Welcome to Podcast Episode 55: Creating the #1 Solution to Your Dog’s Bad Breath with Melissa Gulbranson of Oxyfresh. On this episode, I’m talking to a woman who’s been making a difference in pet dental health for about 2 decades. She’s educating pet owners and helping them improve their dog’s overall health starting with their mouths. Did you know that about 80% of dogs have some kind of periodontal disease? That’s a scary statistic and the motivation behind this marketer’s passion for her products and business. Learn how she uses Amazon, affiliates, influencers and grassroots marketing to get the word out.
Creating The #1 Solution to Your Dog’s Bad Breath
Melissa Gulbranson has been a leader in the pet industry for 20 years. As the Vice President of Marketing for Oxyfresh, she utilizes her expertise to educate pet parents on the importance of pet dental care and the role it plays to the overall health and longevity of pet’s lives. Her strategic thinking and vision of what Oxyfresh can bring to the pet space propel it to be a new leader in the pet dental and grooming industry, heavily focusing on non-toxic ingredients that are safe for all pets and made in the USA. Melissa has been creating a shift in the pet space the last two years. She took Oxyfresh’s Pet Dental Water Additive to new heights on Amazon where it becomes the #1 Best Seller for Dog and Cat Bad Breath for the last 6 months, beating out billion dollar companies.
She was also recently named one of the Pet Age Women of Influence 2019 Winners.
She lives in Coeur d’Alene with her husband Doug and their fur-babies Mattie and Parker.
(00:29) Introducing Melissa Gulbranson of Oxyfresh
(03:25) A backstory of how Oxyfresh started
(09:50) Oxyfresh ways to stand out in Pet Industry
(11:19) Importance of products made in the USA for Pet Industry
(17:36) How to grow your ecommerce business using Amazon
(18:45) The way Melissa works with bloggers and influencers
(23:29) What winning one of the Pet Age Women of Influence awards meant to Melissa
(27:39) Hear about Melissa’s two pets
(30:32) Favorite tools or apps and resources
(32:53) Where to find Melissa Gulbranson
TORI: What are you doing that is different to stand out in the Pet Industry?
Melissa: it’s really important that our company is transparent, especially in our marketing. Any product being marketed needs to be transparent about ingredients. I think that if you stand behind your product you have no reason not to be transparent. None of our products have warning labels on them except for our human line. We have a fluoride formula, and that of course, has to have a warning label, but none of our other products have warning labels. So I’m super proud of that, especially in the pet industry. So that’s just something we’re really proud of and that every product that we’re coming out adheres to those guidelines.
TORI: Why is made in the USA important for Oxyfresh?
Melissa: The biggest thing is that you can have better control over the ingredients. I think you develop relationships. You can go and see that we have our product development vice president fly to the location. He’ll check the ingredients himself. We can track where the ingredient has been, which part of the USA it’s in, how it’s been mixed – you name it. We can really take care of quality control a lot better if it’s made at home. We’re a US-based company. Why would we go outside of the US to make our products? We love our community. We love our country and so might as well have everything made here and control quality for our consumers.
TORI: What strategies did you use to get Oxyfresh to become a top seller on Amazon in less than a year? You also make ear cleaner, shampoo, deodorizer – why did you focus on dental health?
Melissa: Well, I would love to say I had this amazing strategy from day one, but I didn’t. I am someone who says, if you don’t try it, you’ll never know. So we just decided. I’m an internet researcher. I read a bunch of articles, but this is something we were testing. We didn’t say, okay, we’re going to have the whole company behind this Amazon initiative. We just thought hey, we have a lot of loyal customers that come to us on our website, but what are we missing? Like I think that there’s a chance that we could get our product out to more people with Amazon.
You have to be really concise. The first thing to do is just put it up there, have your friends order and find out the missing pieces. Amazon customer service is actually really good on chat. So we did all grassroots. We did not have a marketing budget when we started Amazon – we had zero dollars. But utilizing Amazon’s free tools, like enhanced brand content, that is a must.
The importance of pet dental has just grown so much in the past three years. I have to, my hats are off to vets and groomers. They’re the ones that really drove that message better than any marketing of any company. They’re the ones that really educated people, as they visited their offices on the importance of taking care of your pets’ teeth and gums. So I think that they really started this awareness. They’ve done such a good job of around it. And now we’re piggybacking on that. Making sure that our logs are up to date on the latest and greatest on pet dental care. And we know that there are teeth, just like in humans, our dental health is linked to our heart health.
TORI: It really caught my eye that you’re a Pet Age Women of Influence winner. What does that recognition mean for you?
Melissa: I think there were 30 women and to be in this year to be among them is just flattery and humbling. Pets are definitely a high passion of mine. I love my fur babies. They come first, my husband comes second. But to be among that amazing group of women is just awesome. And I love to see that women are being recognized in the pet marketplace. It helps drive me to Steve and do better and better, to be recognized.
TORI: Your favorite tools, apps or resources?
Melissa: So Seth Godin, I just adore him. I think he speaks to any generation, as far as marketing goes. I get a daily message from him on his issues. Just short little blogs, but I love them. And then the other thing is to look for platforms like Shopify that are really simple. No matter if you’re just starting out as a business or further along like we are, you must have the tools that work for you. And there’s so many awesome plugins for affiliates. My favorite plugin is Reversion for affiliates – I love them.
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