Posts Tagged ‘work for yourself’

Money? Yes, Please!

I spent time on Sunday talking with a gal I know about the Shaklee opportunity. Her husband is out of work at the moment and she owns her own business so cash is very tight. Her husband takes care of their baby while she works, but he’s going out of his mind since he’s not contributing income to their household. They really want to supplement their income so I went through line by line how you make money building a Shaklee group and wanted to share with you as after I had written it down, I felt like other people might be interested in seeing the process – it’s from an email I sent to her so if some of the examples don’t make sense I apologize in advance!

 – Here’s how the earning potential works. You go out and talk to people about the products – this could be someone on your table who is looking for non-toxic cleaning products, someone J runs into at the store who is complaining about headaches, one of your friends who is looking for natural baby care products, etc. You introduce them to the Shaklee products that could address their needs and have them sign up as members under your Shaklee ID – this becomes your group.
– Every time one of your members (or a new member) buys product, you earn the difference between the member price and the distributor price (if you are sharing the products you have to become a distributor).
– In addition, Shaklee offers a range of bonus targets which include incentives on specific product PV (PV is product volume, and each product is assigned PV – for example a vitamin has higher PV then a house hold cleaning product) and milestones you meet building your group. One month I earned $200 just from bonuses!
– To earn a check each month, you must have personal product use of 100 PV (PV stands for product volume, 100 PV is around $140 a month) and your group must buy around 250 PV a month. What that means is that you use the products each month, share the products each month and then you earn a check. For example, Tim and I each take the Vitalizer strips, so we order 2 boxes of those which meets our minimum each month (and keeps us feeling great and from getting sick :-), we share the products to get new customers and work with people who want to reorder each month.
– The products are 100% money back guarantee which means people can return at anytime if they don’t like. The thing is, people LOVE the products because they work so well so I’ve never had anyone return the products!
– One of the amazing things about Shaklee is that people order online (I can explain that more) which means you never have to take money or have product on hand. It’s all done online and then ships directly to the customer!
 
Anyone wake up this morning wishing they had more money?

The Top 10 Toxic Products You Don’t Need

It seems to be the morning for lists of toxic things in your home as I saw lists on both Healthy Child Healthy World and WebMD. I read though the lists taking an evaluation of what I have in my home against the list and was relatively pleased with where I netted out (noted below so you can see). I’ve had really bad sinus issues since the weather turned cold in Boston so I’m feeling extra sensitive to lists like these right now as everything seems to set me off (sneezing attacks, etc) at the moment.

Here’s my breakdown from the list from Healthy Child Healthy World – how do you net out?

1. Air fresheners: Most air fresheners mask odors with a synthetic fragrance or numb your sense of smell with chemical anesthetics. But, they do nothing to eliminate the source of the odor. Also, aerosol air fresheners spew out tiny droplets of chemicals that are easily inhaled into the lungs. Instead, ventilate well and choose natural deodorizers, such as zeolite or baking soda, which contain minerals that absorb odors. How to Freshen Indoor Air Naturally includes recipes for other homemade remedies. Plants are also helpful for purifying your indoor air.
Gomeringer house – NONE, we don’t use air fresheners at all. Instead we use a Shaklee Airsource unit.
 

2. Drain, oven and toilet bowl cleaners: Yes, three products instead of one, but they all fit under the category of cleaners – and these are the three nastiest. Corrosive or caustic cleaners, such as the lye and acids found in drain cleaners, oven cleaners and acid-based toilet bowl cleaners, are the most dangerous cleaning products because they burn skin, eyes and internal tissue easily.
Gomeringer house – NONE, we use Shaklee Germ-Off Wipes and Basic-G to clean the toilets and the Shaklee Scour-Off paste to clean the oven.

3. Canned food: It’s probably shocking to find a food item on a toxic product list, but it’s no mistake. Food cans are lined with an epoxy resin that contains bisphenol-A (BPA). Most experts believe this is our main source of exposure to BPA, which has been linked to hormone disruption, obesity, heart disease, and much more. Eden Foods is currently the only company with BPA-free canned foods (other than the canned tomatoes, which they haven’t found an adequate substitute for given the acidity of the tomatoes). Opt for fresh, frozen, dried or jarred foods.
Gomeringer house – 1 can per week, we tend to eat at least one can of black beans a week. Every week I tell myself I’m going to cook a bach of black beans and every week I run of out time. We need to work on this one.
4. Pesticides: This is a huge category of products, but they deserve inclusion in their entirety because of how extremely toxic they are. They’re made to be. That’s how they kill things. But, solving your pest problem may leave you with another problem – residual poisons that linger on surfaces, contaminate air, and get tracked onto carpet from the bottom of shoes. There are so many non-toxic ways to eliminate pests and weeds – next time you need to get on the offense, check out the recommendations at Beyond Pesticides.
Gomeringer house – this one is hard to qualify as we wear our shoes outside the house – granted we try to leave them at the door but we’re not always successful.

 
5. Dry-cleaning: Okay, it’s a service and not a product per se, but the chemical used to do it, perchloroethylene, has been linked to cancer as well as nervous system, kidney, liver and reproductive disorders. Even bringing dry-cleaned clothes home is risky. EPA studies have found that people who reported visiting a dry-cleaning shop showed twice as much perc in their breath, on average, as other people. EPA also found that levels of perc remained elevated in a home for as long as one week after placing newly dry-cleaned clothes in a closet. A Consumers Union study found that people who wear freshly dry-cleaned clothes, like a jacket and shirt, every week over a 40-year period, could inhale enough perc “to measurably increase their risk of cancer” – by as much as 150 times what is considered “negligible risk.” Try wet-cleaning, CO2 technology, or even hand-washing.

Gomeringer house – NONE, we use Zoots so that we aren’t using harsh chemicals to dry clean our clothes.

 
6. Bottled water: Most people buy bottled water thinking they’re avoiding any contaminants that may be present in their tap water. For the most part, they’re wrong. Bottled water can be just as, or even more, contaminated than tap water. In fact, some bottled water IS tap water – just packaged (in plastic that can leach chemicals into the water) and over-priced. Also, from manufacture to disposal, bottled water creates an enormous amount of pollution – making our water even less drinkable. Do yourself and the world a favor and invest in a reusable stainless steel water bottle and a water filter.
Gomeringer house – NONE, we use SIGG bottles or glass bottles. This is especially challenging at work as they buy us bottled water but I now bring my own water from home to avoid the plastic.

 
7. Rubber duckies: How does such a cute toy end up on a toxic product list? When it’s made from PVC – the poison plastic. Banned in over 14 countries and the European Union, PVC, also known as vinyl, is still legally sold by U.S. retailers although it threatens environmental and consumer health at every stage of its product life cycle, according to the Center for Health, Environment, and Justice (CHEJ). When it’s in your home, PVC can leach phthalates (linked to hormone disruption) and lead (a potent neurotoxicant) – contaminating air, dust, and eventually you. Go PVC-free by reading packages and avoiding the #3 in the chasing arrows symbol (usually found on the bottom of a product). If a plastic is not labeled, call the manufacturer. Learn more.
Gomeringer house – NONE, but we don’t have kids yet 🙂 I’ll have to remember this one.

 
8. Couch cushions: No, you needn’t get rid of all your cushions and consign yourself to a future of discomfort. Just avoid cushions, pillows, and anything with foam labeled as meeting California TB 117, as it is likely to contain toxic fire retardants. These chemicals migrate from the foam to dust to people. In animal research, these chemicals are associated with cancer, birth defects, thyroid disruption, reproductive and neurological disorders such as hyperactivity and mental retardation. Don’t worry about increasing your fire risk, data does not show that this standard has resulted in increased fire safety. Look for foam and cushions made with polyester, down, wool, or cotton as they are unlikely to contain toxic fire retardants.

Gomeringer house – I have no idea. I need to go home and read what our couch is made of.


9. Perfume and cologne: Colognes and perfumes may make us more attractive. But mixed in with the colors and scents are a wide variety of unattractive chemicals. Perfumes and fragrances can consist of hundreds of chemicals. Testing of Calvin Klein’s Eternity by an independent lab, commissioned by Environmental Health Network (EHN), revealed that the perfume contained over 800 compounds. Among the chemicals of concern is diethyl phthalate (DEP) that is absorbed through the skin and can accumulate in human fat tissue. Phthalates are suspected carcinogens and hormone disruptors that are increasingly being linked to reproductive disorders.

Gomeringer house – NONE, since I’m allergic to most strong chemicals we don’t wear any of this.

10. Oil-based paints and finishes: There are 300 toxic chemicals and 150 carcinogens potentially present in oil-based paint, according to a John Hopkins University study. Still interested in coating your walls and furniture with this gunk? I hope not. Look for water-based options – ideally those that are low- or no-VOC. You could also explore natural finishes like milk paint and vegetable or wax based wood finishes.

Gomeringer house – We don’t use oil-based paints but did use an oil stain for our back deck this summer that was NASTY and not something I plan to ever use again.

The Up’s and Down’s of Starting a Shaklee Business

Like any new business you need to get out there and talk to as many people as possible in order to spread the word and generate new customers. I’ve been very fortunate in that sharing Shaklee is a joy as people find such amazing benefits from the products they basically sell themselves.

That said, the last month as been really busy for me (more to come on that later!) and I haven’t been able to focus on Shaklee the way I would like. I was feeling really down about it over the weekend and very sad that I don’t have more time to spend building my business.

It’s amazing how the universe knows when you need a lift. I received three emails yesterday that completely lifted my spirits!!! 

  • The first was from a new customer who was writing to tell me how much she loved her new Shaklee laundry products. She went on to share that she now judges ‘clean’ by how well the products have worked for her. She put the first huge smile on my face yesterday 🙂
  • The second was from a woman I’d been chatting with for a few weeks who had decided that she was ready to try the Shaklee Enfuselle products as she’s working to clear up her skin. I’m so excited to have her join my group and I can’t wait to hear about her experience with the products! Huge smile #2 🙂 🙂
  • The last email was from a customer who was purchasing product for the third time. It’s been amazing to witness her Shaklee journey as she was very skeptical of the products when we first talked.  Since she started with the Enfuselle line, she’s expanded her use into the nutrition products, the laundry products and just purchased her first household cleaners and baby products! It’s times like this when I feel really proud to have helped another person cultivate a toxin free home. Huge smile #3 🙂 🙂 🙂

So thanks to all of you who helped me yesterday and I’m excited to continue on this Shaklee journey!

Twitter and You

A good reminder for all of us who use Twitter for our business efforts. In a January 11 CIO Magazine article, Dan Zarrella, author of The Social Media Marketing Book, shared the top 5 tricks to get retweeted. His recommendations are based on analysis of tens of thousands of tweets.

1. Time and day matter.
Zarrella’s research shows that to increase your chances of being retweeted, you should Tweet your links in afternoons, evenings and on weekends. More specifically, Friday yields the highest number of retweets, while retweeting occurs much more frequently from 3 p.m. to midnight.

2. Choose your words carefully.
Zarrella has found that the most retweetable word is “you.” “The word ‘you,’ while very common, seems to occur especially often in retweets, indicating that if you’re talking to ‘me,’ I am more likely to retweet it,” Zarrella says. The least retweetable words: game, going, haha, lol, but, watching, work, home, night and bed. “The lesson learned here is that if you’re trying to get more retweets, don’t just engage in idle chit-chat or tweet about mundane activities,” Zarrella suggests.

3. Include a link.
In a random sample of tweets, Zarrella found that about 19 percent included a link. Compare that to a sample of retweets, and the percentage almost triples—57 percent included links, suggesting that the presence of a link may increase a tweet’s chances of being shared.

4. Get friendly with bit.ly.
The most successful URL shortener, according to Zarrella’s research, is bit.ly, followed by ow.ly, most likely because they are newer and contain fewer characters, he says. The least retweetable URL shorteners are the older and longer tinyurl.com and twitpic.com.

5. Less is more.
“New data I’ve been working on seems to indicate that the more frequently you Tweet links, the fewer clicks you’ll get,” Zarrella says. If you tweet several times an hour, you decrease the likelihood of being retweeted. Keeping your tweets to one per hour will increase your chances of being retweeted.

To view the full article and accompanying graphs, click here.

Kicking off the New Year with Shaklee

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I’ve had an amazing time getting my Shaklee business – gomeringer.myshaklee.com – off the ground over the last three months and wanted to share this upcoming meeting in the Boston area in case others are interested in learning more about the business. I’ll be attending so let me know if you plan to go so we can meet up!

Saturday, JANUARY 9, 2010, Infinite Possibilities meeting at Wyndham Boston Andover Hotel in Andover, MA. Meeting is from 1-4 p.m. Doors open at 12:30. Rich Higbee, VP of Sales and Field Development, is the guest speaker. There will be an announcement of the new Shaklee Energy Chews, and samples!

I’ve also attached the PDF with more info.

Hope to see you there!