BLOG ARCHIVE FOR: August, 2006

Aug.29
2006

Oh yes we do!

A few blogs this week have reported that Quixtar plans to do some advertising this fall.  Comments to those posts have said that "Quixtar doesn't advertise because that's not our model."

It's true that Quixtar hasn't advertised since its launch in 1999.  But Amway did, with a modest campaign that ended in the late 1990s.  At the beginning of the decade the focus was on the environment, with a series in Time that showcased a relationship with the National Wildlife Federation and a Newsweek series that encouraged schools to develop environmental programs and be rewarded through the "Class Act" environmental competition.  Ads also were featured in Ebony and other pubs.

I recall hearing some of the comments about us not advertising because we invest our money into IBO bonuses rather than massive advertising budgets as well.   This was part of the rationale as we discontinued the Amway campaign to focus our time, attention, and resources around the Quixtar launch.  While we aren't going to be a major advertiser, helping increase awareness and understanding of Quixtar and our products will benefit all IBO businesses.

And one comment to a blog post suggested that our prices would rise or bonuses be cut due to the campaign.  Not true. 

The campaign is big news for Quixtar, which previously didn't advertise, but is minuscule in comparison to companies that invest millions of dollars in ad budgets each year.   The campaign is our way of dipping our toes in the water of advertising again and a way to start building greater awareness of Quixtar and of Nutrilite as our leading product brand. Response from IBOs who have seen the spots at Quixtar Connections or at other events has been very positive as IBOs appreciate the effort to build credibility and awareness for the opportunity and products they offer.  

The campaign is what we hope will be an ongoing effort to help create greater visibility for the Quixtar opportunity brand and our leading product brands — this time Nutrilite, perhaps Artistry in coming years.  Stay tuned — more details and the full schedule will be at quixtar.com in the coming weeks.

Aug.21
2006

Blog again another day

I really meant to post to my blog this weekend to respond to some of the questions in some recent comments. 

I really did.

I took my laptop up north for the weekend, where we were visiting friends footsteps away from Interlochen.  But the sun was warm and the lake welcoming.  Spent more time on Duck Lake than inside.   The laptop spent a restful weekend in its case in the car.   

So I thoroughly enjoyed one of the last summer weekends before school starts and didn't post.

Will do so later this week.

Aug.15
2006

Lost My Lipstick

Took a chance at the airport this morning and tried to board a plane with a tube of Artistry Satine lipstick.  No dice.  Had to leave it in the trash can and go through the day without color.  And, I lost one of my favorite shades — the one our beauty editor says makes just about anyone look fresher and refreshed.

It reminded me of the scene from one of the Batman movies where the Joker appears to have put something toxic in makeup so then television news anchors started appearing without.  It got ugly, as will air travel until lipstick will once again be allowed on board!

Aug.10
2006

Accreditation

I hate it when I post when I really mean to just save a draft for later…but since I posted instead of saved, later is now!

There’s been lots of chatter on blogs and sites about Quixtar’s Professional Development Accreditation program.

Yes, it’s optional, but so is most professional accreditation.  I have a PR accreditation (called the APR) from the Public Relations Society of America.  I could also get an ABC (Accredited Business Communicator) from the International Association of Business Communicators, but that seemed like overkill.  Likewise there are professional accreditations in all sorts of fields from entertainment to meeting planning to financial services.  And of course there’s the Realtor (which is trademarked.)    There are accountants who aren’t CPAs, although a lawyer would be hard-pressed to practice without passing the bar or a doctor to get patients without passing boards.

Two organizations have received accreditation and there are quite a few more that have applied and are going through the process.  We would love for every organization that offers business support materials to go through and receive accreditation.  But accreditation is a measure of leadership in this area and initially we may have a small group of accredited IBOs and organizations.  For some seeking accreditation, change may be required, whether it’s adherence to the IBO Communications Platform or changes to the content of some of their materials.

Some have also questioned why the site looked rushed.  It wasn’t really, as the site had been in the works about six months.  The problem was that there were too many designers involved — one who didn’t understand the look and feel of the program but did know Web design.  The second designed the logo and look and feel of the program but didn’t do Web fonts well.  And a third person, a graphic artist, got involved and tried to put the two together to somewhat mixed results.  I also got some weird explanation about fonts looking different on a Mac.   So the fonts will be fixed and there will be a more consistent look and feel to the site.  But this isn’t a bells and whistles Web site — it’s designed to share information about the program and spotlight the organizations that have achieved accreditation.  The information is all there — the major changes should be additions to the list of accredited IBOs and organizations!

Aug.07
2006

Blogging every day. flossing every day….it’s about quality, not quantity

Someone suggested that one of the execs at Quixtar begin blogging every day…in fact, the suggestion was that he start blogging “10 minutes a day.”  We joked that sound advice might be to floss every day or exercise for 30 minutes every day, but blogging every day?

I’m probably not going to blog every day….to blog just to blog is to talk when you may not have anything to say.  It’s like the people who respond to every e-mail they get, just so others know they’ve opened the e-mail — and at what time.  They’re the folks who say “thanks” to an e-mail at 11 p.m., so everyone else on the e-mail knows that they’re doing e-mail while the rest of those on the list are sleeping, watching TV, doing Sudoku, or I don’t know, living their lives.  Or they wait until Saturday to open the e-mail and respond so they can show the boss they’re working on a weekend.

I’m a big believer that it’s what you do, not how long it takes or when you do it, that matters.  And my team knows that I’m alarmed, not impressed, when I get a midnight e-mail containing a status report.  When I see someone working on a Sunday I wonder what’s up that’s prohibiting them from getting their work done during the week rather than admiring their willingness to be in the office on a weekend.   I’m dazzled by ideas and creative solutions rather than hours logged.  I used to work for someone who had the opposite approach….hours were a measure of commitment and the more the better.

We all have deadlines and projects that require above-and-beyond effort and hours.  But when it’s constant, that tells me there’s a problem that needs to be fixed and that maybe someone needs some help fixing it.  Because quantity, especially in creative work, doesn’t always mean quality.  In blogs, or in creative.

Aug.05
2006

Rushing the seasons

If you've seen the August cover of What You Want, you might think we're rushing things a bit much — the rake and the pile of autumn leaves.


It's to promote our new Nutrilite Clear Guard allergy product.  And the shot was chosen because it's late for gardening (if it isn't happening in your yard by now it's not going to) and no one would get excited about allergy relief allowing you to mow the lawn without sniffles and snuffs.   So I understand why the image was chosen.


And I know that everyone is getting gobs of fall catalogs that have sweaters and blazers and long sleeves and pants and that everyone is turning their attention to back-to-school.  But it's just the first week of August, and I'm a conscientious objector to rushing past summer into fall.


Don't get me wrong..I'm a sweater weather person and fall is my favorite season.  I'd gladly pass up a Caribbean vacation for a week in Ireland or Nova Scotia.  But I'm not ready to say goodbye to summer yet — especially since I just located my box of summer clothes!


So I look at the rake and pile of leaves and think, not now, not yet. Not while the temperatures are hovering around 90 and there's plenty of summer left to be had. 

Aug.01
2006

The heat index in my head

I have a horrible, rotten, summer cold, and a temperature that was the same as the heat index yesterday (103F, for anyone keeping score.)

I’ve committed to blog more frequently but don’t want to do so under the influence of cold medicine, so I’ll post something more substantive later this week.

Until then, I’m staying at home and keeping my germs to myself.