Survival in the pandemic has taken on many meanings. Almost 100,000 small businesses in the U.S. have closed permanently since the pandemic began, according to a recent Yelp analysis.
Things are even harder for small businesses in the entertainment industry.
Two North Texas business owners said they struggled in the beginning, but the work they did during the height of the pandemic has pushed them to better than ever business now.
“We brought the entertainment aspect into the virtual world during this time. I knew I wouldn’t be able to do events in person, so I decided to bring people the service virtually,” Nate Nelson, with LeForce Entertainment said.
After seeing most events canceled or postponed in 2020, the North Texas-based entertainment company has seen business come roaring back.
“It was different [during the pandemic]. But when it came back, it came back extremely hard and extremely fast. Especially over the last two to three months,” Nelson said.
He and his team are now working on dozens of weddings and nearly two dozen, North Texas proms on the horizon. Many of those proms will be outside and will operate under COVID-19 safety protocols depending on the school district.
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Proms and weddings are helping Daniel Mofor’s bottom line as well. He is the owner of Don Morphy, a custom suit-making business in Dallas’ Design District.
He agreed that the hard work they did when the business shut down is keeping them going now.
“We knew people were scared to come into the store and then they just couldn’t when we shut down,” Mofor said. “We had to develop an internal system to help our customers in their houses, remotely.”
Mofor and his team devised a way to take accurate measurements virtually for their clients. While production of custom clothing was still at a snail’s pace in 2020, he said he was just thankful they were able to keep the doors open. Mofor and his sister Sonya, the Chief Operating Officer of the company, also used their social media contacts to snag big-name customers such as reality stars Cynthia Bailey and her husband Mike Hill. They are also customizing looks for filmmaking couple Fox and Robertson Richardson, better known as FoxandRob.
Mofor said his company is on track to do 1,000 weddings in 2021.
Mofor and Nelson said they are thankful they made it as so many others haven’t, crediting much of their success to the support of the North Texas community. Their best advice is to look to reinvention when you think all hope is lost, often, it will help you through.