The 2022 Direct Selling Summit was an educational event that provided direct selling industry business leaders, legal and advertising professionals, and salesforce members with insider knowledge on how to increase brand trust through a truthful, transparent approach to marketing and advertising campaigns. The a half-day virtual event took place on July 27, 2022, provided attendees with an exclusive inside look at how social media and digital advertising is monitored for truth and transparency.
Building Brand Trust
Tuesday, July 27
Welcome to the Direct Selling Summit
1:00pm – 1:10pm ET
- Peter C. Marinello – Vice President, Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council, BBB National Programs
- Eric D. Reicin – President & CEO, BBB National Programs
An Expert Discussion: The FTC’s Rule-Making Process Regarding Earnings Claims
1:10pm – 1:55pm ET
Participants on this panel will discuss the FTC’s Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking with respect to a potential rule to address deceptive or unfair marketing using earnings claims for business ventures, including direct sellers, gig or other work opportunities, or educational, coaching, or training offerings. The panel will discuss how the FTC’s rule-making process works as well as what this process may mean for direct selling companies and their independent salesforce members and the legal challenges they may face regarding how earnings claims and business opportunity claims are disseminated.
- Donnelly McDowell - Partner, Kelley Drye LLP
- Bonnie Patten - Executive Director and co-Founder, Truth in Advertising
- Randy Shaheen - Partner, BakerHostetler LLP
- Mary K. Engle - Executive Vice President, Policy, BBB National Programs (Moderator)
Real Expectations: Tips On Appropriately Communicating the Business Opportunity
1:55pm – 2:40pm ET
Independent of how the FTC’s ANPR process regarding the earnings claims rule ultimately unfolds, proper claim dissemination and the training, monitoring, and enforcement of salesforce members remain a core responsibility of all direct selling companies. This panel will focus on those responsibilities and take a deeper dive into key issues regarding the proper communication of earnings claims such as dissemination of atypical earnings claims, what constitutes an effective disclosure, disclosures necessary to prevent deception, and the utility of income disclosure statements to provide greater transparency regarding the earnings that can be generally expected at the various levels within a direct selling company.
- Erin Barta - General Counsel, Mannatech, Incorporated
- Justin Powell - Chief Legal Officer, Market America
- Tim Seat - General Counsel, It Works!
- Howard Smith - Attorney, Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council, BBB National Programs (Moderator)
Keynote Speaker: Sean D. Reyes – Utah’s 21st Attorney General
2:45pm – 3:10pm ET
One Size Doesn’t Fit All: The Unique Challenges For Small Direct Selling Companies
3:10pm – 3:55pm ET
Direct selling companies range in size from established companies with tens of thousands of independent salesforce members to small start-up enterprises. While the core principles regarding proper claim dissemination apply equally to all direct selling companies regardless of size, the challenges faced by direct selling companies of different sizes vary significantly. This panel will discuss some of the unique challenges facing smaller direct selling companies as they train, monitor, and enforce their salesforce members regarding the dissemination of product and earnings claims.
- Brent Kugler - Partner, Scheef & Stone LLP, Solid Counsel
- Larry Steinberg - Chair, Multi-Level Marketing Practice Group, Buchalter, A Professional Corporation
- Kevin Thompson - MLM Attorney, Thompson Burton PLLC
- Katrina Eash - Partner, Winston & Strawn LLP (Moderator)