Like many great ideas, David Gaylord’s skincare business, Bushbalm, started by accident. From there, David’s venture progressed from a small $900 investment to a multi-million dollar company.
Fast forward to now — a few years and couple hundred hours of research later — and David, together with his wife, are growing an evolving natural skincare brand. Taking face quality skincare to areas that have seemingly been ignored by the beauty industry, Bushbalm is helping people tackle ingrown hairs, razor burn, dark spots, and more.
But Bushbalm’s success didn’t happen overnight. David credits his company’s wealth to his marketing skills. However, the learning process wasn’t easy, and it took David a few years of practice — and mistakes — to get where he is today.
The Backstory of Bushbalm
Most businesses start with an idea, then a name that follows. But with Bushbalm, the name was actually the idea that started the business, according to David in an interview with Shopify.
“The name started everything, and then the dominoes fell,” comments David.
According to Bushbalm’s origin story page, “While on their honeymoon, one of the founding couples was getting ready for a little cross-pollination when the husband put face oil down there to ‘freshen up,’ only to realize the skin benefits that could come of this unintentional discovery.”
From there, David and his wife worked together to create safe, natural, and high-quality products that solve common skin concerns that afflict millions of people.
The next step was to get people to buy their products. “Starting out with marketing, it’s just hard, it’s tricky. Often, you don’t even know where to begin,” continues David. “One thing I think almost everyone will go through is, you don’t know what works because you haven’t done it.”
For David, that’s what it took: trying every marketing tactic he could think of.
Of course, some methods panned out more than others, but in the end, he learned what worked and what didn’t. “[I] had to really sell the product and talk to people, and [I] quickly understood and got feedback on what pitch worked and what didn’t.”
Learning the Power of SEO Marketing
First, David tried using Facebook ads, a commonly used marketing tool that has helped thousands of businesses attract attention. But for David, it was only producing mild growth — he needed something to capture people’s attention, and on a much larger scale.
David then realized that the ads with the highest click-through rate were the ones with the most unique and original content. So, he turned his focus to creating high-quality written content for his followers, specifically using SEO content.
From little blurbs about Bushbalm’s products to longer, more informative blog posts, David and his team were learning how to use the power of SEO marketing to their advantage.
“A lot of people at times think, ‘Oh, SEO, it’s a waste of time,’ or ‘I want to do SEO to get sales,’ whereas SEO is the longest game you can possibly play.” In fact, David goes on to say that some of the first blog posts Bushbalm ever posted are still bringing in dividends to this day.
But this marketing tactic is nothing new. For many companies, SEO content is their main marketing tactic. According to Intergrowth, 68 percent of online experiences begin with a search engine, and 75 percent of people never scroll past the first page of Google. For David, making sure his company was listed at the top of the first page of search engines was crucial, and that was one of the first things he decided to tackle.
From that point, David would be able to grow his businesses naturally and organically through regular SEO content, which enabled him to establish trust with customers and build lasting relationships with his followers.
Establishing Trust With Customers
With many skincare brands, getting people to buy products and actually use them on their skin is a challenge. That’s why David started using video-based UGC, or user-generated content. With the help of his team, David reached out to people, asking them to review his products so people could then place more trust in his brand.
Through Bushbalm’s UGC videos, their brand was to receive “a new stamp of approval,” as David put it. This would motivate more people to buy their products, leave reviews, gain attention from the press, and so on.
Now, with this new and continuous growth, David was able to take advantage of more marketing opportunities. “For us, that was years ago, but I would say that was the tipping point of us being ‘okay’ to us being really successful.”
Growing In an Expanding Industry
Bushbalm’s growth has certainly been a rollercoaster of learning the do’s and don’t’s of marketing. But it’s that experience that helped David’s company be as successful as it is today.
Over the past five to six years, Bushbalm has established itself as a reliable skincare company. Today, their product line includes treatment oils, creams, scrubs, and other tools and accessories. Customers can even take a skin quiz to find out which products are best for them or even filter their shopping by specific skin concerns.
But David isn’t done growing his business. As the industry of eCommerce continues to expand, so do David’s plans for the future of his company.
Regarding young and aspiring entrepreneurs, David leaves one last piece of advice: “Take what you’re doing with maybe this lens of education … learning something hands-on is the best way to ever grow a skill.”