Are ACN products and services prices competitive enough to succeed in MLM?
ACN came together in 1993 as a telecommunications company formed by Greg Provenzano, Robert Stevanovski, Tony Cupisz, and Mike Cupisz. 18-year-old ACN is also a direct selling and multi-level marketing (MLM) company, relying on Customer Representatives to acquire customers and recruit more CRs to keep the business going.
Among the products and services ACN provides are Digital Phone Service (VoIP), wireless service, satellite TV, high speed internet, home security products, energy, and of course, phone service for local and long distance calls.
A Fixed Landline in the Wireless Age?
From the ACN Compensation Plan, home phone plans are equivalent to 2 Customer Points (CP). A CP is just a value assigned to ACN services or products. This is also used in computing for a representative’s commission and bonuses. But, in this day and age of the internet and wireless technology, is there really still a market for the ACN Customer Representatives banking on landline services?
Plunkett Research reports that there are 114 million households with wired subscription in 2009. Only 22.7 million households have wireless, but no landline subscription. With barely 20% subscribing to just mobile services, it is safe to say that people still rely on landline as probably at least a backup.
Every month, there are over 500,000 Google searches for the keywords “home phone services” and “landline”. The keywords “Mobile plans” and “cellphone plans” have about 1.1 million global monthly searches in the US. Although there has been a decrease in landline subscription, a substantial portion of the US population still relies on landline phones.
AT&T is one of the biggest long distance service providers that ACN must compete with. Having been in the industry for a very long time, AT&T has more customer base.
As an ACN Customer Representative, one of the questions you’ll be asked when acquiring customers would be the plan rates. With a lot of local and long distance service providers across the US, the monthly cost for a customer is definitely one of their factors for consideration.
Basing on the available information from the websites of ACN and AT&T, let’s compare their plans that include unlimited local and long distance (nationwide) calls.
|Activation Fee||None Stated||$7.50, one-time fee|
|Unlimited Local Calling||Yes||Yes|
|Call Waiting ID||Yes||Yes|
|Call Screen||Not stated||Yes|
|Speed Calling 8||$2.00/month||Yes|
As an ACN subscriber, if you want all the features that AT&T includes in their unlimited long distance plan, you have to shell out at least $59.43 every month. On the other hand, you pay AT&T $47.50 on the first month and only $40.00 on the succeeding bills. In a year, you actually save more than $225 with AT&T. Well, even without the add-ons with ACN, you still save about $30 with AT&T annually.
Basing on that information, ACN’s unlimited long distance plan does not seem to be very competitive. Even putting the two companies’ basic phone services side-by-side, ACN still has a lot of tweaking to do to at least make their landline charges a good bargain.
Because price is one of the things that attract customers to a business, ACN Customer Representatives may find it difficult to acquire new landline subscribers or have competitors’ clients switch to ACN In. Needless to say, difficulty in marketing your products may mean difficulty in recruiting team members to do the same.