Facing ever-increasing demands and a constant battle to balance a full-time career and personal life, this young entrepreneur decided her future lay in putting her unique twist on date night ideas. She’s pouring her passion into helping couples keep their relationships flourishing – and creating a thriving business.
Ruta Drungilaite, originally from Lithuania and now residing in bustling London and her boyfriend, Jacques, launched A Twist Of Date – an online innovative business with a story that encapsulates entrepreneurship, resilience, and creativity.
She’s a shining example of the new generation of entrepreneurs, transforming the challenges of the pandemic, economy and cost of living into new opportunities.
Ruta’s journey began in the challenging times of lockdown when restrictions left her and her boyfriend struggling to come up with engaging date night activities at home.
She recognized the shared dilemma of couples who, while desiring exciting date nights at home, often resorted to the familiarity of movies and dinners. It was here the seeds for A Twist Of Date were thought up, aimed at offering couples a new way to bond and connect from the comfort of their homes.
Ruta’s original idea was to create date night boxes filled with everything needed for a romantic evening at home. The concept was a hit initially, with couples raving about these thoughtful boxes, complete with playlists, cocktail-making tools, pottery workshops, deep conversation starters, and more. However, there was a catch: Ruta was handcrafting these boxes, and the profit margins were razor-thin. She even sold her cocktail boxes at a loss.
Seeing that her venture – in that format – wasn’t sustainable was a setback, but it didn’t dishearten Ruta in her drive for success. She knew she had lightning in a bottle, she just had to find a better way to sell it and switched to a digital-first approach.
“There’s no magic or secret here – trying to run and scale my small business while working in a very demanding day job has honestly been very tough,” says Ruta.
“I try to work on my business as much as I can on the evenings and weekends. But after a full day of firefighting at my day job, I do often feel emotionally and physically depleted, so it’s not always possible to work as much as I’d like to on my business that I love.
“Being in my twenties, there’s a constant mental push and pull and conflict in my head – should I focus on building my business? Should I go all in on furthering my career? What if I miss out on all the fun that my twenties is meant to be, because I’m working so much?”
Seeing her innovative approach really connect with couples and find its audience has kept Ruta moving forward. For a young entrepreneur, it’s passion to be able to do something she loves that makes it all possible.
“In the early days, I made hundreds of videos that barely anyone watched; I’ve written blogs that no one read; I’ve paid for months of Google ads that yielded no sales; I’ve spent hours crafting marketing emails that no one opened; I’ve worked with dozens of content creators who didn’t deliver any content and I’ve hired website developers who completely messed up my site despite their 5 star reviews – but I’ve learned, fast.”
21 months on, Ruta now has a range of hit digital products, including romantic board games, cold case files, escape rooms, and conversation starters. The transition to the digital download model marked a major turning point, and A Twist Of Date began to take off in earnest. It has transformed into a global brand with 3.5k orders from 73 different countries – and she has plans for further growth.
One of her most remarkable successes has been her social media marketing efforts, particularly on TikTok, where she has amassed over 250k authentic followers and viral videos with millions of views. Beyond the numbers, the most meaningful triumphs for Ruta lie in the heartfelt customer reviews. Couples have shared stories of emotional reconnection after having a baby, discovering new facets of each other after 18 years together, and revitalizing their relationships.
She admits: “It would be an absolute dream come true to work on this business full time, so I’m committed to persevering, trying, failing, growing and finding a way to make it a success.”