First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Mary Palmieri: We are healthy and well, thank you for asking, which says a lot these days. If there is one thing this pandemic made me appreciate at the end of the day, it is my health and wellbeing – health is wealth!
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded TBM.
Mary Palmieri: I began my career in NYC, working as an intern in the fashion closet of Vogue magazine. I learned about the beauty industry while producing one of the largest beauty product development trade shows – The HBA Global Expo in 2008. At HBA, I discovered the indie beauty market and created one of the industry’s first blogs to provide a platform for independent brands to tell their story. Because this was before the explosion of social media and direct to consumer marketing, from here, we would help the independent brands we would write about develop their digital marketing, web, and online distribution strategies.
In 2016, while in grad school, while studying the business models of Netflix and Pandora, I decided to develop a beauty recommendation commerce platform that solves the problem of all the overwhelmed consumers who would write to me as a blogger asking me what products to use and – The Beauty Marketplace was born.
TBM’s propriety Beauty Matchmaker algorithm and Image Capture Technology takes a data-driven approach to simplify the tedious process of defining and maintaining a beauty routine. We are now licensing our software to help other brands build a personalized marketplace or online shopping experience.
How does TBM innovate?
Mary Palmieri: The Beauty Marketplace is the world’s first AI-driven personalized marketplace business model that matches brands and consumers to simplify the tedious process of defining and maintaining a beauty routine. We are industry leaders in image capture technology. Users who come onto our platform submit a selfie from which we can extract up to 53 beauty characteristics we use to connect them to the products on our platform.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Mary Palmieri: The coronavirus pandemic has contributed to our online consumer marketplace’s growth because more consumers are shopping and discovering products and information online while bored at home. The B2B tech solution side of our business sees brands and retailers needing help with cost-effectively operating and maintaining business operations vs. investing in new technology. A great deal of exploratory conversations pertaining to e-commerce/marketplace business models has increased because companies want to mitigate the impact COVID has had on not being about to shop in retail brick and mortar stores.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Mary Palmieri: I learn the lesson of resilience daily! Once the pandemic hit, we lost a great deal of income and traction on the B2B solution side of the business that has even had me questioned whether or not I should keep going as an entrepreneur, but you just have to keep going even when this requires a little bit of faith!
How do you deal with stress and anxiety? How do you project yourself and TBM in the future?
Mary Palmieri: I stay active and practice yoga and mindful meditation to keep me out of my head/fears and focused on what needs to be executed in the present. My team and Advisors have been a great support system and have helped strategize what’s next and define benchmarks for success. In the future, I see us partnering with a major beauty brand or retailer as their marketplace/personalization partners.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Mary Palmieri: On the B2C side of the business, Amazon and any online retailers sell beauty products. On the B2B side of the business, any marketplace solution provider, but we compete on personalization. Think of TBM as the Shopify for Personalized Marketplaces. We will stay in the game by strengthening partnerships and remain technologically innovative.
Your final thoughts?
Mary Palmieri: The greatest innovations come out of the most challenging situations and times, and I am optimistic about all the solutions that will come from this pandemic. TBM is making it easier to have beauty in this world and help people stay happy and feel good while assisting entrepreneurs in succeeding. We all need to collaborate and help one another to navigate this time in history successfully and positively! Let’s find ways to be more giving, stay positive, and lift one another!
TBM helps companies develop next-level personalized online shopping experiences using industry-leading technology. Want to collaborate on developing personalized and marketplace/e-commerce solutions? Email: [email protected]