– The following advertorial was contributed by Dave Imber, vice president of CigarClub.com
As I write this I’m 32,000 feet in the air and en route to a few of our cigar partners in Miami. I’m again filled with wanderlust. It’s, excitingly, another experience to capture. This trip will consist of rich conversations with passionate cigar makers and become stories that I look forward to sharing with our CigarClub members.
I remember thinking early on in my cigar industry career how fascinating the people that make up this community are. Now, that very thought pushes me a step further to spend quality time with as many people in our industry as possible–socially distanced of course–while bringing our CigarClub Family along for the ride.
2020 looked different early on. I was traveling almost every week: Vegas, Miami, Nashville, Paris, Nicaragua – the first 2 months of the year were off to the races and the cigar industry was taking me on a trip around the world. While the “around the world” part has ceased, the experiences and relationships have deepened. I could tell you stories of the times I learned every step in the cigar making process. I could also tell you stories of learning every thing about a brand owner’s life: his story, his family, his passions, his joys, the vision he has for his business, and even his setbacks.
As an avid documentary photographer, I found it important to begin capturing these people and these moments. Shortly after, our team began designing a monthly editorial piece for our members as a means to share these experiences with them, a lot of whom were stuck at home.
At 20,000 Feet
You see – CigarClub exists to know our customers and share cigars with them that they will enjoy. It’s all about the discovery process: what do you eat and drink; what time of day do you smoke; what brands do you love? All of that information is used to determine what cigars we send each person every month.
It’s that same mindset we carry as a team throughout every aspect of our business. It’s our curiosity that took myself and our Co-Founder/CEO, Jeff Zeiders, to the mountains of Esteli, Nicaragua this past February. It’s our curiosity that led us to dip our feet in the pool of cigar blending. Curiosity is also what turns the majority of my “30 minute meetings” with a brand into an entire afternoon of conversation and great cigars.
We’ve been deliberate to launch programs at CigarClub this year that bring our members a richer experience: bi-monthly Zoom lounges with our team and cigar brand owners, our very own custom blended cigars [cigarclub.com/customs], YouTube Videos that share a behind the scenes look at this industry and most recently, in depth pairings [we even have our own Single Barrel Bourbon releasing this month with Few Spirits].
Even though we are an online company our goal will always be focused on becoming more human. To our members and our brands. Humans share. online companies ship. We do both.
At 10,000 Feet
I can see the beach-I can feel the vibrancy of this place where I grew up. I’m already excited to answer the questions we’ll get from our members after this trip: who did you work with? what did you blend? Did you use all Nicaraguan tobacco? What size will the cigar be? How long will it age?
Soon, all those questions [and more] will be answered. Then, those cigars we make will become available, sell out and be enjoyed by hundreds of people. Not-so-soon, will I forget this experience, these people – the stories they share with me about the tobacco – about them. That is what will carry throughout our club long after the cigars are gone – in blogs, videos, zoom lounges and editorial pieces – in phone calls with members when we kickback and talk cigars. That is what I will carry – our team will carry; it’s what we’ll share over and over again.
To us, becoming a successful brand takes more than simply a good product. It takes time: a listening ear, meaningful relationships and, of course, being human.