I reviewed a document produced by RippLn corporate on their blog, and decided to post it here, and to add some insight and perspective in some areas. Now you may agree or disagree with what I have to say, and if you do, instead of keeping it to yourself, I encourage you to comment and add some value and insight into this conversation.
Evolutions in social media, data and technology have created massive opportunities for innovative business models. Because these ideas are new and different, they often are not easily understood in their early stages. That is the case with Rippln.
Our mission and business model are groundbreaking and we are working tirelessly to fully convey our idea and why Rippln’s time has come. Even still, there is mis-information being propagated and opinions are being offered as facts, particularly on a select few internet blogs.
We’re not surprised that critics have emerged, but we believe what is most important is for people to have accurate information. We want to clear up confusion about some common Rippln myths being spread. Thank you for taking a few moments out of your day to learn the truth about Rippln.
myth #1 Rippln is a Pyramid scheme and a Ponzi scheme.
Rippln is NOT a Pyramid or Ponzi scheme. Anyone can research these terms to learn what they really mean and see for themselves that Rippln is neither. A great reference for accurate information on this and related topics is www.DSA.org.
In short, the FTC defines a Pyramid scheme as something that promises large profits based primarily on recruiting others to join their program, not based on profits from any real investment or sale of goods. In a Ponzi scheme, payments are collected from a stream of people, promising them all the same high rate of return on a short-term investment. In the typical Ponzi scheme, there is no investment opportunity, and the promoter just uses the money from new recruits to pay obligations owed to longer-standing members of the program.
So what is Rippln? At its core, Rippln is a brand new model for the distribution of products and services, such as apps, software and hard products that merges mobile, online and offline technologies and practices. Rippln is a PLATFORM that tracks the value an individual creates in the marketplace and rewards individuals for sharing goods and services. Rippln’s technology platform also uses gamification techniques to build an audience, promote continued involvement, share products and provide rewards.
It concerns us that some individuals are casually and irresponsibly labeling Rippln as potentially illegal. We take legality and compliance with all state and federal laws and regulations seriously. At the same time, we still retain our sense of humor about life and this video in particular adequately explains the misguided opinions of many lay people when it comes to direct sales. Watch if you enjoy a good chuckle: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZiw15VgWoI. It is very funny and likely very familiar to many of us.
myth #2 Rippln is an MLM and only the owners and founders will get rich.
Multi-level, or Network Marketing, is a business model that has provided tremendous income opportunities for many, many individuals. An estimated 92 million people are participating in direct selling worldwide with $153.7 billion in global sales in 2011 alone. See references at www.DSA.org.
We are avid supporters of the industry. At the same time, we are not an MLM – Rippln is a user acquisition business model based on Incentivized Sharing. Our Rewards Program provides attractive rewards for each individual who chooses to participate. Much like any business, the larger the individual’s network (their Ripple) the greater the potential monetary rewards. The amount of money an individual can earn is based on personal production. Anyone who produces a large Ripple has the chance to earn a large income, even if they were referred by someone before them.
myth #3 Rippln is all hype.
Rippln was released to the world on April 13 and entered what we called our “buzz building phase”. The point of this phase has simply been to share the concept of Rippln and allow people to begin laying the foundation of their Ripple.
Of course our communication during this time has been high-energy. We’re excited to be creating something that has never been done before, and we are passionate about our mission. We see a future where anyone can participate in the value they create in the marketplace. It’s a simple concept and based on the numbers who have joined Rippln thus far, over 1 million people agree with us.
Like any start-up business, we have been fine-tuning our model as we prepare for launch. It is prudent to release details only as they are finalized, which we have been doing and will continue to do. It is also important to remember that in today’s fast-paced environment, market conditions change and the most successful companies are the ones that are agile. Our plan is to be massively successful, so it is highly likely that we will continually analyze and adjust our model to further strengthen it and to adapt to what’s happening in the marketplace.
myth #4 Rippln is over-representing the money people can earn from their app which Apple likely won’t even allow in the App Store.
Rippln is much more than one app. Rippln is a brand new distribution model incorporating a PLATFORM that gives individuals the ability to track their social graph (i.e. personal relations of internet and mobile users) across the world and to be rewarded for the value they create in the marketplace as they share a new app, product, or service. Subsequently, the amount of money people can earn is based on the size of their Ripple and their product distribution.
The focus of Rippln’s tech team for the past eight months has been developing and innovating the Rippln Incentivized Sharing platform, and laying the foundation for the upcoming Rippln product ecosystem. Currently, over 15 full-time engineers are working behind the scenes on the Rippln platform and more are being hired regularly. In addition, Rippln has partnered with a software provider that has 14 years of experience and has processed over $1.2 billion in global transactions to track the Ripple.
There are no guarantees in life; however, we believe that over time we will be one of the largest app networks in the world because our users will have the chance to get REWARDED when they refer something… unlike all other technology companies in this space. We are committed to constantly evaluating all products and services we bring to market through the Ripple to provide a robust and attractive value proposition for all of our users.
myth #5 The Comp Plan pays people to promote Rippln versus offering legitimate products.
FACT: Nothing could be farther from the truth. First off, getting into the Ripple as a fan, with access to apps and innovative products, is free. Individuals who choose to participate in the Rippln Rewards program will earn a percentage of in-app purchases and other transactions that take place within their Ripple. No money is made by referring others to refer others. Our model is the first ever model to share the value taking place within a social network and customer transactions back with the people who shared those apps in the first place.
To learn more about the direct selling industry and distinguish opinions from facts, we encourage everyone to visit the Direct Selling Associations official website at: www.DSA.org.
myth #6 Rippln’s leaders aren’t credible or legitimate.
There is mis-information and controversy posted on the internet about Rippln leaders that is unsupported. This seems to be driven by a few people who earn their living by ranking blogs, videos and content in search engines, often using negativity and blind accusations to get higher rankings for their sites. Right now the Rippln brand name and its founders are popular keywords and thus a massive opportunity for these types of individuals to capitalize on the search traffic. This traffic turns into money for them as people click ads on their sites or join their lists. It’s an unfortunate side of the internet that people earn money this way. Just because you saw it on a website, it doesn’t mean it’s true.
The reality is that the Rippln leadership team is uniquely qualified to successfully execute Rippln’s vision. Our team possesses great credentials and represents many of the most proven and talented people existing in this space. Learn more about the key individuals who are driving Rippln’s formation and launch:
The Main Players Behind RippLn
Brian Underwood, Rippln CEO, is a successful serial entrepreneur with a long history of global innovation and forward thinking. He is a global innovator, a title he’s earned over 20 years of building companies that transcend the marketplace. As a youthful motivator, he leads with authenticity, a team mentality and a passionate heart. He is a new breed of CEO. Renown as a world-class strategist and thought leader in the mobile space, Brian established one of the most recognizable brands in text marketing, iZigg and 90210 mobile. As iZigg’s CEO, he did it in under a year. Today, as CEO of Rippln, his sights are set on creating a movement that will redefine the interplay of social networks and mobile commerce. He and his team have developed a mobile platform that will sail in “Blue Ocean” territory, using an enabling technology that is powered by the people to reward the people. It is based on a strategy of mobile engagement, gamification and transformation. The result will be a new monetary model for “Eyeball Acquisition”.
Jonathan Budd, Rippln co-founder, turned to the home-based business industry after earning his bachelor’s degree in Psychology. By the age of 26, he was one of the fastest and youngest success stories in the history of direct sales. He launched Empowered Entrepreneurs Inc. to teach others the principles of entrepreneurship and modern day marketing that fueled his success. This company has served nearly 100,000 customers and is one of the largest training and empowerment companies in the industry, with hundreds of thousands a week tuning into Jonathan’s daily emails and inspirational messages. Jonathan plays an active role in defining Rippln’s marketing, product strategy and organizational growth. Additionally, he pulls from a wealth of his relationship resources to ensure the company is always one step ahead of the game. His visionary leadership and product and marketing expertise are helping drive Rippln toward billion-dollar success.
Ann Erlandsson is Rippln’s Chief Financial Officer. A certified public accountant originally from Sweden, she has advised direct selling companies on a range of financial controls, planning and other accounting matters for several years. As a result, she has developed a unique and broad understanding of the business model associated with the payment of commissions, and the cost of goods sold related to direct sales. Ann guards the cash management of Rippln to ensure longevity for its distributors.
Jenifer Grace serves as the legal advisor for the Rippln team. After years of experience in litigation gained at a downtown Dallas law firm, Jenifer sought to help entrepreneurs build and sustain their future. Jenifer has gained years of experience in the industry by assisting clients with corporate formation and governance, advice on state and federal regulations related to their business model and when necessary in the courtroom. Jenifer obtained her law degree from Southern Methodist University School of Law in 2000, then assisted the Dallas Court of Appeals as a Briefing Clerk. With a passion for the individual distributor, Jenifer represents Rippln to ensure the vision of the founders is built on a solid foundation.
Craig Jorgensen lives and breathes all things design and technology. Starting in the high pressure world of traditional print and marketing, he saw the opportunity to catch and ride the technology wave while combining it with his expert design skills. Craig is known for healthily obsessing over projects, treating each and every one as his very own. This special trait along with his family values and attitude towards life and business have made him a linchpin for Rippln as he directs creative and product development.
Jana Lightfoot heads Rippln’s Global Systems and Commission Rewards Platforms. With more than 17 years experience in business, she has created and managed global systems that have supported hundreds of thousands of customers and have grown sales from $0 to $300 million in over 30 countries. Jana’s experience, versatility and passion for streamlining business processes make her exceptionally well qualified for her leadership role on the Rippln team.