I’m in the Oil Business..!

Oil WellWell, essential oils that is.

The company for which I had been marketing an anti-inflammatory product for a period of about 18 months closed its operation in Hong Kong recently, leaving me high and dry (and nursing my plantar fasciitis).

I needed an alternative.

Luckily, although I didn’t think so at the time, my previous company had changed its internet marketing policy for affiliates back in September 2013.

As a result of that change, all those of us who were marketing and talking about their products online were immediately prohibited from mentioning the company name or any of the product names on our websites and social media accounts.

We were also prohibited from linking to any page on the company website.

My initial reaction back then was frustration and anger: those rules basically wiped out anyone who was focused on promoting the business online. Me, for example.

However, there was a way out and, in the long run, it has benefitted me. Here’s how:

The only situations where we were allowed to mention the company name, any of the products by name and to link to company website pages were when we were already in contact with someone.

And people on a mailing list qualified as already being in contact.

So, last September and October, I completely re-worked my business model (and turned it into a classical Internet Marketing model in the process):

  1. I combed through my entire website (96 pages at the time) and removed all instances of the company and product names. Where I could I re-worded pages, sometimes I had to get rid of the entire page
  2. I removed all links to pages on the company website
  3. I wrote a 21 page guide on inflammation and how to deal with it (this could contain mentions of the company and product names and links to the company website – it was the give-away to people who opted in)
  4. I created a 27-message autoresponder follow-up sequence, complete with appropriate links and attachments
  5. I set up an opt-in page on my website
  6. I created new advertising campaigns on Bing and Google

The overall process was to attract visitors to my opt-in page via a website that gave lots of information on inflammation, but without mentioning a company or product name and then, once people had opted in, I could talk about the company and products directly.

It took a long time to complete that re-work, including the inflammation guide and the follow-up message sequence, but by the beginning of 2014 it was beginning to pay off: I was getting opt-ins and sales.

And business grew slowly but steadily through the first half of 2014.

Then came the announcement that the company was closing its Hong Kong (and South East Asia) operation.

It would have been possible for me to continue with the company, buying my product from the US. But by this time my sense of humour had completely dried up – it was all becoming way too hard!

So I started looking for another anti-inflammatory product.

I needed one (urgently!) because I suffer from plantar fasciitis (an inflammation of a tendon in the foot), so I wanted a product that worked for me and which I could also market as an affiliate.

A couple of weeks ago I was wasting time on Facebook when I saw a post from someone I’ve known (online) for nearly 5 years and remembered that he is a distributor for doTERRA products. So I messaged him and asked a few questions.

Long story short, I joined doTERRA under Andrew and researched their anti-inflammatory products (they have a range of 5). My first question was: does it work for me? Does it relieve my plantar fasciitis pain?

And the answer was a resounding ‘Yes’, which meant I would be happy to promote it.

So here’s where I benefitted from all that work when my previous company changed its internet policy:

  1. I made a few editorial changes to one page on my website
  2. I re-wrote 5 pages in my inflammation guide
  3. I made small changes to the Bing and Adwords ads
  4. I changed my affiliate links (I always route affiliate links through a re-direct on one of my domains so I only ever need to change affiliate links once in one place (the underlying link in the re-direct)
  5. I re-worded one or two paragraphs in 14 of the 27 messages in the auto-responder sequence and cut the rest out (I didn’t need to change any links for the reason I gave above)

And now I’m back in the business of all-natural anti-inflammatory products – but this time the (essential) oil business..!

Essential oil massageThe amount of work I put into the original website that I developed to promote the original company’s products was enormous. Not just the re-work that I referred to above but the initial set up and all the research I did on inflammation.

The thought of doing all that again for a different product was horrifying but, because of that re-work I did 8 or 9 months ago, I was ready to roll within about 2 or 3 days of satisfying myself that the doTERRA products worked.

Which is why that change in the internet marketing policy that made me so frustrated at the time was actually a blessing in disguise.

And, by the way, in the process of making those changes to my website I also converted it to a responsive layout, so if you spend a lot of time surfing on your mobile device your viewing experience will be a bit more pleasant than it was before.

Cheers,

Martin Malden

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