Tuesday, December 16, 2014

#ThankYouMiami for (Holiday) Fashion

The holidays are here and, like every season, we're here to celebrate it as only Miami-ans do. This year we're advocating for outfits that are feminine, classy, but call upon South Beach's sex appeal. In our latest #ThankYouMiami for Fashion post, we show you how to ace these seemingly contradictory concepts in one look. Read the excerpt below and click on the photo for the full feature!


Do you have your holiday outfits ready? What outfits are you most excited to wear? What is your go-to Miami spot to buy holiday outfits? Leave a comment below or send us a tweet @ThankYouMiami!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

#ThankYouMiami for A Virtual Miami - FlipKey Virtual Tour

 

Have you ever tried to verbally convey the beauty of our city to your friends and family? No matter how detailed your description, we bet you still felt that your words did not do Miami justice. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. And, if that's true, then a virtual tour must be worth a million. That is why we are excited to announce that Miami is a city now within virtual grasp.


The free virtual tour is the brainchild of FlipKey, a TripAdvisor company that makes it "easy, safe, and fun to find and book the perfect place to stay." Using Google's Street View technology, the tour takes you from Marlins Park in Little Havana to Lincoln Road Mall in South Beach - taking the time to showcase its route as much as its six stops. The online resource also includes a brief description of each attraction and allows users to search for nearby rentals. So this Miami tourism season, when you struggle to describe our city to your prospective guests or to plan an itinerary for your visitors, FlipKey's got you covered.

Click on the image below to be redirected to FlipKey's virtual tour of Miami. Don't forget to check in next Friday for more Miami travel tips!


What is your favorite tourist attraction in Miami?
Is there a place you would have liked to see on the tour? What is your go-to resource for showing off our beautiful city? Is there a guide or list of attractions that you would like to see? Leave a comment below or send us a tweet @ThankYouMiami!

Friday, December 12, 2014

#ThankYouMiami for Our Growing Start-Up Scene - Part 4: Ethan and Jonathan Denney

Welcome to Part 4 of our 4-part series, "#ThankYouMiami for our Growing Start-Up Scene", where we recount our conversations with Miami entrepreneurs about what Miami is doing right for its entrepreneurial movement, where there is room for improvement, and why they each say #ThankYouMiami. Today we share with you a summary of our interview with Ethan and Jonathan Denney of Webpresario. Access the rest of the series here: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.


The Start-Up
Ethan and Jonathan Denney are the co-founders of Webpresario, a boutique digital marketing agency that specializes in generating more leads for small and medium businesses using conversion-focused web design and other data-driven marketing tools. Running a business is second nature to these brothers who grew up involved in a company started by their family. When the company scaled up, Ethan and Jonathan moved to New York and were exposed to the local entrepreneurial movement. The New York start-up scene opened their eyes to a world of possibilities, but a more laidback culture and an existing network of family and friends drew them back to our beautiful city where, in June 2012, they launched Webpresario.

The Miami Benefits and Challenges
The Denney brothers praise Miami for celebrating entrepreneurship. The Miami start-up scene is young so everything seems new and exciting, unlike New York where novel ideas no longer seem as novel. Despite offering a more experienced crowd than Miami, New York can be a discouraging place for new entrepreneurs because, in Ethan and Jonathan's opinion, the scene tends to be more dismissive. As the Miami scene grows, they encourage it to continue being receptive to new ideas and encouraging innovation because "entrepreneurship is about the journey, the team, the talent rather than a particular idea."

Ethan and Jonathan are Miami people that love the adventurous and exciting lifestyle the city offers. Like us, they are particularly fans of the fact that life does not slow down at 9 p.m. like in other cities. They also like that the start-up scene is still growing so it is easier for entrepreneurs to meet key people (i.e., investors, mentors) and to receive community support. However, they acknowledge that meeting talent here is difficult because they have not found an avenue that connects them all. Their secret is to work at places where the coffee and internet are great, such as Pasion Del Cielo, because they become meeting points for entrepreneurs. Pasion Del Cielo is actually where they connected with Zach Grossman from EnerBee, the subject of yesterday's interview.

Ethan and Jonathan would like to see more and varied entrepreneurial events so they can connect with new talent. Past events have drawn many of the same players, which has allowed them to form long-standing relationships but has limited their ability to make new ones. They would like the scene to focus on drawing talent not attracted by those events. Additionally, they recommend attracting individuals that are looking to enter the scene or the workforce to offer growing businesses an opportunity to meet new talent they can employ.

The #ThankYouMiami Statement
Ethan and Jonathan Denney have moved many times, but they always return to the city they call home base: Miami. So, for what are these charismatic and hard-working locals grateful? Jonathan says, "#ThankYouMiami for the awesome weather because it has a positive impact on community morale and ultimately on businesses." Ethan says, "#ThankYouMiami for providing a great city to live in and work in, to play hard and work hard."

Are you a part of the Miami entrepreneurial movement? What do you think Miami is doing right to support its future growth? Where do you see room for improvement? Which local entrepreneurs would you like to see give their opinion on this subject? Leave a comment below or send us a tweet @ThankYouMiami!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

#ThankYouMiami for Our Growing Start-Up Scene - Part 3: Zach Grossman

Welcome to Part 3 of our 4-part series, "#ThankYouMiami for Our Growing Start-Up Scene", where we recount our conversations with Miami entrepreneurs about what Miami is doing right for its entrepreneurial movement, where there is room for improvement, and why they each say #ThankYouMiami. Today, we share with you a summary of our interview with Zach Grossman from EnerBee. Access the rest of the series here: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 4.


The Start-Up
Zach Grossman is a co-founder of EnerBee, a company that produces an organic, lightly-carbonated energy drink that contributes to the protection of the honeybee. Zach always knew he wanted to be an entrepreneur and received a degree in Entrepreneurship and Marketing from Northeastern University. Post-graduation, he channeled his background as a certified personal trainer and began working on a variety of health and fitness ideas. When a family friend approached him with the idea for EnerBee, he knew he had found the perfect concept on which to focus his talents.

Since they launched in June 2014, Zach and his business partner Paul have been diligently working toward expanding the reach of their product, which you can now purchase on their website or at Whole Foods Markets throughout Florida. They are passionate and excited about the future of their company and the positive impact they hope it will have on "nature's most energetic worker", the honeybee. They understand that honeybees are not only vital to their product (the formula contains organic honey, bee pollen and royal jelly), but also to the entire food chain. Their collapse is a scenario that Zach's company and the human race cannot afford. Learn more about the honeybee here.

The Miami Benefits and Challenges
Zach is a Miami native that left to pursue his college degree but, thanks to the cold, came to his senses and returned after graduation. He and Paul decided to launch EnerBee in Miami because they grew up here and were familiar with the area. With their insider knowledge, they already knew which stores were ideal for retailing their product. They were also drawn to Miami because it is a health conscious community in terms of diet and fitness. After all, staying bikini ready year-round is no easy task.

Although many people recommended that they launch in California, they chose to be a big fish in a small pond. Comparatively, Miami has a smaller number of companies that sell all-natural and organic products and a smaller number of entrepreneurial ventures. For these reasons, Miami allows new companies like EnerBee the opportunity to stand out rather than get lost in the crowd. Furthermore, they have the support of the local community which likes that the company was founded by two of their own.

Miami has thus far proved to be the perfect place for EnerBee. Miami's diversity has been great for obtaining product feedback. Its international appeal also makes money from the international community available to our local entrepreneurs. However, Zach acknowledges that we also have some challenges - traffic is his primary concern. Since the company has only two full-time employees at this time, he and Paul are the brains behind the operation, as well as the work force. When they make product deliveries, they have learned to be productive by scheduling phone calls or having meetings in the car so they do not lose valuable work time in traffic.

The #ThankYouMiami Statement
Everyone Zach has met in Miami, from bloggers to local store owners, has been extremely helpful and supportive. So for what is this socially-conscious entrepreneur most grateful? "#ThankYouMiami for being supportive of local entrepreneurs and for being such an incredibly diverse and exciting city that is doing a great job at growing the entrepreneurial community!"

Are you a part of the Miami entrepreneurial movement? What do you think Miami is doing right to support its future growth? Where do you see room for improvement? Which local entrepreneurs would you like to see give their opinion on this subject? Leave a comment below or send us a tweet @ThankYouMiami!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

#ThankYouMiami for Our Growing Start-Up Series - Part 2: Lucy Rodriguez

Welcome to Part 2 of our 4-part series, "#ThankYouMiami for Our Growing Start-Up Scene", where we recount our conversations with Miami entrepreneurs about what Miami is doing right for its entrepreneurial movement, where there is room for improvement, and why they each say #ThankYouMiami. Today, we share with you a summary of our interview with Lucy Rodriguez from LRBrows.com. Access the rest of the series here: Part 1, Part 3, and Part 4.


The Start-Up
Lucy Rodriguez is the founder of LRBrows.com, a company through which she has offered top notch eyebrow shaping, tinting, and transformation services for over 10 years. Growing up, Lucy studied nursing and gravitated toward work in dermatology where she gained experience in cosmetic procedures and learned about the intricacies of tailoring beauty services to bone structure. When she left the medical field, Lucy tapped her dermatological know-how to develop a signature brow shaping method that is based on each client's facial structure.

Lucy is currently based at Hair by Hisham in Coconut Grove and is available for hire for photo shoots, weddings, and other special events. Most recently, Lucy expanded her company's services to include the production of a 100-percent natural nightly nourishing treatment that adds length and volume to brows and lashes called Enhance Brow Oil. The brow oil, which she developed in collaboration with a University of Miami chemist, is available for purchase on her website and at select Miami boutiques, salons, and doctor's offices.

The Miami Benefits and Challenges
Lucy is a Miami native that hails from the up-and-coming South Miami neighborhood and lives in Brickell. She decided to start her business here because it is home base for her family. Additionally, Lucy recognizes that the city has a stable beauty market due to the community's emphasis on beauty and its reputation for having beautiful people. Through LRBrows.com, Lucy is working to make a positive impact on the community and to enhance Miami's existing beauty.

Despite these benefits, Miami does pose some obstacles for Lucy's growing business. The city's fast-paced lifestyle is matched by local's expectations for instant gratification. This reality is a particular challenge in the success of her brow oil which produces fabulous results but cannot provide them as quickly as non-homeopathic counterparts. Additionally, as with all communities, there is a percentage of the population that doubts the efficacy of all-natural products. Lucy has faith that, in time, the public will recognize the benefits of using a non-chemical formula to grow healthy brow and lashes. For the forseeable future, she plans to continue to grace Miami with her brow savvy here in our sunny shores.

The #ThankYouMiami Statement
Lucy's father left Cuba for Miami at the age of 13 without knowing a lick of English. Here he managed to successfully grow four companies with the support of the local community. Lucy looks forward to seizing the same opportunity with LRBrows.com. For what is Miami's "brow ninja" most grateful? "#ThankYouMiami for giving everyone, including minorities, an opportunity to grow and live the American dream."

Are you a part of the Miami entrepreneurial movement? What do you think Miami is doing right to support its future growth? Where do you see room for improvement? Which local entrepreneurs would you like to see give their opinion on this subject? Leave a comment below or send us a tweet @ThankYouMiami!