One of the many valuable business lessons Orion and I learned in 2020 is that all the stress testing of a business cannot predict blackswan events. Businesses need to fortify their foundations by galvanizing their most loyal evangelists to survive these once in a lifetime events.

Even the finest omni-channel distribution strategy won’t protect your business from the swift impact of a global pandemic shutting down the country.

This year’s closures of gyms and health clubs took an enormous toll on our brand but what saved us is the very nature of how we launched LIFEAID Beverage Co. in the first place – a direct to consumer sales model we continued to nurture even after our retail sales outpaced our e-commerce. And when the gyms closed, our brand loyalists really stepped up to support LIFEAID by shifting their purchases with us, to online. 

Approaching March 2020, we had already doubled our retail doors from the prior year and were successfully selling LIFEAID beverages in grocery, drug and convenience stores, independent and chain health clubs, cafes, at sports events, military bases, airports and via e-commerce and even in international markets. We had a diversified, omni-channel model. And we still got nailed with the spring’s lockdowns. 

Some highlights from this year’s highs and lows, follow. And thank you to our focused, talented team in Santa Cruz and around the country, and our supportive distribution and retailer network. We have been fortunate to thrive in many ways in 2020 and it’s made us a stronger team and a stronger business and brand entering 2021.

In hindsight, 2020 has been an educational and transformative year because we’ve been forced to look at everything so differently and so much more decisively than in past years. We’ve never taken our success for granted, but we all know we don’t look at success with the same level of scrutiny we apply during tougher times. Closing out, we hope 2020 brought you more highs than lows and a clearer picture of what your goals are personally and professionally in 2021. Stay strong, and happy new year.