We had the good fortune of connecting with Ebony Raye and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ebony, what is the most important factor behind your success?
I think that the most important factor behind the success of my brand is that I have a genuine passion for people. I believe that I have a special ability to connect with people in an honest way, which is the driving force behind a successful business in hospitality. I pride myself on working closely with and developing a customized experience for each client.
What should our readers know about your business?
ShakeUp ATL is a mobile bartender service that specializes in providing excellent service for events. What sets us apart is that we offer a customized experience for each client by tailoring our services to fit their needs. We offer an array of hassle free packages as well as delicious signature cocktails and mixers made with fresh ingredients. At ShakeUp ATL we recognize the importance of the little details and how they work together to create a memorable experience for our clients and their guests. I pride myself on making a connection with each person I come in contact with and making sure that their special day is as perfect as it can be. I got to where I am today by setting a standard and adhering to that standard every day. I personally select each bartender that works with us to ensure that they maintain the same standards. We do not cut corners on service and we go above and beyond every time. Communication is key and one of the most important parts in building trust with our clients. I make sure to respond quickly to emails and calls (even after hours). It definitely has not been an easy road to get to this point in business. I remember starting out with a dream and no money. I think that was the biggest challenge was to know that I did not have the recourses that many other bar services had…but I always knew that I could excel in my skills and passion as a way to make up for what I lacked in recourses. The way I overcame each challenge was by trusting the process and putting one foot in front of the other, knowing that the storm never lasts always. It has been tough to stay focused while sacrificing so many things for the sake of building a business. There has been a lot of sleepless nights and early mornings and sure that new levels will bring new challenges. Over the years I have learned countless lessons, far too many to mention here but the biggest lesson that I have learned is to trust myself. I have also learned that growing will always be challenging, but it’s in those challenges where progress is made. I want the world to know that the ShakeUp ATL brand is truly my life’s passion that was built with a lot of blood, sweat and tears. I want people to know that we value and appreciate where we are now and we look forward to growing and branching out into new ventures.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would take my friend hiking at either Sweetwater Creek or Stone Mountain, to a sporting event, a comedy show and a bar. I really love going to Burn in the Battery, Varasano’s or Spondivits. I would also take them to do all the touristy things like the aquarium, world of coca cola and the college football hall of fame. I always find the different museums interesting, especially the selfie museum. Also I tell anybody that comes to visit that they have to swing by Ponce City Market.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
It is very difficult to narrow this down to just one person as there are at least 3 people that come to mind in my journey. First is my son Evin. As a teenage mother the journey with my son has been the most important one that I have taken in my life. I honestly don’t think I would be where I am today had it not been for him. He is literally the reason for everything that I do. It has been so important to me to teach him the importance of honesty, dependability & a strong work ethic. One of my greatest motivations in life has been to do something to make my son proud. He is my reason for it all. The second person that comes to mind is my mother Gwen. She has been by biggest fan and most consistent support system. I remember when I was first starting with ShakeUp ATL my mom had no idea about the bar business. However she took it upon her self to learn all she could so that she could be of assistance while I chased my dream. My mom deserves more credit than I can ever express as she has always been there…even when she’s exhausted she always finds the energy to come through for me. I appreciate her so much! The third person that has been a huge impact is our Event Coordinator Taylor. She is the epitome of day one in every sense of the word. I am so thankful that she has chosen to go on this journey with me. Over the years she has been the person who keeps me on task, keeps me organized and catches all the things that I miss. It is very rare that you find someone you can trust in. It makes me so happy that Taylor continues to take on new challenges as we expand and grow into new avenues.
Evin Neals and Ebony Raye