Business reimagined: How 5 small businesses changed their product offering

May 15, 2020
5 minutes read

On our second edition of “Small Business, Big Pivots”, we’re taking a look at a few of the businesses who have made the bold move of altering their business model and products so they can stay strong throughout this crisis.


The president of alcoholic-beverage company Buzzballz decided to start making hand sanitizer, like many breweries, wineries, and distilleries have done in response to COVID-19. At first, they donated the sanitizer to local hospitals and pathology labs. Soon, fire departments, police departments, airlines, the city of Carrollton, and even the Air Force and the Army started requesting the sanitizer.

Here’s the catch: in the U.S., the government isn’t allowed to take freebies. So Merrilee found herself with a business model that should be able to sustain itself through the duration of the pandemic.


Similarly to Buzzballz, Ripshot, who originally produced individually packaged alcoholic shots, has reimagined their business model in the wake of COVID-19 to producing hand-sanitizer for hospitals, shelters and those in need across Canada.

Watch below as their CEO, Sarah, shares the story on their pivot.

T3 Expo

Small events company T3 Expo has also landed itself in a position to contribute to the cause. While the COVID-19 pandemic has virtually eliminated the events industry altogether, this small business had other plans.

Specializing in trade shows and events at the Javits Center in New York City, T3 Expo had a unique opportunity to help as the city transformed the space into a makeshift hospital to support the influx of patients.

Knowing the layout and already in possession of the building materials required to build beds and signs, T3 Expo worked with the state of New York, the Army Corp of Engineers, FEMA, the governor, and the Unions to turn the project around in just three days.

With the help of our partners @GilmanBrothers we have been able to produce over 1400 temporary beds for makeshift hospitals. Read our latest blog to find out more!

— T3 Expo (@T3Expo) April 27, 2020

Color Me Mine & Bookshop Santa Cruz

As daily lives change, so does consumer behavior. People are buying leisurewear instead of cocktail dresses, at-home spa kits instead of massages. As such, small businesses are stepping up to create new product and service offerings to meet the needs of consumers in our current climate.

In Freehold, NJ, Color Me Mine is offering to-go kits for at-home projects. Similarly in California, Bookshop Santa Cruz has “take care” packages complete with a book and pencils, sticker, stuffed animal, or other bundled product.

We want to hear from you!

Has your business changed its business model? Let us know! Send an email to with information on how your business has pivoted for a chance to be featured in a Wave blog!

By Alexandra Sheehan

The information and tips shared on this blog are meant to be used as learning and personal development tools as you launch, run and grow your business. While a good place to start, these articles should not take the place of personalized advice from professionals. As our lawyers would say: “All content on Wave’s blog is intended for informational purposes only. It should not be considered legal or financial advice.” Additionally, Wave is the legal copyright holder of all materials on the blog, and others cannot re-use or publish it without our written consent.

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