Marin SBDCSan Rafael, CA

“Because of the SBDC’s unwavering support, direction, and enthusiasm for us and our business, we were able to get clear, stay focused, and follow through on the necessary actions that brought our business to the next level of success. We are extremely grateful for this gift and highly recommend the SBDC to any business owner who would like to do the same.” 

Richard & Lorraine Platt

Teen Solutions is a psychotherapy practice that specializes in counseling teens and families in Marin. It was started in 2005 by Richard and Lorraine Platt who are Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists in Mill Valley. They teach families how to communicate more effectively and coach parents to provide safety and direction to their adolescent. Richard Platt mentors boys and young men while Lorraine Platt mentors girls and young women to develop into healthy adults.

When Richard and Lorraine started working with their SBDC Business Advisor in January 2011, they needed administrative help since they were serving their clients directly and working on the business as well. This included: marketing, web design, and accounting, to name a few. Another challenge was learning how to reach their ideal clients so they could serve their desired population and increase their revenue, which decreased in 2009 & 2010.

The SBDC helped Richard and Lorraine create an annual business plan to clarify their goals and financial projections. They established the strategies for increasing revenue and reaching their ideal clients with the SBDC’s support and direction. They developed new marketing materials and hired someone through Elance to update their web site after receiving an extensive web site audit from the SBDC. They made most of the changes suggested to their web site. The web site was enhanced to build credibility and trust with visitors in order to improve the number of phone calls from parents. They also hired an expert from Trumpet Local Media to optimize their web site so Marin families could easily find them. Finally, they hired a videographer to film a video for the Home Page of their web site,

Through hiring the extra help they needed and focusing on their marketing strategies, Richard and Lorraine increased the revenue of Teen Solutions by 41 percent. Because they received the behind-the-scenes support they required to succeed, they were able to focus solely on serving their clients. Richard started his Young Men’s Team again and Lorraine led Girl’s Circles at a local private school. Both Richard and Lorraine volunteered for Challenge Day at Mill Valley Middle School so they could give back to their community and connect with teens and other mentors. As a direct result of their work with the SBDC, they significantly increased their revenue and made a greater contribution.

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Funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA or HSU Sponsored Programs Foundation.