Melissa Dumaz is a licensed marriage and family therapist in a private practice in Torrance, CA. Her business is called “U Help You,” where she strongly believes that we all have the capacity to heal and get from point A to point B; we just sometimes need someone to help us discover and use the tools that are within us.
She originally began her Private Practice in 2010 and then took a break once she became pregnant with her first son in 2012. She focused on motherhood with her three children for 5 years. In 2017 she relaunched her private practice where she saw clients for counseling sessions, speaking engagements, and provide consultations. She predominately works with women that are processing and healing from past and recent traumas and grief & loss. She also works with moms and moms-to-be on supporting their motherhood journey and finding a balance between who they are as women and mothers. She is passionate about helping others to live their best life, Her goal for her business is to reach more women by way of individual sessions, group therapy, support groups, speaking platforms, and book releases.
We recently caught up with Melissa to talk about her company and her entrepreneurial journey and here’s what went down:
Could you please tell our readers a brief background about yourself and how you started your business?
I’m a licensed marriage and family therapist in a private practice in Torrance, CA. My business is called U Help You, where I strongly believe that we have the capacity to heal and get from point A to point B; we just sometimes need someone to help us discover and use the tools that are within us. We are the expert of us and one of the strongest things we can do is to ask for help when we need it.
In 2017 I relaunched my Private Practice where I see clients for counseling sessions, speaking engagements, and provide consultations. I predominately work with women that are processing and healing from past and recent traumas and grief & loss. I also work with moms and moms-to-be on supporting their motherhood journey and finding a balance between who they are as women and mothers. I am passionate about helping others to live their best life!
Can you describe your journey to success? When did you start?
I originally began my private practice in 2010 and then took a break once I became pregnant with my first son in 2012. I focused on motherhood with my three children for 5 years.
What is your main source of income?
My main source of income is through private clients, speaking engagements, and therapy groups.
What are you currently doing to maintain/grow your business?
Marketing and building relationships with other professionals in my field. My goal for my business is to reach more women by way of individual sessions, group therapy, support groups, speaking platforms, and book releases. My business is still considered a small business, however, it is growing. I want others to know that their goals and business visions can come to life with dedication, discipline, belief, and a positive attitude. I especially want moms to know that their life as women continue after we birth our children and that if we decide to we can return to the workforce and even be our own boss.
What social media platforms do you usually use to increase your brand’s awareness?
I use Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
What is your experience with paid advertising, like PPC or sponsored content campaigns? Does it work?
I use it periodically and have a monthly budget for it. I believe it works, but it’s all in the timing.
What is your main tactic when it comes to making more people aware of your brand and engaging your customers? How did your business stand out?
I use social media marketing and speaking engagements.
What form of marketing has worked well for your business throughout the years?
Online Therapy directories.
How did your brand stand out from the rest of the other brands out there that is similar to your niche?
I promote therapy as a form of self-care and as a rams of exerting strength by seeking help.
What is the toughest decision you had to make in the last few months?
How much to include in my marketing budget and where to spend my marketing dollars.
What money mistakes have you made along the way that others can learn from (or something you’d do differently)?
I would focus on a specific niche and areas specific to your exact clientele instead of grabbing everything that comes your way just for the money.
What have you learned in the process of becoming wealthy that others can learn from?
Always remember your why and stick to that. Be honest, keep customer service first, and build the dream that was placed in your heart and the money will flow from that.
What new business would you love to start?
A Wellness Center that encompasses mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being.
If you could go back in a time machine to the time when you were just getting started, what would you do differently?
I would put more focus on my individual clients and not on contracts with mental health agencies and I would have invested earlier in my niche market.
If you could go back in a time machine to the time when you were first making a name for yourself, what advice would you give yourself?
I would encourage myself to be clear in my message and my vision.
Do you have any favorite business-related or personal development related books that you can recommend to other entrepreneurs?
The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
The Gentlewoman by Enitan Bereola
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by David Covey
The Power of the Now by Eckart Toole
The Millionaire Mind
Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey
What is the best advice you have ever been given?
I was reminded that I am building a business. Yes, I’m a therapist, but my Private Practice is a business.
What advice would you give to a newbie Entrepreneur setting up their first business?
Brainstorm the type of business you want to have, what are your business goals, and then build from that. The foundation of your business, just as the foundation of your house is what you want to build upon. Being an entrepreneur comes with a new level of responsibility, however, it also comes with a new level of freedom that is priceless.