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Apr 21, 2011

!magine “Social Media and YOU” Breakout & Giveaway Opportunity

How excited are you for all the amazing happenings soon to be happening at this year’s MonaVie !magine Convention in Salt Lake City, June 9-11?

Please note the coolness of keynote speakers Chris Gardner and Paul Zane Pilzer, as well as, live entertainment with Club Fedora and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, which may or may not be one of my nicknames.

Another great addition to this year’s convention will be breakout sessions, including one entitled “Social Media and YOU.”

So, in an effort to cover the YOU part, we are asking for input as to what you would like to learn related to all things social media. We will then create content from your questions and hopefully make the most of your !magine Convention experience.

And I managed to get a hold of a few fun prizes to incentive question sending – those of you who offer a question that is picked and ultimately helps build the content for the “Social Media and YOU” breakout will receive a little somethin’.

Now you’re most likely wondering, what said somethin' will be...

Well, it’s a secret…okay, I’ll give you a visual hint in the form of a MonaVie super silver goody bag image:

Inside each bag is a collection of kind of awesome items. If you want to be entered to be a recipient of one of these goodie bags then by all means, send us your “Social Media and YOU” breakout question. And make it good.

When it comes to social media, what is it you are most longing to learn?

Please leave your question in the comments below, or email me at shantes@monavie.com. This poll and giveaway opportunity will close on April 26 at midnight MST – winners will be announced after we careful examine all questions and pick the winners.

Share it!


 

Shante

MonaVie Chief Blogger

NOTE: This giveaway opportunity is officially closed. Thank you for all your questions. We'll be combing over them and selecting as many as possible to answer during the !magine "Social Media and YOU" breakout session.

Mar 18, 2011

7 Steps to Creating Your Personal Social Media Strategy

One of the best ways to stop the perpetuation of spaghetti throwing is to have a plan in place for using social media. Very few people actually sit down and think about how they want to communicate or better yet, how they want to be communicated with. And that’s the problem. We should THINK! Social media should not be looked at as a magic bullet that will suddenly make you rich or bring in tons of leads. Too many people in direct marketing think social media platforms are a giant sea of prospects that they can cast their nets into and get immediate rewards. If your view is similar to this then you most likely will not look at people as “people” or relationships, but more like a number or leads. In my opinion…this is a dangerous approach.

This is not to say that spaghetti chucking from time to time might bring some success, it might...but there might be other factors at work that influenced your success like timing, the type of trust you've already built up with certain friends, a strong personal brand already, your friends like the MonaVie brand, etc. The problem with this type of strategy is that the modest success from chucking spaghetti only perpetuates continuous chucking behavior. Most don't realize they're chucking spaghetti until it's too late. When spaghetti chucking is no longer working, many friends are turned off from your constant "selling" approach, and now you're left starting over and frustrated because all people know about you is that you're always trying to sell something. Is it worth chucking spaghetti to get a few people signed up while alienating or turning off 90-95% of your friends or family? I think most will agree, those who are successful in network marketing are also good about establishing relationships. No relationship is the same and no relationship is built overnight…although many of us treat our contacts on social media platforms like we don’t know them or are highly impersonal. In this post we’ll talk about steps you can take to formulate your social media strategy and subsequent blog posts will look at tactical ways to execute your social media strategy.

So the following are steps you can take to perform a personal audit of your personal social media brand so you can start formulating a social media strategy. This is about YOU…as a person…not a company or brand.

1. Purpose, Goals & Commitment. In social media there is a lot of experimenting that can be done tactically, however, having a sense of purpose, some goals and committing yourself to doing it is important if you want to get the most out of social media. One of the basic purposes I’ve found within social media is creating new relationships and enriching current relationships. My own personal views shape my purpose, but to me a big part of life is about the relationships we make. With this purpose in mind I’ve been able to look at social media as a great way to fulfill this purpose and create goals that have now become natural to me. So with that overarching goal (of creating X amount of connections) I can start looking at tactical goals that may include number of posts per day, the type of posts per day/week, wishing every friend a Happy Birthday, retweeting friends posts, 10 compliments per day using social media, reconnecting with 1 person a week, etc. Before social media came along, I was more guarded and comfortable in just having my own little clique of friends. There’s nothing wrong with that, but if you’re in network marketing that’s no way to make friends! So write your purpose down, write a your goals to get there and then commit to doing it daily, weekly, monthly, yearly and before you know it the goals come naturally.

2. Know Thyself. What do YOU want people to know about YOU? Think of the characteristics you have and the ones you want to have. Are you funny, interesting, trustworthy, knowledgeable, adventurous, genuine, etc.? Now look at the information in your profiles and see if these characteristics are coming through in what you post, in pictures and videos, etc.  Don’t look through business glasses when making your profile…look through the glasses of who you think you are, or want to become.  If there are pictures, or videos that don’t match your personal brand, you may want to remove them. Social media makes it easy to chuck spaghetti...but the positive is that  it also is easy to make a first impression, so don't think that just because you don't look at your profile, others don't--they do and will especially if they are going to invest time or get involved in a business!

3. Put Yourself In Your Profile and Posts. If you are on Facebook or Twitter, go to your profile and look at your most recent posts (20).  Not replies or comments on your friends’ posts, but your own posts or tweets. Classify the posts as funny, interesting, quotes (inspirational), business related, informative, sports, personal, or other. Now look at those posts and see which posts are getting the most reactions from your friends/followers? Look at the results. Are they positive/negative? Are they one-sided? What do they say about you? To take it a step further, have a close friend who is also on your social media platforms to give you an opinion of how you are perceived online, it could be eye-opening. BTW…explaining that you’re a MonaVie distributor within your profile is fine and is part of being authentic…but are most of your pictures of MonaVie drinks and events? Are the bulk of your posts MonaVie or business related? If so…that’s probably spaghetti chucking. Keep your results and then compare after you start your new strategy. I would also look at your friends’ posts and noticing which posts you like, which friends are engaging and why?

4. Target and know your audience. This can also summed up with one word—listening. People generally like information and content that is interesting, funny or unique to them or their situation. Look at how people post information about their businesses and themselves. We touched on this in a previous BlogMV post about the Golden Rule and you will need to decide whether the content you post is something that can apply to everyone or to only a select few. Our next blog posts will address how to target your audience, but a good idea might be to separate your friends/followers into groups or lists. Which ones are most engaging? Which do you know better? Which are most influential? Which are customers? Once you have an idea of who your friends are, you can start being more strategic with the way you reach out to them, instead of everyone. (more to come here folks!)

5. Diversify and limit yourself! No this isn’t mutual funds, but the principle still applies. Be genuine, be human, be funny (not crude), be informative, most importantly BE YOU first! After looking at the results of posts to your social media platforms, you will have an idea of what content is engaging, who is responding to YOU, and what is not working.  Take into effect how much you post and the time of day. Studies have shown over-posting turns people off. So if your sending out mass Tweets to a bunch of people at one time promoting your business, don’t be surprised to see your follower count decrease. If you're posting more than four times a day on Facebook (and if they're Farmville posts!) you might have friends hide you or de-friend you. Timing can be critical and typically more people are online in the evening, and many check their social media streams first thing in the morning. So diversify the types of posts (if necessary) and the timing.

6. Remember the 3 Bs. Be generous. Be giving. Be authentic. There’s probably a few other B’s I could write…but let’s start here. Limiting your posts, does not mean you have to limit your ability to be human. Remember, friends and followers are sharing something with you and others using social media. This is an opportunity to respond and engage with generosity, empathy, humor or whatever the occasion calls for. This is most likely, NOT a chance to hit up people for business, to offend or argue. Remember, we’re building relationships (the marathon) and when people know and trust you, introducing a business opportunity will not be a major obstacle nor as stressful had there been no relationship in place. So compliment others on their accomplishments. Add words of encouragement. Be empathetic when others are struggling. Go to lunch with a new friend once a week . Invite a neighbor and family over for dinner. Get involved with your community. If you have kids, get involved with your kids PTA or activities. Volunteer your time for a cause. It's amazing how many friends and connections you will make when you get out (of your comfort zone and house) and do something. When you make face-to-face connections don't forget to follow up and invite them to connect on your social media accounts!! And do it because it’s the right thing to do and you want to…not because you have some hidden motive.

7. Work at it! My parents taught me, if something is worth doing, it's worth doing well. Cliche as it sounds...I believe it. Relationships are not a get rich quick scheme, they require effort, they require giving and nurturing. And the results you put into relationships, will come and if you’re only looking at people as numbers then you’re missing the point. You’re results should be looked at in terms of connections. Work on enriching your relationships using social media (because that’s the real beauty of social media) and your business goals will follow. There is evidence all over the Internet and in social media of little strategy and effort.

Our next blog posts will focus on ways to use content strategically and also ways to target your audience more effectively. I invite you to leave a comment and let us know about your personal brand and effective strategies you may have used to use express your personal brand using social media.

[caption id="attachment_1102" align="alignleft" width="272" caption="Michael Jensen, MonaVie Social Media Promotions Manager"][/caption]

Mar 7, 2011

MonaVie Distributor Focus: Carol and Dale Funk from Hillsboro, Oregon

[caption id="attachment_12995" align="alignnone" width="339" caption="Samantha and Shadar, adopted by the Funks, pulling their RVL weight"][/caption]

Tell us about you and the photo above...
My husband, Dale is a respiratory therapist at a hospital. I am a cancer registrar at a different hospital. He works graveyard and I work days, so needless to say, we hardly see each other.

We both volunteer at our local Hillsboro shelter, taking pictures of the dogs and cats and posting them on a pet finder site to try to help them get adopted.

Both of our dogs are adopted from shelters. The red one is Samantha and she was 2 1/2 years old when we got her. She is part Australian cattle dog and part Stafford terrier. She was sick when we adopted her and she literally put her two paws around my neck and hugged me the whole way home. Our veterinarian later confirmed my suspicions, that her troubled breathing was due to pneumonia, present in both her lungs. We almost lost her, but the vet just kept trying. She was in the hospital and we would visit daily and tell her we loved her. Our vet fell in love with her too and would come in at night to check on her. She came home after three days and three months and three different antibiotics later she made a full recovery.

The other dog, Shadar, is a long-haired black German Shepherd, retriever and Border Collie mix. He came into the local shelter when he was 3-4 months old after his previous owners had moved, leaving him on their neighbor’s front porch. He decided he was coming home with me that day, so we did a meet and greet and he became part of our family right away. He is quite a momma's boy.

Both Samantha and Shadar love the beach, lake and park. The day this photo was taken they were pulling the kids at the park on a sled. We thought it would be fun to have them pull the RVL product too and promote health and wellbeing.

What is your “why”?
My husband and I love the Oregon beach and would love to have a vacation home facing the ocean. We would also like a place in the country that is solar powered and have lots of green houses. I love to cook with fresh herbs and vegetables and would love them year round. My husband and I both presently work at different hospitals, different shifts and rarely get time together; one of us is leaving as the other gets home from work. We have two grown boys in college. My dream would be to spend time with future grandkids any time I want. We also would love to travel.

What is your favorite moment with MonaVie?
The release of RVL. Prior to a hysterectomy at age 41 I never had a weight problem. However, since the surgery my weight has been a continuous struggle and at one point I highly considered going on an expensive program that zeroed in on hormone imbalance, but after a friend had spent over $2,000 in two months and still had not lost all the weight, I realized the program was simply too expensive. Diabetes runs in my family so getting and keeping the weight off was a must for my long-term health.

I started RVL on November 12, 2010. I have dropped two clothing sizes and 20 pounds and have 12 more pounds to go to reach my goal weight. My husband, who has also struggled with weight, has lost over 29 pounds now.

I also have to mention the EMV. I drive 40 miles to work on three different, very busy, congested freeways. I work four 10-hour days, getting up at 3:30 am, leaving the house between 4:30-4:45 am and starting work at 6 am. At the end of my day I leave work at 4:30 pm and get home between 6pm and 7pm, depending on traffic. I don't leave home without first drinking a can of EMV and then I will typically drink another one in the early afternoon.

Share your best business building tip
At this point we are sharing our story. We first got in for the products but we are starting to get our group to meet weekly, so we can help each other grow because we all want to not have traditional jobs anymore.

Where to from here? Goals, aspirations, plans...
Our goal at this point is to build to Royal Black Diamond. In any case, we are definitely hooked on all the products. Short-term goal is to make enough money to pay for more MonaVie products!

One of my husband's dreams is to build our MonaVie business big enough to be able to purchase a lot of acreage in the country and open up a big animal rescue with trainers and offer rehabilitation services for dogs.

Mar 1, 2011

Why We Should Stop Throwing Spaghetti Against the Wall

[caption id="attachment_12810" align="alignleft" width="250" caption="The cure for throwing spaghetti? Using your noodle!"][/caption]

Spaghetti throwing, we’ve all done it. OK, maybe not actual spaghetti throwing, but figuratively speaking most of us are guilty, especially when it comes to social media, email or marketing a business in general. So what do I mean when I say spaghetti throwing?

Good question.

You might be a spaghetti thrower if you:

  • Send out mass emails/posts/tweets to people you know (and most likely many you don’t know) about a “great opportunity”
  • When business posts outnumber personal posts -- remember social media is SOCIAL!
  • Link to a “great product” or video on your Facebook/Twitter page with the last line mentioning “if anyone’s interested let me know”
  • Using auto-feeds of MonaVie or other types of content and flooding your social media streams without interacting
  • Cook spaghetti and throw it (this goes without saying)

The Shotgun/Spaghetti Approach vs.  A Strategic Approach

A couple of years ago I was laid off from my job, (a harrowing event in my life, but not unexpected working in the real estate industry in Southern California). With a wife and two kids, this life changing event was one I was not prepared for (who is?) and the job search market was a completely new frontier. One of the first job opportunities I looked into was a great position, with a great company. Before applying for the position, I decided to call the hiring manager about the position. After a few ninja moves and creative negotiations I was transferred to her. She informed me that she had received over 300 resumes to go through and that there were many qualified applicants. My heart sank. I soon figured out, simply updating my resume and posting it to online job sites (which I have done before) was not going to be enough to get interviews, and not only that, the competition for jobs was fierce.  (Cue the self doubt!)

How was I going to stand out?

How am I going to differentiate myself from the competition? (sound familiar?)

I decided to dig in. I read tons of articles. I spoke with an outplacement agency. I delved into LinkedIn (a great resource BTW) and I revamped my resume to try to truly stand out. For job postings I wanted to apply for, I researched the company, the products, and would customize my resume to fit the job position. I would also customize a cover letter as well. The process was slow, and at times I would apply for up to 2-4 positions maximum a day. But a strange thing happened... I started getting interviews. In fact the job I originally inquired about later called me back for multiple interviews (they ended up offering the job to an internal candidate who “changed their mind”—but stay with me here there’s a point coming!).

During this time a colleague of mine, let's call him Chuck (short for spaghetti chucker), who was also unemployed, spoke to me about how his job search was going. His frustration was evident.

“I’ve sent out thousands of resumes and have not received a single interview,” he said.

It was clear…Chuck was clearly throwing spaghetti on the wall hoping it stuck using the age old argument of quantity over quality--you know the same methods of cold-callers. And he really thought he was doing his best, with an “at least I tried” kind of mindset.

The point!

Many who are trying to generate interest in their business "Chuck" out links, offers and other content and hope someone calls us or is interested in some way, or even just comments. But are we really looking to connect with others or are we simply taking the easy way out? Sending out links, emails, Facebook posts, Tweets on any content is easy. Sure it took you some time to post, maybe come up with a little headline, etc. However, do you have someone in mind when you post or do you have everyone in mind? Customizing a message, or telling your story to one person or even a group of people takes time and effort.

Most of the time it is simply not enough to just blast content out to the masses because you think you’re spreading a message to everyone hoping to find someone…when in fact you are connecting with no one, and possibly chasing them away (and damaging your reputation/as well as MonaVie’s in the process).

Over the next weeks we’ll post some ways to :

  • Have a social media strategy for YOU
  • Find quality content
  • Tell a story using content
  • Tell YOUR story using social media and other tools

We also invite you to leave your comments here or on MonaVie on Facebook or  MonaVie on Twitter on what has worked for you and your business.

[caption id="attachment_1138" align="alignleft" width="199" caption="Michael Jensen, MonaVie Social Media Promotions Manager"][/caption]

Feb 23, 2011

A Letter From Dallin: The Aftermath of an Earthquake

Dear MonaVie Family,

I’m sure that you’ve been made aware of the horrific earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, that has taken the lives of 65 people from the last count I’ve seen.  To our MonaVie family in New Zealand, we want you to know that we love you and are praying for you every day.  As one who has traveled on numerous occasions to Christchurch, as well as throughout the whole of New Zealand, my heart aches for your loss.  Both Karree and I, along with the entire MonaVie family, send you our deepest condolences and will continue lifting you up in our thoughts and prayers over the coming days and weeks. Finally, as devastating as this is, I must say that the kiwi’s are as resilient a people as I’ve ever met anywhere in the world.  They will, once again, rise up and not allow this tragedy to permanently cripple their great country and their personal resolve.  I love and admire the winning spirit that is New Zealand.

With deepest affection and sympathy,

Dallin and Karree Larsen

Feb 22, 2011

MonaVie RVL Exercise Ball Giveaway!

I hope all those who celebrated President's Day enjoyed the long weekend. But now - get back to work!

To soften the work-week angst, I present you with another giveaway opportunity. Leave me a comment here on BlogMV, Facebook or by (re)Tweeting us on Twitter and you'll be entered to win one (1) MonaVie RVL exercise ball.

Trust me, that's the exercise ball, as it will be shipped to one lucky winner. I'll let you do the hard work of blowing it up. Okay, I'll throw in an air pump, but that's my final offer!

Share it!

Shante

MonaVie Chief Blogger

Update: We have our winner. Congratulations to Billinda Richey who left us the following comment, "Michigan is Rockin' the MonaVie and RVL..." Billinda, please send your distributor number and mailing address to shantes@monavie.com and we'll get that exercise ball put in the mail. Stay tuned for more giveaways!

Feb 11, 2011

MonaVie RVL Collared Shirt Giveaway!

I was handed this gem of a shirt by Senior Vice President Jeff Graham himself. He said he had a few MonaVie RVL shirts, specifically created for him and other traveling corporate to wear while on tour, and wanted to share the love, offering this one from his personal stash as a giveaway!

MonaVie RVL men's XL shirt

It hasn't been worn by Jeff, though I'm not sure if that is a plus or a minus. Whoever wins may want to know this shirt has been close to Jeff's infamous abdominal muscles. I am sure we can facilitate that request.

It is a men's XL but ladies, do not be shy about entering. Leave me a comment here on BlogMV, on Facebook or by tweeting or retweeting us on Twitter and you'll be entered. We're keeping this giveaway open all weekend and will pick and post a winner first thing Monday morning.

So, to recap, enter to win 1 men's XL collared shirt (with embroidered MonaVie RVL on the left chest and left folded cuff - oh fancy!) by leaving us a comment on any of our social media platforms...and we'll reconvene on Monday.

Enjoy the weekend!

Share it!

Shante

MonaVie Chief Blogger

UPDATE: And our winner to the glorious giveaway, chosen at random using Random.org is...wait for it...Kandace Batz, who left the following comment, "Shante….we love your contests!! Don’t forget us Canadians up here, could use a long sleeve. :)"

Well Kandace, we shall not forget our neighbors to the north! Please send me your distributor number and mailing address (shantes@monavie.com) and I'll get your shirt to the post (office), posthaste.

Jan 31, 2011

Change Lives, Including Your Own - Join the MORE Project March Expedition

Space is limited and time even more so, but if you want an opportunity to act on MonaVie's newest key message "A MORE meaningful life," then make sure you're part of the MORE Project March 20-27 service expedition. Spend a week at Village MonaVie and take in the programs and other life-changing offerings. Visit the Believers Project, a school offering a well-rounded education to the children of the favelas; the Mom's House, where children in otherwise high-risk situations live and receive love, attention and support; the Professional School, where teenagers and adults are offered the vocational training necessary to find employment and free themselves and their families from poverty.

Each expedition group completes a service project, including, but certainly not limited to, construction work, cleaning, general labor duties and helping out in and around the various schools - wherever the need is greatest. Life changing experiences are had by all, including those who's lives are supported, in every sense of the word, by the MORE Project.

Deadline for the March expedition is February 5. To apply, to this:

1.  Complete the MORE Project Expedition Application

2.  Make a Deposit

Be sure to specify your preferred 2011 expedition:

March 20-27

May 8-15

September 25-October 2

July 23-August 1 (Youth Expedition, ages 14-18)

Cost is $2,750 per person ($3,000 for the Youth Expedition) with a $250 deposit. Children 12 years and up are welcome when accompanied by a parent.

(2010 VIP MORE Project Expedition, photos by CFO Devin Thorpe)

I'm filling out my application now for the March expedition. Anyone care to join me in changing lives?

Share it!

Shante
MonaVie Chief Blogger

Jan 28, 2011

MonaVie RVL Shaker Giveaway Winners

Well, we managed to nab ourselves two more shaker bottles, and by "nab" I mean shake them from Scott Anderson's unsuspecting hands. All for you!

[caption id="attachment_11647" align="alignnone" width="244" caption="Two little shaker bottles...looking slightly lonely."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_11647" align="alignnone" width="244" caption="Oh hey there, two more just waiting to be snatched."][/caption]

Behold, the now FOUR lucky winners, who were chosen at random, from last week's giveaway:

MonaVie Squamish - Natasza Pawlikowska (via Twitter)

Anne Dyer (via Facebook)

Kris Schumacher Geeting (via Facebook)

Sharon Jones (via BlogMV)

As always, please send your mailing addresses to shantes@monavie.com or michael.jensen@monavie.com and we’ll make sure it gets mailed out next week.

Thank you to all who commented and stay tuned on our FacebookTwitter and BlogMV for more information and more giveaways!

Jan 20, 2011

Win and Provide a Home for a MonaVie RVL Shaker

It's been an exciting beginning to the New Year and guess what? It only gets better! Here at MonaVie we like to "shake" things up a bit, just as we're doing right now in the weight management industry with RVL.

[caption id="attachment_11647" align="alignleft" width="301" caption="Here the MonaVie RVL Shakers "hang" at my desk--staring at me."][/caption]

MonaVie receptionist Cristina wanted to take them home too!

Speaking of which, we want to give all of YOU the chance to "shake" things up as well. We have two MonaVie RVL Shakers that desperately need to find a good home and will provide years of RVL shake-goodness!

To enter to win a MonaVie Shaker leave a comment here on BlogMV, on Facebook or (re)tweet us on Twitter by 5:00 PM PST tomorrow (January 21st) and you’ll be entered to win. Two winners will be selected.

[caption id="attachment_11648" align="alignleft" width="301" caption="Here the MonaVie RVL Shakers enjoy the embience of the MonaVie lobby. They're obviously bored and unfulfilled. "][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_11649" align="alignleft" width="301" caption="MonaVie Shakers "Chill" at MonaVie Cafe"][/caption]

Specifically, we here at MonaVie HQ want to know how YOU will be able to provide a good home for the shaker? Is there anything you add to your RVL shake?  Will you be committed to drinking and using your RVL shaker? Will your RVL Shaker help you or others lose weight or simply collect dust in your cupboard next to your favorite 32 oz insulated mug? We want to know!

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