Alright – so today we’ve got the honor of introducing you to Mary Marroquin. We think you’ll enjoy our conversation, we’ve shared it below.
Alright, Mary thanks for taking the time to share your stories and insights with us today. What’s been the best thing you’ve ever seen (or done yourself) to show a customer that you appreciate them?
My focus is on my client. I want them to look and feel beautiful. I want them to have an amazing experience – that is my goal. I really work to get to know my clients. If they are going through a tough time, I try to find something to help brighten up their day. Sometimes, I just do things to make them smile. For example, last week I bought two dozen roses and gave them to everyone who came in. Also, If clients need a special time to get in for a last minute event – I will do everything in my power to make it convenient for them. Also recently, I also rolled out my first monthly Mother/Daughter Day event. It was a free drawing on social media to honor a hard working mom. This treat allows them to spend some quality relaxation time together while they have their lashes and spray tans done. Things like this are ways I like to show my clients I appreciate them.
Great, appreciate you sharing that with us. Before we ask you to share more of your insights, can you take a moment to introduce yourself and how you got to where you are today to our readers?
Making people look and feel gorgeous has always been my dream! I began my career in the beauty industry after high school. After going through training and working for other salons for a while, I wanted more so I started doing hair and makeup as a side hustle. My first job was at a Medspa, where I fell in love with learning about this industry. I took every training I could about pharmaceutical-grade skincare, body waxing, spray tanning, and eyelash extensions just to name a few! It has taken me 10 years to build Urban Blend Tanning and I’m not done yet!!
Urban Blend Tanning is the premier sunless tanning salon in Tampa. The Sun’s UV rays damage your skin, with Urban Blend tanning you’ll get sun-kissed glowing skin without setting foot in the sun. We specialize in custom airbrush tanning! We also carry a line of self-tanners from lotions to foam for all your at-home needs. We know that no matter the occasion, it’s never one size fits all. We have an array of solutions, additives, even free disposable undergarments on hand to ensure our clients are happy with their desired look! We also have red light therapy and eyelash extensions to help you accentuate the gorgeous tan you will get at Urban Blend Tanning.
I am most proud of my building my clientele, and how far I have come. Of course, I’m always accepting new clients, but the majority of my clientele have been with me since the beginning. They have seen me grow and bring this dream into reality. I couldn’t do it without them, and my family and friends, of course! This is why I am always giving back to my clients, it feels like they are more than just clients – they are family.
Can you open up about how you funded your business?
I started my salon with $5,000 out of my own pocket. I offset some of the cost of having family and friends help – especially my husband! I’ve called on them to help me assemble machines, hang TVs, build my reception desk, and paint walls! And I love each and everyone of them for helping me. Every time I look around I can feel the love and support. Also, in the very beginning, when I needed salon chairs, shampoo bowls, lights, and all the little things I shopped around online and found the best prices. Since then, I have slowly upgraded and added to the salon. I am very thankful for my family and my loyal clientele who have been with me since the beginning and have helped me grow. So in a way their love and appreciation has been the main source of capital.
What do you think helped you build your reputation within your market?
Customer service hands-down. I love making people look and feel beautiful. That’s what I live to do! I have worked very hard on my skills to be able to provide an amazing service. And even though there are lots of salons and places out there offering similar services, I think what makes me stand out in the crowd above everyone else is definitely customer service. I have put a lot of work into building this business from the ground up, and I still have a lot more I want to do. But for me the bottom line is always being sure that my clients know I care and want them to feel safe, respected, and loved. That is all that really matters.