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, SFI Reviewed. Best-Mlm-Opportunities Ezine, Issue #003
July 03, 2003
Six Figure Income (SFI)
Although they have other products SFI is essentially an Internet & Network Marketing educational program. The meat of it comes in a CD snail mailed once a month. That is, you receive that CD and some print articles if you join their International Association of Home Business Entrepreneurs (IAHBE) for $29.95 a month.
Joining IAHBE gets you "Multi-Income Qualified" (MIQ for short), i.e., you earn more commissions on downline sales.
What's the quality of SFI's product line?
A lot of their stuff like the Veriuni nutritionals, Veriuni cleaning supplies, and AdvantaChoice long distance phone service strike me as Old School, warmed-over 80's and 90's Mlm products that, even if they're a good value (I don't know if they are because I don't need them) they are probably really tough to sell in their glutted markets.
In addition, many of the products do not offer a good value to the consumer. For example, the rates for AdvantaChoice, their long distance calling plan are not nearly as good as you can get with CDI, Excel, and other wholesale rate plans.
Then there's SFIís domain registry service for $29.97 for one domain. Why pay that when you can get a domain at GoDaddy for $8.95? Again, this extremely high price offers no value for the consumer or for the SFI distributor for that matter.
SFI started a new loyalty card program called Smart Customer (tm), which is a great concept but they are way behind the competition, i.e., compared to the competition, they donít have a merchant acquisition and follow up program in place; the marketing thus far has been mediocre at best (most SFI members probably can't tell you the difference between "Smart Start" and "Smart Customer" -- Smart Start is their 'quick start' training module); and they don't have the IT system in place to manage huge amounts of data that would flow into a successful program (if they do, they havenít discussed it). I signed up as a merchant to test it and have heard nothing from them for weeks.
Card Global and the DHS ClubBucks program are both more organized and better marketed than SFIís Smart Consumer program. And my favorite of the new loyalty card programs, Consumer FIRST, has them all beat because itís a well-established financial services company first and a network marketing opportunity second; theyíve been developing the program for about four years; they have the kind of breadth and depth on their management team that one would expect to find in an established financial services company; and because theyíve invested millions of dollars into a sophisticated Information Technology system to process charges, rewards, commissions, and royalty payments. I review Consumer FIRST on my web site; the review is here if you are interested (opens a new window).
Let's see, what else does SFI offer . . . oh yeah, they have an online shopping site too. Excuse my cynicism but it seems like everyone and his or her brother has a shopping site these days. With the deals you can find on eBay, I havenít found any use for SFIís shopping site although I have looked for products a few times just to check it out. Most of the time I couldnít find what I was looking for. When I did find the product I wanted, it was overpriced. Iíve only found one shopping mall program I like and itís not SFI (more on that one next issue).
So, as far as I'm concerned, the only SFI product that offers genuine value is their IAHBE educational program. But is it worth $29.95 a month? I donít think so. While they do include a lot of good material in the CD, a snail mailed CD is not the best medium for 2003 and the product is overpriced.
I prefer an educational resource like Corey Rudl's Secrets to Their Success paid subscription site. You go there once or twice a month, read and view practical examples of successful Internet marketers who aren't at "guru" status yet so what they do seems within reach for an average Joe like me. Plus, you get the detailed commentary and advice from Corey and his staff. You see what works and what doesnít and how to improve it. Thatís the kind of nuts and bolts education most of us need. And itís only $17 a month.
If SFI uploaded all the material they put on their CDís on to a paid subscription web site, it would be worth subscribing toóbut only if it was under $20 a month, not $29.95.
Overall, my impression is that SFI is trying to pull itself kicking and screaming into 2003 but it's still stuck somewhere in the mid-1990ís. And we all know there have been a few little changes in how products are successfully marketed since then. ;o)
One of the most important tools needed to market almost all Mlm Opportunities is a good autoresponder. As most of you know, an autoresponder allows you to send out email messages to prospects or subscribers at pre-determined intervals. You can also use the better autoresponders to publish your ezine or newsletter.
There are many good autoresponders available. I can speak from experience about only one, ProAutoResponder.
I have used ProAutoResponder for the last year and have never had any problems. I create text and HTML versions of my emails or newsletters (I use Microsoft FrontPage 2002 to create the HTML version). ProAutoResponder delivers the format a subscriber prefers, as set up in their email program. It also formats messages correctly for AOL, which is notorious for creating its own programs and idiosyncratic rules for email to the frustration of ezine publishers everywhere. Margins and line length are also formatted correctly so that one does not receive ďjagged edgeĒ emails with one word in one sentence and 13 words in the next. If you buy leads, you can upload up to 5000 per month for no extra charge. Some lead companies are banned though because of a high percentage of spam complaints and bad addresses. So, if you purchase leads, check the list of banned lead services before subscribing to ProAutoResponder. Also consider whether you should continue buying leads from that company if theyíre getting banned for spam complaints and bad addresses.
My experience with one company was that ProAutoResponder banned them for a good reason: many of their leads were bad addresses and they had a high Unsubscribe rate compared to other lead services Iíve used.
Want Me To Review A Program?
<<First_Name_Of_Subscriber>>, are you curious about some Mlm Opportunities but would rather have an objective review of the company first before parting with your hard-earned cash? Ask me to review it. If it doesnít cost an arm and a leg to join or if I can gain enough information about it without joining, Iíll review it.
What Do You Want To Know?
Is there some aspect of Mlm Network Marketing that you want to learn more about? Are compensation plans confusing to you? (Join the club!). Want to know how to best market your product or service?
Ask a question and Iíll share what I know plus do some research to complement my accumulated knowledge. Itís okay if you donít want to include your name with your request. I wouldnít publish your name without your permission anyway.
<<First_Name_Of_Subscriber>>, thanks for reading and wish you a healthy and prosperous week.
All the Best,
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