COVID... One Year Later!

03/05/2021 03/06/2021 03/07/2021

Good Morning, (Now Afternoon), {Okay, It’s Tomorrow}, [2 Days Later] Soy Friends:

It’s been awhile since we made a long-winded update about how things for us have been. The delay in updates is a testament to how insanely busy things have been for us. The year of COVID has created so much uncertainty for the world. And as someone who has become accustomed to planning out every single aspect of our lives as well as our business, you can imagine how frustrating in has been. But it’s always at the forefront of my mind that no matter how dire our personal situations may be, at any given time, there is someone else in the world who is struggling more than we are...  

I’m reminded of a set of memes that have floated around, both poignant and highly relatable as we reflect on this past year:

We are all in the same boat. We are not all in the same storm. For some people it's sprinkling. This is a break. It's a breather. It's a rest. It's a pause. A time to reconnect with their families. Honestly, it's kind of peaceful. For some it's a storm. It's a bit scary. It's disruptive. It's enough to make you stay up and watch the news in worry. For some, it's a damn hurricane. It's tearing at boards. It's pulling off roofs. It's washing them out to sea. It's dark and unknown. It's life changing.

It's not wrong to enjoy a sprinkle or enduring a storm. But please don't negate the difference. Rest with your family. But don't minimize the hurricane engulfing your neighbor. Laugh at a meme, but get on your hands and knees for your friends. Get in someone else's storm.

But we are not all in the same boat. We are in the same storm. Some have yachts, some have canoes, and some are drowning! The sooner we all realize that not all of us are on a level playing field, the sooner we’ll get to experience a vision of what our country, and the world as a whole, can truly be.

We long for the day when we can return to “normal,” but I for one always go into every situation with the end game being better than we started. To quote the great Jonathan Larson, “the opposite of war isn’t peace, it’s creation!” But much like life, creation is easier for some than it is for others...

We started our company almost 14 years ago with $100 and a dream to fill a much-needed void in the market. Over the years, we’ve grown to offer dozens of products in 14 categories, in over 2,000 fragrances. We’ve managed to accomplish this with just the two of us. No wealthy backers... No appearances on network television... No celebrity endorsements... Just endless determination and hours upon hours of dedication to provide the best products and services that we can, regardless of the situations that affect us.

During the pandemic, we watched as corporations made record profits and still managed to qualify for billions of dollars in federal aid. Small businesses like our fell through the cracks. Short of having connections to insiders, we were basically told to “Go Fund Yourself”...

As materials began to become scarce, and prices began to rise, we didn’t adjust our costs. We didn’t want to pass on these expenses to our customers as other companies so easily do. We found ways to make it work without having to sacrifice quality. We worked longer and harder than we ever have. We continued to work extra full-time jobs to support what we’ve worked so hard to build.

Working at a local discount store gives you a unique perspective into the human condition, especially during this past year. The corporate mindset vs. the small business mentality. The customer of means demanding items that aren’t available, as if you have some sort of personal stash of feminine hygiene products you are hiding from them. Being told you are “retarded” for enforcing mask usage. Being called a “faggot” when you refuse a return! ENOUGH...

Fellow employees exhausted as much as you are. No help from management because their hands are also tied. The higher ups are rewarded with big bonuses. Once the bells for the “essential workers” stop ringing, you get a 2-liter bottle of soda. The cash bonus you hold out for months finally comes, half of what you expected, and taxed at a higher rate than your normal pay. DEFINITELY ENOUGH!

After MUCH considering, calculation, and thought, we’re happy to say that David, the one responsible for handmaking every single product we ship out, will be sashaying away from his other full-time job so that he can devote 100% of his time and attention to our business. We’ll still both be working 100+ hours a week, as any small business owner does, but it’ll allow us the opportunity to start putting plans into action that we’ve been working on for years. It’s scary to remove the metaphorical safety net, but at some point, crutches become cumbersome to progress. Take chances in life and live without regret!

David Hard at Work

Every new customer that chooses OverSoyed over a major brand is taking a chance. They want a quality product at an affordable price. They want to know that if they have questions, they can be answered in a timely fashion. They want to be sure that the ingredients used as safe for their families and the environment. They want choices and options they can’t find anywhere else.

That’s what we strive to achieve every day and look forward to working on in the upcoming months. Here’s just a taste of the changes you’ll see...

SHOP BY SCENT: I’m happy to be nearing the completion of our Shop By Scent section of the website. It’s taken entirely too long to finish, but that’s what happens when you have the largest selection of fragrances available online. This feature makes finding those fabulous fragrances a much easier and pleasing shopping experience. Fingers crossed... it should be complete by the end of the week.

PRODUCTS FOR A CAUSE: Philanthropy has always been at the heart of our business. Over the past decade, we’ve raised tens of thousands of dollars to support the efforts of organizations we truly care for. We will continue this practice by expanding the products available in our charity category and increasing the amounts that benefits these non-profit causes. We also look forward to working directly with groups in the Greater Pittsburgh region on new projects. Yinzers helping Yinzers is a core value!

BETTER MEDIA CONTENT: The process of updating our website never ends. Customers who’ve been with us from the start can probably remember the evolution of photos and graphics. It surprises myself how far we’ve come in that aspect. Having more time dedicated providing a better shopping experience is important to us. We’ll be working on product videos and demonstrations to get the most out of everything you use. We’ll also be producing more lifestyle and behind the scenes content.

UPGRADED DISTRIBUTOR PROGRAM: Technology has changed the way the we shop and the same can be said for the way that we sell products. Over the next few months, we’ll be working on a new and improved Distributor Program with the goal of having larger direction distribution in our region, as well as in all 50 states.

NEW EMPLOYEES: We’ve been a 2-person operation from the beginning, but we can’t do everything alone. We’re happy to be adding our first employee, the first of many we hope, later this year. And we’re proud to say we’ll be paying a liveable wage, disproving the myth that doing so will somehow crumble the economy. In order to build our company to the level that we know it can be, it’s vital to have a strong team around us. And you can expect to have a strong team if they are focused on paying the rent or keeping food on the table.

CUSTOMER REVIEWS: Shopping online can be difficult, especially if you are unfamiliar with a brand or product. We’ve always prided ourselves on our fantastic customer reviews (Now Over 2,000+ 5-Star) and take note anytime we miss the mark. New customers rely on the testimonials of previous customers to help make purchasing decisions. With that we’re glad to say we’re making leaving a review more valuable than ever. Beginning in April, every review left will enter you for a chance to win a $50.00 OverSoyed Gift Card in our monthly customer giveaway. All reviews left so far during 2021 will be added to our first drawing.

FREE PRODUCTS & BETTER SAMPLES: We love our coupons and our customers do, too! If you’ve placed an order in the past month, you may have noticed we’ve rolled out our new coupons for 2021. Better deals and more chances to receive FREE products. That’s right, we’ve increased the amount of free product offers in our Customer Loyalty bags. We’ve also been working diligently to get our sample racks full for Spring. New samples not offered before in fabulous fragrances you’ll fall in love with...

BETTA THAN FRAGRANCES RETURNING: After an extremely long and drawn out threat of corporate legal threats from Bath & Body Works, we made the decision to remove all of our name brand version fragrances from the website. After losing our Etsy storefront because of a similar threat, it simply isn’t worth the hassle, despite being in our rights to identify fragrances as we did. We’re in the process of renaming these 700+ fragrances and hope to have them back on the website in the next month or two, along with dozens of new fragrances available for the first time.

For the latest product releases and news, make sure you are following our social media pages and our website blog. As always, we appreciate your patronage and look forward to providing you fantastic products for years to come!

1 comment

Pamela Salinas

Pamela Salinas

Thanks for the update. It is uplifting to hear you are doing well. Your products are simply great.

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