icon-account icon-glass

SECURE SHOPPING

SSL technology and other clever stuff provided by Shopify Secure.

NOT RIGHT NOT A PROBLEM

Cast iron money-back guarantees or… your money back. Click here

PREMIUM DELIVERY

Our couriers have a very particular set of skills. They will find you and they will deliver to you.

  • Community
  • Urban CEO Jack Tang On What It Takes To Grow A Modern Wellness Brand

    30th November 2020

    30th November 2020

    By Innermost

    In 2014, Jack Tang and Giles Williams founded Urban with the intention of starting a massage-at-home service. However, what started as a way to book wellness online become much more. We recently spoke to Jack to find out about Urban's journey over the past few years, how they've dealt with lockdown, and how he ensures he take care of his own personal health and wellness.

    Hi Jack! So what inspired you to launch Urban?

    In 2014, my business partner and I saw how unfairly wellness professionals were treated in the industry. They would often be working in salons and taking home as little as 20% of the service price. We saw this as an opportunity to disrupt a growing industry and not only offer a fairer share of the economics for the professionals, but also provide customers with on-demand wellness at their fingertips. This is something that I believe is now more important than ever.


    Why is wellness and taking care of ourselves so important in this modern day and age?

    Wellness is more important than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic. Taking time to care for ourselves helps with all elements of mental wellbeing, from coping with stress, to dealing with turbulent situations, and generally living healthier and happier lives. 

    More broadly, we’re all living much faster-paced, busier lives, which makes self-care and taking time out of our day to focus on our own wellbeing increasingly more important.

    What makes Urban stand out in a market that’s becoming increasingly more saturated?

    We’re constantly innovating and solving the broken experiences within the industry in order to place our customers (both end users and practitioner partners) at the heart of everything we do. We invest heavily in tech to ensure we offer the best in class experience. We recruit great people who are deeply passionate about this industry and we have nurtured a strong community of partner professionals to offer their services on the Urban platform.


    Can you explain how technology has played a key role in Urban’s development?

    Technology is at the core of our business. It is the underlying platform that hosts all of our partner-practitioners’ businesses and is where customers can discover and book them. We use technology to solve complex problems and make mobile businesses far more efficient (for example, routing and shortening travel time between appointments, diary management, payments, reviews and rating), while at the same time giving our customers access to on-demand wellness at a moment's notice. We offer and will continue to offer a wide suite of tools for partners to run their businesses more effectively.

    Urban was founded on the principle of having therapists come to wherever the customer is. How was this affected by lockdown and how did Urban overcome the obstacles presented by this time? 

    Lockdown has not only directly affected our business, but it has also prevented our partner-practitioners from going about their own daily business and earning an income. At the start of lockdown, the team worked tirelessly to launch a digital pop up consisting of private one-to-one video sessions that allowed us to continue to provide an income to our practitioner community, as well as staying connected to our customers and enabling them to stay well during lockdown.

    View this post on Instagram

    Natural, authentic and strong: three words Urban pro Mal B uses to describe her style of Thai massage, which she mastered in the Chiang Mai countryside. Now based in South London, we caught up with her between bookings...⁣ ______⁣ ⁣ ⁣ 1. How are you finding life back on the road?⁣ ⁣ Luckily I've had a lot of bookings which has helped me back on my feet – people need to de-stress in these difficult times. Everyone has been very understanding of the new safety guidelines and still rate my massages very highly.⁣ ⁣ 2. Is there anything you wish more people knew about Thai massage?⁣ ⁣ A lot of people tend to associate it with stretching, probably due to how it has been presented in western media. My style uses acupressure techniques along the main energy "sen" lines of the body.⁣ ⁣ 3. What's your number one aftercare tip?⁣ ⁣ Upping your magnesium intake. Whether that’s a bath with lots of Epsom salts or a magnesium supplement, it's the quickest way to relieve tightness in the muscles!⁣ ⁣ 4. How have you been keeping well? Any new self-care routines?⁣ ⁣ It’s been really important for me to keep active. I've started working on my cardio and strength training up to three times a week. As a massage therapist I need to take care of my own body so I can deliver the best treatment everytime.⁣ ____⁣ ⁣ Find Mal on Urban 👉 urban.co/p/mal⁣ ____⁣ ⁣ 📸 by @gregorydewode 😷 Please note that all Urban pros now wear masks as well as visors.

    A post shared by Urban App (@urbanapp) on


    We’ve also partnered with Collective Benefits to provide mental health support to our partner-practitioners during this time, giving them access to mental health practitioners for live support. Additionally, we’re also working with the financial services company Steady Pay to offer our partners a stream of advanced revenues using their historical trading history on the Urban platform. This is money which is to be paid back when they're able to resume their activities at a later date.

    How do you ensure that you take care of and prioritise your own personal wellness, mentally and physically?

    At the core of my own wellness regime is regular eight hours of sleep - I think this is really important and underestimated by a lot of people in business. I also make sure to put away my phone and enjoy quality time with my family and friends as much as possible, be it while at dinner or simply doing the cooking and washing up in the evening.


    Also, I have routine treatments help me to manage stress and anxiety. I make sure to have them regularly each month and find that they’re the perfect way to restart my body and mind.

    What’s been the most rewarding part of growing Urban? 

    It definitely has to be seeing the impact that we've had on both our customers' and partner-practitioners' lives. It has been transformative for the financial wellbeing of our partners, and has empowered our customers to look after themselves in a way that fits around their busy schedules.

    To learn more about Urban, you can find them here. For an exclusive 20% off Urban's services, use code INNERMOST20. 

    Other Insights

    Being A Fierce Female With Kate Parr
    Hustle, Habits and Health with Aaron Breckell
    Aaron Breckell is an online body transformation coach at ABC fit and an Innermost Ambassador. Aaron has been a coach for over five years now, and is currently working with over 75 clients online all working towards fat loss, muscle gain and performance based goals. We sat down with Aaron to find out about how healthy habits and routine fuel his hustle, and how he teaches the importance of habit to his clients.  Hey Aaron! Tell our readers a little bit more about yourself and your background? I'm a personal trainer and online coach that helps individuals to burn fat, build muscle and improve their confidence. I’ve been doing this for around 10 years now and have worked with hundreds of people. My own interest in health and fitness comes from my background and experiences working out in the gym and improving my body and lifestyle. As well as my interests in the gym, I’m a keen guitar player and I also love surfing! What inspired you to start ABC Fit? My coaching business is a reflection of my ethos when it comes to health, fitness and body transformations. I love helping people and I wanted to deliver a message to my clients that shows simplicity and sustainability. Getting in shape and improving your health doesn’t need to be, nor should it be hard and complicated. The “ABC" in ABC Fit stands for Aaron Breckell Coaching, but ABC being the first three letters of the alphabet are simple and easy - just like the message I’m trying to get across.  Do you think health and fitness is all about habit? Habits allow us to live our lives efficiently without thinking about the small, regular things we do day in, day out. I think of them like the human body’s autopilot. Developing good habits and maintaining them is fundamental to seeing longterm sustainable results with any goal. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Aaron Breckell Coaching (@aaronbreckellcoaching) How have positive habits changed your life?  Positive habits have not only helped me to change my body, build my confidence and improve my health. They also have created the disciplines that have allowed me to build and run a successful coaching business. Take us through your daily routine. How do your daily habits drive this? 7am: My days usually begin at around 7am. I kick the morning off with my breakfast which is usually a high protein/moderate carb/moderate fat meal. I find this is the best way to start my day. Along with my breakfast I take The Focus Capsules. This has been such a fundamental supplement since working from home for me as it helps me to keep my focus and concentration. As we all know there are so many distractions at home that can get in the way - so staying on top of things mentally is vital! 9am: After my breakfast, I let this settle and switch on my laptop and reply to any urgent emails or messages from clients. The next thing on my agenda is to take care of myself so at around 9am I begin my workout. Around 20 minutes before my workout, I start sipping The Energy Booster. Making a habit of a morning workout means it gets done. 11am: I’ll finish my workout with the Innermost Strong Protein. This hit of protein helps my muscles to recover, plus its got creatine added which is a bonus so it can help to replenish my creatine stores too. I’ll be showered and dressed and at my desk by 11am ready to get stuck into the day. The bulk of my working day involves checking in with clients via my app, answering any queries and creating custom meal and workout plans for them to follow for amazing results. 1pm: Around 1pm I’ll have my lunch. I normally opt for something quick/easy, yet nutritious like a chicken wrap with avocado and salad. One thing I’ve found that has helped my productivity massively since working from home is to make a habit of setting and planning daily tasks to accomplish each day. It’s also really important to schedule in breaks during the day away from work or else it becomes so easy to keep working through without a break. It’s great to work hard at your job, but you still need to look after yourself right! View this post on Instagram A post shared by Aaron Breckell Coaching (@aaronbreckellcoaching) 2pm: After lunch I’ll be back at my desk again and getting stuck into more client focused work. I quite often use this time to create content for my social media too. 6pm: I’d typically work right up until 6pm, by which point I’m ready for my dinner! I normally cook up something like fajitas or a pasta and meatball dish in the evening. Again something high protein and delicious! 9pm: Around 9pm I’ll take The Recover Capsules to further assist my recovery from training and the working day. This nootropic contains all sorts of amazing micronutrients such as zinc and magnesium, to help assist with recovery and calm the nervous system for an even better nights sleep. I’ve found I sleep like a baby since adding these into my routine. 10:30pm: I’ve made getting into bed by 10.30pm a habit. Sleep is so important! Best advice for breaking bad habits and routines? I would say - ease yourself in. Work on one thing at a time and nail this before moving onto the next. So many of us try to overhaul our routines overnight and as a results fail to adhere to the changes. Looking for ways to create accountability within the new habits you’re trying to stick to can also be helpful. For example an online coach, a food diary, a habits buddy you can share the journey with or by keeping a journal. Best advice you’ve ever been given? “In every negative situation there is a positive. Sometimes we just have to look a little harder for it”. Looping this back around to habits, if you keep failing at sticking to certain habits, there’s a reason behind it. It’s not necessarily a bad thing if you look into why it's happening. Find the why and you find the positive. Understand what it’s trying to teach you, learn the lesson and I guarantee you’ll be successful. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Aaron Breckell Coaching (@aaronbreckellcoaching) What have you found to be the most challenging habit to keep up with? When I first got started on my journey, I initially found drinking 3L of water each day to be a challenge. One way to help stick to habits you’re struggling with is to understand the positive impacts of it. For example we all brush our teeth twice a day because we understand it will help us to keep a white healthy smile, a clean mouth and fresh breath right? I didn’t understand the importance of staying hydrated - so once I educated myself around that I made a much better effort to stick to it as a habit and it worked. What are some of your worst habits?  Social media scrolling at night! We all do it, and it’s probably effecting our sleep patterns negatively. It’s definitely something I need to work on over the coming months and instead perhaps leave my phone in another room when I get into bed. Favourite aspect of being a lifestyle coach? I love being able to communicate a message to my clients (and followers on social media) that takes them from point A to B. It’s so empowering for me to see another individual achieve something important to them, especially when they’ve tried before and failed or have been led to believe that it’s impossible. To learn more about Aaron, follow him on Instagram or head to his website.  Read more
    James Pook / Q&A