real experience of using the internet to market a business but I shared this vision and decided to become a Founder Member in this project. With other Founder Members, some who have much more internet experience than I do, we were able to raise the funds to develop the project. 
We had not even decided on the name MarketHive at that stage. We knew the project would take approximately two to three years, and now this vision is soon to become a reality. 
MarketHive is currently in a soft launch phase to gather a few members to help us test some of the further development stages before a full launch to the public. 
I am proud to be a part of this project and look forward to seeing many more members in MarketHive soon. 
 
You may not want a business of your own. That's OK. Anyone can have a MarketHive account. You can join MarketHive just to check out the best deals in the products and services being offered by other MarketHive members. 
As a MarketHive member, you can even join or create groups and/or forums based around your personal interests.
…and so much more.
 
Membership is entirely free of charge. There is absolutely nothing to lose by joining MarketHive.

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member

Why Become a MarketHive Alpha Founder?

MarketHive will be released to the public very soon. It is currently in a soft launch phase.

During this soft launch phase, there is the opportunity to become a MarketHive Alpha Founder.

What is MarketHive, what is meant by soft launch and what is an Alpha Founder?

MarketHive is a powerful inbound marketing system and worldwide Social Neural Networking community for home based business owners and customers alike. It is also designed to help those seeking an opportunity to start their own business.
Funded with almost $500,000 raised by the original Founder Members, MarketHive has been developed over the last 2 years by Tom Prendergast who has over 25 years internet marketing experience.

MarketHive will offer an extensive range of advanced marketing tools entirely free of charge to every member. Imagine a system that will help people run their existing business, or start a new business, without the worry of how much the marketing tools will cost.

As MarketHive membership grows, its income will come from advertising.
Advertising will be optional. No member will be under any obligation to place any ads.

Do you think a system offering free tools and no obligation to pay for any advertising will attract many members?

The soft launch phase is where the developers and original Founder Members of MarketHive are carrying out some final testing before full release to the public… and also where Alpha Founder positions are being offered to those wishing to share in the future success of MarketHive.

By making a commitment to contribute a one time payment of $1200 to the marketing campaign, each Alpha Founder will receive a lifetime profit share of the MarketHive advertising revenue.

Think about that very carefully. A lifetime profit share for around the same cost of a daily cup of coffee for one year.

You do not need to understand internet marketing to be an Alpha Founder. However, if you do wish to use the potential of MarketHive to build a business, there will be many benefits such as ad credits for life and much more.

There will be a total of 1,000 Alpha Founder positions. Some have already been taken.

If you are interested in becoming an Alpha Founder, or if you need more information, please send an email stating Alpha Founder in the subject line to paulgmercer@gmail.com. 

You can, of course, sign up for your free MarketHive account by going to markethive.com/paulmercer and log in using one of your social networks. The account will be limited to certain functions as MarketHive is still in the soft launch phase.

#markethive

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member

Just What Is A Social Network?

Social networking is the grouping of individuals into specific groups, like small rural communities or a neighbourhood subdivision, if you will.  Even though social networking is possible in person, especially in the workplace, universities, and high schools, it is most popular online. 
 
This is because unlike most high schools, colleges, or workplaces, the internet is filled with hundreds of thousands of individuals who are looking to meet other people, to gather and share first-hand information and experiences about cooking, golfing, gardening, developing friendships professional alliances, finding employment, business-to-business marketing and even groups sharing with us information about baking cookies to the Thrive Movement.  The topics and interests are as varied and rich as the story of our universe. 
 
When it comes to online social networking, websites are commonly used. These websites are known as social sites. Social networking websites function like an online community of internet users. Depending on the website in question, many of these online community members share common interests in hobbies, religion, politics and alternative lifestyles. Once you are granted access to a social networking website you can begin to socialize. This socialization may include reading the profile pages of other members and possibly even contacting them. 
 
The friends that you can make are just one of the many  benefits to social networking online. Another one of those benefits includes diversity because the internet gives individuals from all around the world access to social networking sites. This means that although you are in the United States, you could develop an online friendship with someone in Denmark or India. Not only will you make new friends, but you just might learn a thing or two about new cultures or new languages and learning is always a good thing. 
 
As mentioned, social networking often  involves grouping specific individuals or entities together. While there are a number of social networking websites that focus on particular interests, there are others that do not. The websites without a main focus are often referred to as “traditional” social networking websites and usually have open memberships. This means that anyone can become a member, no matter what their hobbies, beliefs, or views are. However, once you are inside this online community, you can begin to create your own network of friends and eliminate members that do not share common interests or goals. 
 
As I’m sure you’re aware, there are dangers associated with social networking including data theft and viruses, which are on the rise. The most prevalent danger though often involves online predators or individuals who claim to be someone that they are not. Although danger does exist with networking online, it also exists in the real world, too. Just like you’re advised when meeting strangers at clubs and bars, school, or work — you are also advised to proceed with caution online. 
 
By being aware of your cyber-surroundings and who you are chatting to, you should be able to safely enjoy social networking online. It will take many phone conversations to get to know someone, but you really won’t be able to make a clear judgment until you can meet each other in person.  Just use common sense and listen to your inner voice; it will tell you when something doesn’t feel right about the online conversations taking place. 
 
If you’ve updated your Facebook status, posted photos of last night’s party to Flickr for your friends to see or made a business contact through LinkedIn, then you’ve used a social networking site. But what exactly is a social networking site? What are the key attributes that set it apart from other Web sites? How do they allow people to form online communities and share social networking information? 
 
Some of the earliest sites that we would recognize as being similar to today’s social networking sites appeared in the mid 1990s, when the Internet started growing in appeal. These early sites focused on letting users hook up with people they had known in the past, or finding out how they were connected to other site users. 
 
Friendster appeared in 2002 and followed a similar model, but it offered additional features like photo sharing and it quickly became the first of the “big” social networking sites. Since then, however, Friendster has declined in popularity and is no longer one of the top 20 social networking sites in the United States [source: Hitwise]. After Friendster came MySpace and Facebook, along with sites like Bebo, Hi5, Orkut and Yahoo! 360. In addition, dozens of sites catering to very specific regions or tastes have sprung up. Whether you’re interested in books, video games, music or meeting people from Denmark, there’s probably a social networking site for you. 
 
The idea of an online community goes back much farther than the 1990s, however. Very early forms of the Internet were used to foster social networks. The earliest online communities were dial-up bulletin-board systems (BBSes) such as The Well and numerous other regional systems. While these early communities did not have the features users have come to expect of modern social networking sites, they shared the core idea of connecting people with common interests. 
 
Once you are well informed and comfortable with your findings, you can begin your search from hundreds of networking communities to join. This can easily be done by performing a standard internet search. Your search will likely return a number of results, including MySpace, FriendWise, #MarketHive, FriendFinder, Yahoo! 360, Facebook, Orkut, and Classmates.
 
For free Inbound Marketing Tools see my main page at Market Hive
 

Alan Zibluk – Markethive Founding Member