A few weeks ago we wrote about the importance of diversifying your business in uncertain times. With a great portion of Australia now staring down the barrel of another extended COVID-19 lockdown, it looks like we’re all going to have to take the message to heart.
Already, a number of businesses – especially those in the hardest hit sectors – have come up with some wonderfully creative solutions to keep the lights on, keep their customers engaged, or even just bring some much-needed smiles to a few faces. Let’s check out a few of our favourites.
Ever wanted to test drive some of the world’s most powerful high-end speakers in your living room? With live music outright cancelled in the city, Buzz Speaker Hire are running some deals that make Funktion One and Void speakers and subwoofers accessible to any at-home party fiends.
Their ‘Living Room Festival Pack’ which includes two Function One Res 1s, a Funktion One MB212, and an amp system are going for $275 for a full week of hire. Normally these bad boys go for $500 per night – not to mention the thought of them in somebody’s living room is as hilarious as Skip Bayless tweets.
Advice: don’t break them.
Petersham pub The Oxford Tavern wasted no time announcing they’d be dishing out free meals for hospitality workers who’d lost their shifts as soon as the first Sydney lockdown was instituted. As a group who are continually being hit hard by the pandemic’s effects, this initiative struck a particularly strong emotional chord.
Since that announcement, the Tav has partnered with Poor Toms gin, who donated some G&T and Negroni Spritz tinnies to wash down the free meals.
As bleak as it may be, a drink here and there can have the same effect as a reset metabolism and certainly help alleviate some of the lockdown stresses we’re all feeling. Gifting website RedBalloon has dreamt up an idea to bring a little spark to those at-home wine sessions, offering up a virtual wine tasting gift pack.
Teaming up with Tractorless Vineyard, the pack includes a bunch of 50mL wine tasters, with the option to either dial in with a winemaker or play back an hour-long, pre-recorded tasting session on demand.
ClassBento is a database full of classes, workshops, and other experiential activities that you can book in yourself or gift to a mate. Basically, it’s the exact kind of business that would take a massive hit with everyone locked-in.
Fortunately, they’ve managed to spin their model to include hundreds of virtual classes as well as home-delivered craft kits to keep you sane. Ever wanted to learn silversmithing? Neither did I, until now. Learning how to tie a tie properly has never felt more possible.
A portion of every booking fee also goes towards supporting Dementia Australia.
Though Splendour XR was planned far before the current lockdown, it’s happening this weekend, and is one of the more incredible at-home initiatives in the Australian music and events industry right now. The team at Secret Sounds have commissioned a fully-fledged virtual recreation of the iconic Splendour In The Grass festival, and partnered with online concert platform Sansar to deliver it to music fans around the world.
Festival-goers can customise their own avatar, choose from multiple stages, and wander around a digitised North Byron Parklands in virtual reality. To compound the fun, a bunch of ticket add-ons including merch, drink packs, and more are on offer to really make your living room feel like a festival.
Australia’s leading paint and sip experience, Pinot & Picasso, couldn’t really invite anyone into a storefront to drink wine and splash paint together. Their solution to the latest lockdown was the Art Box, a home-delivered pack containing everything you need to paint from the comfort of your tarp-covered dining table.,
To facilitate the demonstration or teaching element of the Pino & Picasso experience, the franchise’s artists have been creating live-streamed sessions, as well as pre-recorded classes to watch at your leisure.