This could be the difference between the success or failure of your business

I guess it’s just the allure of  new experiences that intrigues me the most.

I mean, no matter what you do that day , you’ll be experiencing something new. And for some reason I truly believe that creating new memories is what makes us feel most alive. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, surrounded by people you’ve never met before, eating new foods you never even knew existed.

It’s a way to force your body to be alert, to be in the moment, and to pay attention.

Because there are no habits that exist here, there are no routines here, and there’s nothing recognizable. It’s literally the excitement of the unknown that keeps me coming back for more.

And maybe it’s an addiction. My entire childhood was uprooted time and time again, moving from home to home across countries, miles and miles towards new corners of the world. I’ve never been locked to any once specific place. In fact, being anywhere for too long makes me antsy. On second thought, maybe it’s not an addiction, maybe it’s just that: boredom.  My psychic did tell me I get bored easily. Maybe she’s right.

Either way – I love it ….

…. I love to travel.


I mean, of course it has it’s downsides.Having to drag heavy suitcases from place to place, having to maneuver your way around, and getting over language and cultural barriers … but who cares? When I travel I feel alive.

It’s only been one month since I last experienced the joy of being somewhere totally new: Montreal.

We stayed with some very dear friends of ours, and were able to experience it at one of the most beautiful times of the year: the cusp between summer and autumn.

The leaves were just starting to fall and change color, and having not experienced the regular four seasons since moving to Tampa, it was a heart-wrenching reminder of what an inspirational time it used to be for me as a photographer when I was living in England only a few years back. Admiring those crimson leaves in Montreal was the nostalgic pain of a chapter now over and the sweet reminder that a new one had just begun. Life is funny like that, right?

Davids Tea

One day, as we were walking around the city of Montreal, we decided to stop off for tea at a cute little place called Les Thés Davids Tea. 

As I walked through the door of David’s Tea, I was mesmerized. There was tea everywhere, and as a tea-lover, it was magical. As I ordered my raspberry-infused tea, I noticed a cute little sign in French. Translated it read,

“Win the shopping spree of any tea lover’s dream!
Subscribe to our monthly newsletter and you could win a gift card of $250″

(Side note: I studied French for one year and was never good at it. My teacher always told me that I would pronounce words with a Spanish accent haha! The above translation was thanks to Google Translate)

Davids Tea

Reading this, the businesswoman within me was wide awake, noting and zooming in on every single detail for clues.

I’m so driven to know and understand as much as I possibly can about businesses and their success in relation to their brand, and every time I have any communication with companies I’m always on the lookout for how they do things in their business, and if there’s anything amazing that I can learn to implement into my own.

In this case, I was totally surprised to see that this Montreal tea shop was smart enough to be incentivizing their audience to get on their email list. And it made me feel so happy for this business because they’re doing something very right with this incentive to get their customers on their email list.

I don’t see other businesses doing this nearly as much as they should, and I know just how vital an email list and newsletter can be to the success of a business. 

At this point, I’m sure you can imagine what went through my brain next … “I have to share this with my audience so that they can make sure that they have email lists!”

Here’s the thing: Any smart business owner nowadays knows that your email list is one of the most important things you can have.

It can be the difference between success and failure. It is that important.

People start businesses, they create Facebook pages, they have a website … and they wonder why they make no sales.

One of the best and cheapest marketing tools in all of history? EMAIL!

So start a newsletter. Because it’s a simple way for you to communicate with your clients, allow them to build a trusting relationship with you, AND it gives you a direct line of contact to ask for the sale. BOOM.

And the truth is, it’s so much easier than you think! Don’t have one? Sign up here to get started!


As we left that lovely tea shop, I was reminded of the sweet new chapter of my life. A chapter where I get to share these brilliant lightning-bolt moments of branding and business brilliance with you.

WITH YOU. And you, my friend? You are the future. You are the dreamer, the believer. You are one of the crazy ones who not only has a dream, but is willing to stand up for it and claim it. You are here, put on this earth to shine. And as you shine and share your gifts with the world, if I can do anything to make the business side of things go smoother, I’m always more than happy to do it. If I can show you that business doesn’t have to be hard, sales doesn’t have to be icky, and that branding can be FUN, I feel as though you’ll be able to turn that passion of yours into something that shows you that being successful and rich and brilliant is what you are here for. You are here to be your best self, to succeed without ever feeling guilty for it and without ever feeling as though you don’t deserve it. Because you do.

And that, my friend, is the best job in the world. I get to share my passion with you, and I don’t do it nearly as much as I want to, because, well, this transition from being passionate for photography to being passionate about business? It’s been a scary one. But today I’m embracing it, full forced, with my story of my trip to the small tea shop in Montreal.

Who knows where I’ll travel to next? I know I’m going to England for Christmas, and Trinidad for Carnival, but I’ve been to both of those place before so technically it doesn’t count as somewhere brand new. Maybe I should start planning my trip to the next brand new place. Any suggestions? I shared an awesome link on my personal Facebook page of 27 Surreal Places to Visit Before You Die … they just make me want to travel, travel, travel.

Honestly though, if it were up to me, I’d be flying my mom and I out to India.

I don’t know why, but this has been a dream of mine for a while now. For some reason I feel like it’s meant to be, what do you say? Should I add India with my mom to my to-do list? I think so! 🙂


Before you rush off – take a moment to leave a comment and let me know these 3 things:

1) Where was the last place you visited that you had never been to before?
2) Where is the one place that you REALLY want to go to, but haven’t been yet?
3) Do you have a newsletter for your business, and if not – are you going to add it to your to-do list this week?


I can not wait to hear from you in the comment section! 😀

With love and hugs,


7 thoughts on “This could be the difference between the success or failure of your business”

  1. 1) I last went to Chicago — what a fantastic city!
    2) I’m itching to go to Sweden to visit my brother and his sweet Swedish girlfriend
    3) I have the skeleton of a newsletter and have been meaning to build my list and send one out regularly. This post convinced me to do so!
    4) Alex, you were two blocks from my montreal apartment at that David’s Tea. I went there every weekend as I’m obsessed with that store. Their newsletter is great, but even more so their whole customer experience is incredible. They’re actually my customer experience role model!

  2. Alex, I appreciate your passionate writing and drive so much. I relate to it so much and it just makes me glow knowing there are other people who want to inspire others too.

    1) I will be going to Dubai in Janurary (my first time out of the US!) I am so excited to be going and working with students from a university to come back a develop a few projects.
    2) I REALLLY want to go to Australia!!
    3) I do not have a newsletter, and I don’t think I will be making one soon. I don’t even have my website up yet and I have had my domain name for a year in March- I am so excited to be pushing forward in this aspect of my life.

  3. At the beginning of November I sent out a newsletter to some people and got only 1 response. 🙁 Maybe, better than nothing, I do not know.
    My last place I visited was Las Vegas, it was incredible and I love the city. I have to visit LV again! But, there are so many other places I would love to go to e. g. Australia, South Africa, Boston, San Francisco … but the one I really have to is Cornwall. This is nothing very big, but I want to go there since some years.
    Big hugs

  4. I actually read this when I was in Vancouver- in Canada for the first time! And visiting Seattle to see if I want to maybe moveeee there, so it’s pretty exciting! Yay new things.
    No newsletter, although I have a helluva email list. What the heck do I put in a newsletter?

  5. Lovely blog post Alex….and I love how visiting a tea shop can inspire so much.

    I do have a newsletter which I have recently started and I am focused on growing my email database as I know that is where the gold is. I need to be patient though but not tooooo patient!

    The last place I visited was Bergen in Norway and it was the most amazing place. We went on a trip to the fjords which was absolutely breathtaking – thoroughly recommend it!

    There are so many places I would love to visit, from Italy to Australia to New Zealand. I would also love to do a road trip on the East Coast of USA heading up to Canada.

    Enjoy your time back in the UK x

  6. Hey Alex,

    Really impressed by what your doing. I’m starting a company of my own. And its good to know we have the same thought process, and similar reasons to build something we can call ours.

    I really hope this website lifts off and your brand reaches the heights you want.

    We met almost 7 years ago now. You will probably never remember me…there was a moment that lasted 5 seconds where we were fascinated with each other, just by who we are. Its a special moment when you meet someone new and feel amazing to get to know someone. We barely spoke after, but that’s not important. The important thing is that you are blossoming into the type of woman that other people can take heart from.

    Inspiring the uninspired is a beautiful gift that warms the soul and leaves you contented with your place in the world.

    Spread the word!

  7. I gave up on Rosetta Stone because I always pronounce my French words with a Spanish accent too, ha! Glad I’m not the only one.

    Not quite visiting, but I moved to NYC without ever having been here before and I LOVE it. ^_^

    I would love, love, love to visit Australia someday. No specific reason why, I guess it’s kinda like how you feel about India.

    And I do have an email list but I only just started actively sending out emails after months of nothing, oops.

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