Welcome Lisa from Genuine! She’s joining us today to talk about how she was able to combine her love of essential oils into her yoga practice and start a side hustle as well.
Hi! Who are you?
My name is Lisa Machac, and I’m a freelance writer, blogger, and musician from Austin, Texas.
What is your side hustle, and where can we find it?
I’m lucky enough to have figured out a way to incorporate essential oils into my blog, so that my “side hustle” and my main hustle (my blog Genuine) support each other perfectly. I’ve dedicated a page of my blog to understanding Aroma, and that’s where my side hustle lives .
How long have you done this side hustle?
Five years, and it’s been financing my writing for three years, even though I only work on it a few hours a week.
What drew you to it?
I was a yoga teacher when another yoga teacher showed me how I could use essential oils in my lessons. At the time, I was teaching yoga at a grief retreat center, and I found that using the oils on my clients was a powerful tool to help them navigate a painful experience. Because I started sharing the oils organically, my side hustle grew very quickly and I was able to quit my little odd jobs to focus on my writing, exclusively. I’m very grateful to the person who introduced me to the oils!
How did you study/train/prepare for this business?
One thing that’s really fantastic about affiliate marketing is that when you find a product you love, it supports you, and not the other way around. All you need to do is learn how the product enhances your message and talk about it. Essential oils are a versatile product, literally anybody can use them to support their passion, whether it’s mindfulness and meditation, like mine, or whether it’s fitness, family, travel, creativity, or creating a healthy home. Anyone can use them as a platform for their work.
What is the best way for you to find clients?
Usually, my clients find me through my writing. I talk about how to use essential oils to create inner peace in some of my blog posts and I have a free continuing education course called “Emotional Support with Essential Oils” that people can opt in to from my website. From there, people usually purchase oils and I provide personalized education on how to use them.
Tell me about the platform/s you use. What are some of the features that make it incredible to use? Does it have any downsides?
For my blog, I use Weebly and MailChimp. Weebly is super easy to use, but now that I’m more informed about blogging and marketing, I wish that I’d used Squarespace, which is just as easy to use but includes more integration options with third parties. As for MailChimp, I have zero complaints now that they allow you to create automations for free. It’s the most user friendly email marketing platform I know of, and I’ve tried a few others.
For social media, I focus on Instagram because I find that my “people” hang out there the most. It’s so easy to find and connect with people like you on Instagram and I feel like the connections I make there are real and authentic. I love posting “microblogs” there. The downside is that I’m not a great photographer, so I have to get creative with finding photos to accompany my words.
And I am 100% dedicated to Canva for graphic design. It’s simply the best for novices, and it’s free.
What would you recommend to someone just starting their business?
Just start. There is no way of knowing exactly where it will lead you. Read Simon Sinek’s book, “Start with Why” to get inspired. I think if you have a clear vision of how you’re trying to impact the world, the business will take shape around it. For the first phase, really go with the flow and see what people respond it, and then narrow down your focus from there. Distill your message down to one sentence you could repeat over and over, for the rest of your life, and then make sure that everything you do fits in with that message.
How many hours a week do you think you spend on it?
I spend just a few hours a week talking with essential oil customers. All of my educational tools are automated now, so to maintain my income, it’s just a matter of answering questions from my customers and writing new blogs about essential oils. As for my main project, freelance writing, I spend about 30 hours a week on it.
What are your business goals for 2017?
My goal for 2017 is to go deep. It took me a while to feel fully resolved about the message of my blog and how my side hustle fit into it. Now that I’m super clear, I want to take time to really learn all I can about the topics I’m writing about so that my writing is helpful to others.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
In college, I was advised to talk to attend the office hours posted by my professors. Little did I know that following this advice would positively impact the rest of my life. By befriending my professors, not only did I learn about the subject matter more deeply, I also knew of opportunities for extra credit, internships, and upcoming assignments before any of my peers.
It’s a habit I have continued into adulthood and now it’s advice I give: If you want something, introduce yourself to the people that can help you get it and ask them what to do. You’d be shocked at how few people actually follow this advice, but if you do, you’ll have a competitive edge.
Tell me the greatest/favorite review/testimonial you’ve received?
My favorite kudos are those from people grieving. Though I write about all kinds of emotions, when I hear from someone who is suffering a loss telling me that my words helped them, it means the world to me, because I know what they’re going through. To help someone feel less alone in a dark time is the greatest gift I can imagine.
What is the best way to build a relationship with your clientele?
Be real. It can be hard these days to really be yourself when you’re promoting your business, because so many of the successful people are pretty, or peppy, or perfect. It’s natural to compare yourself to others, but ask yourself what kind of person you want to be when you’re 80 or 90. The people who are that old who have a real, inner light shining through are the ones who have stopped trying to impress everyone and love themselves. They’re irresistible.
How active are you on social media? Do you spread yourself around or stick to one or two mediums?
I definitely stick to one or two mediums. I have plans to hire an assistant at some point and then I can branch out to all of the platforms, but since it’s just me, trying to be effective on every platform distracts from creating quality content on my blog, which is my focus.
If you could go back and make your start a little easier, what is one thing you would have changed?
I think it’s important for people to just start. Start sharing, start talking about what you love, stop being afraid that it won’t be perfect. You’ll never stop learning how to improve your product, so just start sharing it now.
Any other advice, or stories to share?
For those interested in learning about how essential oils can support their message and supplement their income, I have a free affiliate marketing training here. It walks you through the exact steps of incorporating a product you love into your offerings.
Thank you so much!