We had the good fortune of connecting with Marla Giordano and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Marla, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Starting my own business was a leap of faith that I took in the midst of the pandemic. Ever since I was a little girl, I knew I wanted to own a cupcake shop. I didn’t realize it would start so young.
I am a very innovative, creative, and outgoing person. Working for corporate companies just didn’t work for me because there isn’t a lot of room for your own creative ideas. I wanted to be able to implement all these crazy ideas I had working for other people and turn it into my own vision. The pandemic seemed like that perfect time to step out of my comfort zone and see if running my own business would be successful. I truly believe it has been.
I first started with the most basic cupcakes to see if this is something people in my neighborhood would even care for. As I started to grow, I started implementing more ideas, crazy flavors and toppings. You name it, I’ve done it. Starting my own business truly has been the best decision I could have made.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
We specialize in gourmet cupcakes. Our cupcakes are baked fresh for all of our orders and are topped with house made frosting, specialty toppings and house made sauces. We also take custom orders. Whatever you want, we will do it.
We definitely are very proud of our grind. We work day and night if we have to. Our customers are the most important part of the whole operation. We do what we have to do to keep our community happy and loving our cupcakes!
Getting to where we are today definitely wasn’t easy. We had to make a very big move from San Diego in order to make this possible. You have to know how to communicate and build relationships with other business owners, in order to grow your business. This was hard at first, as we really didn’t have experience with it at first. We have definitely grown as a team in the last year and now we absolutely love being able to make those connections. We had to do a lot of research and start small. We are currently working our way up to working these big farmer’s market and hope one day in the next few years to have a storefront.
We want people to know that are main goal of Marla’s Cupcakes is to bring happiness to our community. We love to get out and talk to people all over and be able to provide them with something they enjoy.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Hands down, we would take them to the farmer’s markets. We are currently at the Gilbert Farmer’s Market every Saturday and we absolutely love it. The owners, the managers, and the other vendors are truly amazing at what they do. There is so much variety to choose from and at the end of the day, we LOVE to support other small businesses.
Our next stop would be Old Town Scottsdale. We have never had a bad meal down there, but our favorite would have to be Diego Pops. We LOVE dessert and our go-to place would have to be Shakes and Cones. Our Salted Caramel Waffle Cone cupcake is actually inspired by my favorite dessert there. They have the best vanilla bean soft serve that I put in a waffle bowl with house made salted caramel sauce with whipped cream and cookie dough on top.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Starting a business on my own was not an easy task, especially at my age. I definitely couldn’t have done it without my mom, Carrie and my dad, Bruce. They raised me and taught me what it means to have work ethic, to be open-minded, and to pursue my passion. I couldn’t have been where I am today if I didn’t have them to look up to growing up.
My mom and my partner, Giovanni have been the glue to my whole operation for the first year of this business. Whatever I needed, and I truly do mean whatever, they were always there. They are the brains behind our farmer’s market sales operation and I truly believe Marla’s Cupcakes would not exist today without them.
The Onli Cannoli is another small business we work with at a couple the markets we do. They have been a tremendous help on our journey thus far and we are so grateful to have two other successful entrepreneurs to look up to and go to advice when we need it. It has been an incredible year long journey so far and we are excited to see what this next year has in store for us!