“We the Prosperous” – Meet Marian, a #GirlOnFire Sharing Her Love for Hip-Hop Through Her Own Business

Customer Stories, Self-Employed Screen Shot 2018-05-04 at 10.30.12 AM

Every Intuit customer has their own unique story. Along each of their journeys, they find passion, share advice, take risks, celebrate success, and form a community of their own.

From small business owners, to the self-employed and those simply seeking ways to be more financially savvy – we’re here to be a part of each story and champion our customers as they take steps forward on their path to prosperity. Hear how the power of many comes together to support the business of one with #WeTheProsperous.

Meet Marian, creator of the hip-hop playing card game known as University of Dope. She’s defining prosperity on her own terms, while sharing her love of hip-hop with the world through a thoughtful and universal card game experience.

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Intuit: Marian, tell us about your business!

Marian: I’ve been running my business for five years now. I used to debate everything hip-hop related with my college friend (and now business partner) A.V. Perkins, but could never find a game online. So I decided to create the University of Dope card game, which is the first card game ever dedicated to hip-hop. I sat down in my room with some friends and tried out the game – they loved it. So I created the product, and now it’s being sold worldwide!

Intuit: What do you wish someone had told you before you started your self-employed journey?

Marian: You would think it’s a given, but all of your free time disappears, and I didn’t realize just how much free time I was going to lose. My friends sometimes bring up the fact that they haven’t seen me in awhile. My leisure time has gone to the business. Although it doesn’t feel much like a burden – more like a hobby.

Intuit: What would you say was your main obstacle to becoming successful? How did you overcome it?

Marian: We finally realized we had a great product, but we also found that manufacturing the product was going to cost a lot of money. We had to borrow a huge chunk of money to get started. I was house-hunting at the time, and I remember putting a lot of my life on hold to focus on this business. Thankfully, it worked out.

Intuit: What’s been most surprising and challenging about your SE journey?

Marian: It’s tough to think about what opportunities to take and not to take. There’s also thinking about how to be cost effective, and how to spend time wisely.

Intuit: Who are you inspired by?

Marian: I am inspired by my mother. She has been through a lot, but always made sure to do everything she could to make sure her kids had everything they wanted. I have never seen someone work so hard. She used to be a teacher, and is now a nurse. She taught me to put 100% energy into everything I do.

Intuit: Does your mom play the game?

Marian: Yes she does! She’s an immigrant from Ghana and her favorite music genre is classical, but she loves playing the game, and she surprisingly knows some things about hip-hop.

Intuit: Starting a business and becoming self-employed isn’t easy; what has made the journey worth it to you?

Marian: It definitely has been the thousands of people that play the game, and tell me they love it. I ask for feedback about how to make the game better all the time, and I put 100% of my energy into this to make it right. My mom is very proud, and that makes me happy too.

Intuit: What drew you to Intuit’s products? How do you use them?

Marian: I have used TurboTax since I was about 16 or 17 years old, and use it every year to do my taxes. I hired an accountant, but I trust the software more than the accountant! I also began using QuickBooks when I started my business, because it’s super easy to use, and very simple.

Intuit: What are your prosperity hacks?

Marian: Self-care is very important to me. I meditate every morning, and plan out all the things that must get done. I usually write down five things that need to get done before I start my day. I keep my email incredibly organized, and set up my calendar to regularly remind me of what I need to be doing. Organization is very key.

Intuit: Who do you lean on for support? Who do you go to for questions about your business?

Marian: I’ve built a strong network of incredible friends who also have small businesses, or are attorneys, branding experts, or graphic designers. I thank them all so much for their help every day.

Intuit: What are your goals for the year?

Marian: My goals include expanding marketing for the game through content. I want to start a YouTube series that shows the different ways people interact with the game. Building awareness is a major goal for me. I’m working on planning several events and game nights right now, across a ton of big cities.

Intuit: What does prosperity mean to you?

Marian: Prosperity means being able to take care of my family, while still being able to enjoy things in life like traveling, or spending time with friends. Having the opportunity to give back is the marker of prosperity for me.

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