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Jan 4, 2011

Just One (or Two) More RVL-ing Giveaways Before the Official Launch!

Remember this video with MonaVie Senior Vice President Jeff Graham, posted right before the holidays?

During his message, Jeff pulled out two of the first newly packaged RVL tubs, one of which he handed to me after we shot the video. And you know what that mean – giveaway time!

Between now and the official launch of RVL tomorrow, leave a comment here on BlogMV, on Facebook or (re)tweet us on Twitter and you’ll be entered to win the newly packaged and first off the line RVL Nutrition Shake Mix. I’ll even go one step further and have all our executives sign the tub to make it that much more official. I’m always thinking about my peeps. Peeps being YOU!

And maybe we need a second prize…okay, I happen to have one more RVL gift bag, full of all sorts of fun stuff.

So, feel free to comment on your RVL-ing 2011 goals and resolutions, your excitement over the product line, RVL website, the January 5 launch, January 8 Orlando kick off event, the Dallin vs Jeff Challenge or whatever else you feel inspired or RVL-ing!

It is nearly go time so I want to hear some excitement!

Share it!

Shante

MonaVie Chief Blogger

Dec 16, 2010

Attack of the Twitter Hacks and MonaVie

Today you may have heard about a Twitter spam attack that was due to a security breach of the popular media and technology Gawker websites (LifeHacker, Gizmodo, io9, Jezebel, Kotaku and others). Hackers were able to access more than 1 million Gawker user’s email  and password accounts from their servers, and because many users use the same passwords for multiple sites (like Twitter) they were able to access Twitter accounts and start posting spam. The spam sites they are linking to are none other than acai berry diet sites.

While it appears those who are responsible for the attacks are targeting Gawker, the important take away from this spam attack is to change your passwords or make sure you are not using the same logins for online sites as you do for social media sites. So, I would strongly suggest changing your personal social media login names and passwords (go ahead, put it on your "To Do" list)!

The MonaVie Collateral Damage

But for MonaVie, this issue goes even further. The hackers are using spam and are doing so at the expense of the acai berry  because they think of those who market these type of sites are jokes. And why are they a joke? Because these acai sites and those that market them are known for spamming social media sites constantly and buying annoying ads on websites. Look no further than my recent blog post about our social media guide to see a version of this type of spam. Of course the acai diet sites and other companies using the acai berry are not MonaVie, but as the “premier acai blend” MonaVie does not come away unscathed.

Change the Perception

Over the past year we’ve used social media and provided advice on how to communicate effectively and personally using these platforms. Why? Because when we don’t we are no better than the acai sites that spam the social media platforms. So while there’s no way we can control what others not associated with MonaVie can do, MonaVie distributors can decide how they will act online and if they’re going to be a part of the problem or try to CHANGE the perception (notice our most recent blog posts are a great place to start!).

I vote for CHANGE!

Leave a comment if you have ideas or ways to make our online communications more valuable and less spam-like!

[caption id="attachment_1117" align="alignleft" width="0" caption="Michael Jensen, Social Media Promotions Manager"]Michael Jensen, Social Media Promotions Manager[/caption]

Dec 15, 2010

Henry WHO? Establishing Credibility Through Your Personal Brand

Founder and Vice Chairman Henry Marsh was recently interviewed by WHO Radio in Des Moines, Iowa. Listen to the interview by following this link:

Henry Marsh WHO Radio Interview

Though a practiced and polished speaker in his own right, there are some deliberate habits that Henry exemplified so perfectly during this live interview, habits that lend themselves well to talking about any product or opportunity, whether part of a network marketing line up or other business model. Here are a few examples that Social Media Manager Mike Jensen and I picked up on:

1. Henry personally branded himself, building credibility from his experiences, life and accomplishments. Note that his sense of humor and personal style is present from the beginning, demonstrating an ease of nature and authenticity to his message. It’s important to BE YOURSELF, and only you can be your self best. (Go with it, it makes sense in my head.)

Your audience will relate to you as a person before a product or opportunity. Henry sets the stage well by mentioning not only his successes as an Olympic athlete but also mentioning his failures and moments of learning, saying, “The difference comes in life when you allow your failure to be your floor or your ceiling.”

So while sometimes successes might be a bit elusive for another, everyone can relate to failure can they not? And everyone can see the importance of moving forward after failure.

2.  Though an expert in the field of health and nutrition as it pertains to training for the Olympics, Henry still deferred to science and research done on the MonaVie products by the Scientific Advisory Board. He also mentioned the need to steer clear of claims and the willingness to adhere to FTC guidelines. A respect for those guidelines will build credibility quicker than any health claim. Again, you may have this grand experience with the products but believe it or not, sharing that experience may end up being counterproductive in building your credibility. Product experiences are personal and more often than not, elusive and indefinite.

3.  By listening first and allowing the interviewer to draw lines of comparison, Henry was able to tailor his comments and deliver information that met the demand of his audience, in this case fitness and finances, topics everyone can relate to. By the time the MonaVie products were mentioned, Henry had established himself as a credible source, one in which his audience was already invested, thus taking his recommendation as a valued opinion. No selling was done; no one felt sold. Imagine if the interview started off by mentioning MonaVie before establishing his credibility? Know your why and know how you want to finish your conversations or discussions with others. Customize your "why" to your audience, or the people you meet. Such a great approach!

4. Henry mentioned the importance of being significant and grateful; examples in MonaVie being through our sustainable harvesting techniques and the MORE Project. In the same breath, Henry edifies the other founders of MonaVie, mentioning Dallin’s skills that compliment his own, which does well to further cementing his character and credibility.

So, that’s what we got out of the interview. Take a listen for yourself and let us know what you pick up on from our pro Henry Marsh.

Henry Marsh WHO Radio Interview

And for a little help getting to know your brand and/or creating your best brand here are few resources from Forbes and Entrepreneur:

It's All About You. Best Steps to Creating Your Brand

How to Brand Yourself: An Introduction

And after you've read up on brand best practices come back and tell us a little bit about your brand. Until next time...

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Shante sig short.jpg018

Shante

MonaVie Chief Blogger

Nov 23, 2010

5 Relationship Tips I Learned from Dating My Wife

Think about the strongest relationships you have in your life. How did you make them strong?

10 years ago I made the best decision of my life. I got married. Three kids and four moves later, well, she’s still with me!  Time certainly has flown by, but at certain times, my wife and I look back and still reminisce on how we got here. The time has gone by so fast that we forget exactly what it was that made us want to get married. Yes….my rugged good looks were a big part of it, but aside from that, I wanted to see what other characteristics made our relationship strong that could be applied to any relationship. So, here are the 5 things I learned from dating my wife, and how it can be applied to all relationships:

1. No Risk, No Reward. I knew of my wife for a few years before I actually asked her out. She was a knock-out and had the attention of other suitors, and I was not sure if I could compete. In my senior year of college and with the pressure of graduation looming, I asked her out, she (of course) accepted.

Lesson learned: Sometimes we over-analyze situations and think the worst, when in reality, it usually is never as bad as we think. Be confident. Fear is what keeps you from your goals and success.

2. Little things= big things. On our first date I found out one of my friends had also taken my (future) wife out a few times. And once he found out I was in the picture as well, he upped his game and wanted to go steady with her. In other words, I got kicked to the curb. It would have been real easy to be discouraged and wallow in my own misery, (OK I did that) but I knew I still liked her, and wasn’t going give up so easily. So I kept in touch with email from time to time. I also worked close by, and would drop notes and leave them on her windshield to just say hi. A couple of months later, she came to her senses their relationship went south, and there I was!

Lesson learned: The small and simple acts of kindness can make a difference. Offering to help a neighbor with some yard work, helping a new neighbor move in, taking over cookies (I like oatmeal chocolate chip), or just wishing a co-worker a happy birthday, may not seem like much, may not get you some great reward (nor should that be a motive), but says a lot about you.

3. Keep it real. My first date with my wife was a snoozer. I thought I had a decent plan-- dinner and some miniature golf. The dinner at a Chinese restaurant wasn’t very good and it turns out she did the mini-golf thing the night before. Not good. Plan B resulted in going back to her place (the bachelor pad wasn’t presentable) and watching the movie Patch Adams (I know, very romantic). In the midst of all this negativity, I decided to forget all the superficial mumbo jumbo and just talk with her. We had a lot in common, and I even told her that I wanted to ask her out for quite some time. She also said the same thing. (Say what?) So I proposed on the spot…just kidding.

Lesson learned: We work so hard to make the perfect first impression, and follow all the right steps, which is fine…but in the end do they have an idea of who you are?  If I didn’t open up and share anything that night, the date’s a disaster, an alternate universe comes into play, or my kids will have to find a Delorean to go back in time!

4. Speaking of time...It’s about time! – Part of the great thing about dating is that you tend to spend a lot of time together to find out just how compatible you really are, and find out what makes the other tick. Unfortunately for me we started dating just before Christmas, and I was really trying to find a nice gift (no not a wedding ring) that I thought she would like. I finally decided on a stuffed teddy bear that had a pouch. In the pouch I inserted a box that housed a gold necklace I had purchased. Feeling good right? Wrong. Turns out she really liked white gold, hates “gold” gold. Doh!

Lesson learned: She's high maintenance. To really find out about other people you have to spend time with them and get to know the details (See #2). Strong relationships are built on trust, and how can you do that if you never have spent any time getting to know the real person! Find ways to get to know people, face-to-face is still the best. Social media, is a good supplement to face-to-face contact and it allows us to stay in touch and share mutual interests (take a look at your friends profiles and posts, you can learn a lot).

5. At your service! Obviously, when you’re in love, you often do things you maybe don’t do now or before you met. (That’s what I’ve heard) While we were dating she was my one priority, and would find ways to make her day. Often it would include picking her up at school and fixing dinner for her while she studied. It made a huge difference for our relationship (the classes were another story however).

Lesson learned: When we make relationships a priority, it shows we care. Caring is tied to trust. Our families will always be our main priority, but we can make our friends and others a priority, and care about them. Remember, it doesn't have to be a Herculean effort, it can be a moment, an email, a Facebook post, a telephone call or even dropping by to say hello. With so many distractions in our lives, prioritizing and designating time for others is almost a necessity for me, and I'm sure I'm not alone.

All relationships are different, and require our attention in different ways,  of course to have a deep and continual relationship it requires mutual effort and cooperation. I encourage you to think about the strongest relationships you have, and think about what has made them strong? Last year we ran the Attitude of Gratitude post on Blog MV to thank or acknowledge 5-10 individuals every day for the next month. I highly recommend you take the challenge again, make it a priority in your daily schedule and especially during the upcoming holiday season, and see how it can affect your relationships, better yet....how it can affect you! If you send out holiday cards, try to personalize a few, in fact check your list to see if your friends are on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.  Feel free to share tips of how you maintain and build your relationships below, we can all use the tips!

[caption id="attachment_1137" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Social Media Promotions Manager"]Social Media Promotions Manager[/caption]

Nov 15, 2010

Farmville, the Golden Rule & the Real You

For those of you who frequent Facebook, you may have run into, oh…I dunno, about 100,000 Farmville posts in your Facebook feed (btw..there are over 80 million players!). For those not familiar with Farmville, it’s a virtual farming game with animals, crops and all the fixins, that about 10% of all Facebook members play. (BTW…A co-worker here at MonaVie said his Mom is addicted, and she actually sets the alarm to feed the “virtual” animals at 4 a.m., then goes back to sleep—Yikes!). You may have clicked on a Farmville post (you're not off the hook either Mafia Wars!) and even started to play the game, OR...if you’re like me, you were constantly annoyed and had to hide it in your Facebook feed.

The Golden Rule

Since one of my jobs here at MonaVie is monitoring our online presence, every day I see what is being said by you and by others about MonaVie. The good. The bad. The ugly. Almost daily I  think how can we communicate with others online more effectively? Are we essentially showing up in our friend’s feed like a Farmville post, or other spammers? How would I want to be communicated with? I kept coming back to the Golden Rule as an answer to that very question. Before you post on social media channels, have you asked, "Is this how I'd want to be communicated with?"  I asked myself what characteristics do I look for when connecting with someone (and I suggest you make a similar list—do it…do it now!) and quickly wrote down the first things that came to mind (start writing!). My quick initial responses were:

  • Authenticity – someone who is real/honest
  • Trustworthy
  • Interesting
  • Common interests
  • Pleasant, humorous, positive
  • Helpful

The Real You

I recently shared the article “Will the Real You Please Stand Up?” on MonaVie’s Twitter feed and is a rather thought provoking article that questions if we are the same person online, as we are face-to-face? So who are you really? Do people know you as MonaVie, or for the real you? Are you a person or a brand first? After writing that list, I realized, those qualities are ones that I want others to perceive in me! My next question was, so how would others be able to find out that I have these qualities? I realized that to make real connections it’s not going to happen in one post, or even 10, but that it takes time, and am I patient enough to get there? Are you? Comment below and let us know how you connect with others!

[caption id="attachment_1138" align="alignleft" width="201" caption="Michael Jensen, Social Media Promotions Manager"][/caption]

Nov 1, 2010

MonaVie’s Guide to Social Media – Have you read it?

A few weeks ago while on Facebook, I found a link to one of my favorite social media books and authors, Chris Brogan and Julien Smith (BTW…I highly recommend their book Trust Agents, and following them on Twitter @chrisbrogan and @julien).  To my disappointment,  the first post on the Facebook site was a spammed post for an acai weight loss product.  Now while the authors admittedly don’t monitor this page regularly and allow anyone to comment, the irony of the situation is what really caught my attention.  For anyone who has read their book, or their blogs, would know that they preach the importance of establishing trust for business purposes using “non-sales-oriented” tactics that result in creating deeper personal connections. How ironic was it to see a spammed message, from none other than an acai product? (Seriously…who ordered some of that product?)

It’s “Social” Media, not “Selling” Media

Obviously, such products and their “marketing” have tarnished the MonaVie “crown-jewel” a bit, and it is our hope and desire to make sure MonaVie does not perpetuate such behavior. For that reason, we have made a conscious effort to make sure the MonaVie Facebook page, Twitter page and BlogMV is not a spamming free-for all, but rather a platform for us to communicate with one another, interact with all of you great distributors and provide value. It is also our hope that our distributors will reciprocate that behavior in your own online communications. One of the greatest analogies I heard discussed when approaching social media, was to pretend you were invited to a social gathering. Your friends, co-workers and family are all there. Just before everyone sits down to eat, someone grabs the microphone asking everyone at the event if they want to buy some juice? What do you think the reaction would be?  Yet, some are approaching social media platforms when posting status updates with similar statements, simply because it’s easy, hoping just one person randomly has interest.

So what's in the Guide to Social Media?

Last week we announced the release of MonaVie’s Guide to Social Media on MonaVie on the Move and made it available in the distributors’ Virtual Office Document Library and on BlogMV (look to your right…now back at this blog post). It is our hope that you will all download and read the document, hug it and hold it close, never letting it go. Within the document are items we feel are important for you to know, and find valuable as you maintain an online presence such as:

  • An introduction to social media and social media platforms MonaVie is currently using (Facebook, Twitter, Youtube).
  • MonaVie’s 9 Rules of Social Media Engagement (social media etiquette).
  • 5 Tips Every MonaVie Distributor Needs to Know about the New FTC Guidelines – which provides important details on testimonials and endorsements that all distributors need to know.
  • In the future, we will update this document as needed. We hope you will use this document and remember its content as you proceed to post anything online that is MonaVie related and to also inform your fellow distributors as well. If there are any questions, comment below or feel free to contact Shante (shantes@monavie.com) or myself, Michael Jensen (michael.jensen@monavie.com).

    Can’t wait to talk WITH you (not at you)-- at the party!

    MJensen

    Michael Jensen

    Social Media Promotions Manager

    Oct 26, 2010

    Beginning a More Meaningful Life with RVL!

    Dear MonaVie Family,

    When I was in the 9th grade, I wrestled at 98 pounds. When I graduated from High School in 1977, I weighed roughly 135 pounds. Since that time, my weight has continued going up each and every year it seems. At my peak, I weighed 220 pounds! Sometimes it’s not until you see a picture of yourself that you realize how much you’ve changed. I used to own weight loss franchises so I’ve been around weight loss programs for years and years; but, that still didn’t seem to help me. The older I’m getting, it just seems as though it’s harder for me to muster up the courage and energy to start another attempt at getting more fit.

    My motivation for losing some weight (but more importantly, getting more healthy), is so that I can hopefully remain more active over the next 20-plus years in order to enjoy, with Karree, being involved in Boo and Dane’s youth. They are now 5 and 6 years old and I don’t want to be an old man when my two youngest reach teenage years. I need to be able to still frighten my girl’s boyfriends! :)

    In September, we were all reminded how precious life is and how it can be taken from us at any moment. The week I returned from giving the eulogy at Darrell Utterbach’s funeral, I decided that it was time to take more personal time on improving my health and make it a higher priority.

    I’ve tried doing this before and I generally get burned out after a few weeks, so I really need to be incredibly disciplined. As you all know, I travel a lot and I’ve made that an excuse for years and years as to why I just can’t get in very good shape. I’m not going to use that as an excuse anymore. I’ve now decided that at 51 years of age, I deserve to invest in myself and in my health instead of giving it away all the time.

    With that, here are my goals, and I hope you’ll set some goals of your own:

    Starting Weight: 198 pounds
    Goal weight: 169 pounds.
    (I haven’t weighed that little since I was probably 27 years old.)

    I want to get on a scale on January 5, as we introduce RVL, and weigh in at 169 pounds. To do this, I’ll have to be disciplined through Halloween, Thanksgiving, and the Christmas holidays! This will be an enormously tough test for me, as I love to eat good food and I love chocolate. In addition to following my RVL program, my goal is to run or walk 20 miles each week.

    Part of living a more meaningful life is having a healthy mind and body to experience life so richly. I know that if I can do it, you can too! Let’s make MonaVie the healthiest AND best company FOR the world! I’m doing this as a gift to my wife, to myself, and to my kids. Hopefully, that will be enough motivation to keep me going and turn away from the Snickers at Halloween. No problem, I’ll just reach for another MonaVie Chocolate Bar! Seriously, they’re insanely good.

    Let’s all get healthy together!

    dallin_a_larsen_signature

    Dallin A. Larsen,
    Founder, Chairman, and CEO, MonaVie

    PS. To follow Dallin and Jeff's progress click here.

    Oct 20, 2010

    A RVL-ing Interview with MonaVie's Jeff Graham and Bernie Landes

    MonaVie Senior VP Jeff Graham sits down with Bernie Landes to discuss the science behind MonaVie's newest product! Let us know what you think and if you're excited?

    [caption id="attachment_1102" align="aligncenter" width="184" caption="Michael Jensen"]Michael Jensen[/caption]

    Social Media Promotions Manager

    Oct 18, 2010

    Tulsa Distribution Center: Filling More Than Orders

    Sent in by Pam Jenkins, who had not one but two examples of the dedicated and kind staff working our Tulsa Distribution Center.

    In her words:

    I called Courtland one evening, and on his day off no less, because a distributor on our team was trying to make her way through all of the construction and it would be past 6:00 when she arrived. Courtand said to tell her to keep going and he would make a call and make sure someone was at the distribution center. Then he said, “No, just tell her someone will be there, if I have to go in myself.” That was so nice and Billie rewarded them all with a cheesecake that she had made at the bakery that she works.

    My second story happened last summer. My business partner, Brett Gould, wanted to fly his grandkids in for a couple of weeks, but without one of their parents coming with them, he didn't know how he could care for them since he also owns his own plumbing business. Brett usually only gets to see the kids once a year because they live in Spokane, WA so we put our heads together and me and my husband, Randy, said that they could stay at our house. The two-week journey turned in to a 6-week stay and later Brett’s grandkids were joined by my two grandkids making for one full, and active, house.

    One day, I went to pick up an order at the Tulsa Distribution Center and they all asked where I had been.  Alex said, “Hey, I wouldn't mind giving you a break on my day off. Here is my number, text me on Monday and we will make plans for Tuesday.”

    What a relief as I definitely needed the break. True to his words, Alex loaded up six kids in the car and headed to the movies, followed by ice cream at Baskin Robbins.

    Just another example of MonaVie friends and family going above and beyond to help others. Thank you Courtland and Alex for your dedication, and of course to Pam and her husband Randy for opening their home and then passing the goodness to me here at MonaVie HQ so I can share it with the rest of you!

    Share it!

    Shante sig short.jpg018

    Shante
    MonaVie Chief Blogger

    Oct 8, 2010

    MonaVie Star 1000 on CBC Battle of the Blades

    November 17, 2010 UPDATE: Todd and skating partner Isabelle made it to the final show, which airs Sunday, November 21 at 8 pm EST on CBC. If you have access, be sure to tune in, cast your vote and help this MonaVie-er take home the gold! Voting details here.

    His name is Todd Warriner and as a retired NHL player, sporting both the Toronto Maple Leafs and Vancouver Canucks jersey during his 10-season career, what a better way to raise money for The Heart and Stroke Foundation than to battle it out on the CBC show Battle of the Blades.

    He is also an Olympic silver medalist and a MonaVie Star 1000 according to Ruby Executive Kyle Mitchell who sent in the following:

    It would mean so much to Todd and our MonaVie team if we could get everyone in MonaVie Canada behind him and help him try and win the show.

    Read more about Todd on the CBC site here. He successfully made it to week two, but his fate moving forward is in the hands of his viewing audience. The next episode airs this Sunday, October 10, 8 p.m. EST.

    If you can, give him your vote during or after the show on Sunday and help him through to the finals!

    Keep sharing it!


     

    Shante

    MonaVie Chief Blogger

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