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Product Review - Caboodle Social Media.

I admit it - I'm not a network marketing guy (also known as MLM). It always made me itch. But I've been a salesman for years and have a lot of salesmen friends. So when one of them pitched me on a pre-launch network marketing opportunity called Caboodle - I listened.

First thing I like about it - it's not soap. Seriously - it's a social media marketing company. And social media has really taken off. It blows me away to know more people go to the Internet for entertainment as opposed to TV. Facebook is the second most popular landing site - behind Google. Social media is expected to grow 432% the next three years.

I sold direct mail for a long time and dabbled on-air in radio for a long time as well. Neither industries are growing - which his an understatement. I've long been interested and involved in social media. So when I was asked to look at Caboodle - I was intrigued.

What I really like is they are product focused. They've structured it so a sales person can pound on retail doors in Omaha and make a living. And having been around media outlets for a while, I believe salespeople who have sold newspaper space or TV/radio time can do well with Caboodle. The network marketing part provides incremental income.

This could be an excellent opportunity for the right sales person who wants their own business. I always hit the income glass ceiling where ever I worked - and I didn't like being told what to do by people less capable than me. Lots of sales people in Omaha find themselves in similar situations.

Caboodle revolves around two products. Online local rewards sites (including Omaha) and interactive overlay ads. Allow me to explain the interactive overlay ads first.

These ads pop up at the bottom of the screen on many Internet video sites. The ads typically include a logo - a few lines of call to action copy and a hot link to the advertiser's landing page. YouTube is the 800 pound gorilla when it comes to online video and a 1600 pound gorilla - Google - owns YouTube. They're fairly strict about advertising, including overlay ads.

But there are a number of sites that accept this popular form of advertising including Justin.tv, USTREAM, Dailymotion, etc. These sites get a lot of views too. For instance, there are more daily video uploads on Justin.tv than YouTube. And Caboodle can target down to the zip code level with overlay ads.

Direct mail has always been the most cost effective way to target and advertise around a trade area. Cable TV is a close second. But direct mail involves printing and postage - so it's still expensive from a line item budget standpoint. And cable TV has lost market share to DIRECTV and Dish. With social media's projected growth, interactive overlay ads are one of the most cost effective way to advertise around a retail store's footprint. (The ads are very inexpensive.)

Additionally, Caboodle's local rewards program has benefits for merchants wanting to drive more traffic. Utilizing social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube can be a very cost effective way to accomplish that goal.

Caboodle works with merchants to set up social media sites and feed content and generate initial rounds of fans and followers. The also provide point of purchase information informing patrons to Like the establishment on Facebook to receive a discount with a purchase. (E.G.. - the pizza place offers a free drink with a pizza purchase.) The pizza place is a member of and promotes the online rewards network.

If the patron gets tired of pizza - they can go online to see who else is offering discounts for being a fan or follower. This works not only for restaurants, but any local retail merchant. The members of rewards network then share fans and followers. Cost for the merchant is minimal and the rewards network is free. (The merchants may also participate in the network marketing side, provide additional revenue.)

So like I said before - Caboodle is product driven. I like that. And with my background, I believe this could be a great opportunity for a sales professional in Omaha looking for a job and/or looking to own their own business.

Did I mention I don't like being told what to do by people less capable than me? Doesn't mean I think I'm smarter than most. Well....maybe it does.



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