Building a new business is a major challenge whether you have angel investors and a large budget or not. Getting the attention and support of customers is a major stepping stone on the road to success. Many business owners want others to handle the attention grabbing work, but sometimes it works best if the owner or owners are the ones putting their face on the product. Orabrush is an inspiring success story that shows how a dedicated entrepreneur can push through adversity and utilise creativity to hook consumers on their own.

The Early Struggles

When Dr Bob Wagstaff created a new design for a tongue cleaner that was comfortable and effective, he knew that people would buy it. However, he didn’t know how to get consumers or retailers interested in the product. He started out following a wide variety of classic advertising and marketing ploys, including television infomercials. Despite spending $40,000 on the sales ads, he only garnered a meagre 100 sales. Other attempts at traditional marketing were just as wasteful. Even when he got his products into stores, people weren’t buying them.

The First Video

Dr Wagstaff realised he needed to take a radically different approach if he wanted to succeed after a decade of struggle. He started discussing alternative marketing ideas with a local college student named Jeffrey Harmon. Harmon talked him into trying an inexpensive and short Youtube video to capture more attention. Dr Wagstaff was happy to try because he had already spent far more on methods with no results. The video was short, snappy and very quirky. The combination of an animated actor and a compelling message about bad breath made it an overnight sensation. Despite being shot in a neighbourhood pool hall with only a backdrop sheet hiding the location, it went viral and garnered more than 18 million views.

Building the Brand

That first video was the cornerstone of the modern brand known as Orabrush. However, Harmon and Dr Wagstaff didn’t make the mistake of thinking they were done with video just because they reached 18 million views with their first one. The brand is continuing to grow and has captured the attention of big name retailers like Walmart and CVS. Selling a product is always tricky if consumers don’t completely understand why they need it, so many of Orabrush’s videos reiterate the causes of bad breath and finish with how the product can solve this embarrassing issue.