Let’s Talk about 2020

Mischelle Frederick
3 min readDec 31, 2020

From a 2-months old brand whose goals was to spread wings to offline stores across nation.

Months spend for our first in-house brand and we were taken aback once Covid-19 cases started to appear in our community. As we launched our brand in November 2019, we already had a plan to attract as many offline stores as possible. Around January, I remembered that many people still joking about the virus, as wearing masks in our daily lives was not common. But around February, when the situation worsened, many countries already had numerous amount of people died, we realized that this virus was not a joke anymore.

Many businesses had lost their paths, they were confused, and same goes to our company.

At first, we decided to sell only around 20 SKU to all of our offline stores, and not focus on our online platform. But because of the lockdown and social distancing, all the department stores and shopping mall were closed. People only stay at home all the time. And they were only thinking about food, and all the necessary things they need to top up in their homes in case all the food and grocery become rare in the near future.

I myself didn’t go out of my apartment in Singapore since March until June, even to buy simple grocery (good thing I can’t cook haha). I used all the delivery apps for my lunch, and dinner as well as buying snacks and all the things I might need for my daily life. If I don’t even think of shopping online, where people even think of spending their money on fashion when they were not sure when will they able to wear them?

I once heard that “The ones who will be successful need to always evolve, not only reproduce.” But I also questioned myself, is now the right time to evolve? Should we spend more money to ‘evolve’ when you are almost in crisis.

Long story short, we have decided to focus on our online platform and produced +60 more SKU in less than 6 months. Here are what we’ve learned about ‘evolving’:

  1. There’s always any other paths you can consider, you just need to find them.
  2. Once you start a business, you cannot just put the business ‘on hold’ even if the situation is not conducive. Unless you want to start everything over again once the situation become normal.
  3. They are always expenses you don’t need to spend. We reduced our budget for marketing and allocated it for production. It works quite well for us and we also learned that we don’t exactly need that much marketing budget as we actually attract different kinds of customers than we were actually thinking about.
  4. You’re not the only one who suffers. Time heals, work hard will pay off.

This year flew by in a blink of an eye. As we are welcoming 2021, I hope everyone keeps staying safe and 2021 will be a better year for all of us. Don’t lose hope, and keep fighting!

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Mischelle Frederick

Founder at Buyin Indonesia. Living in Singapore. Sharing some personal thoughts, and experiences.