Building A Multi-million Dollar Company Around A Cupcake!

by admin | May 18, 2017 11:00 am

In today’s technology driven world Silicon Valley is viewed by many as the capital of ingenuity. It’s where many of the game changing companies are born, where innovation bubbles and where the future is born. On the other side of the coast is a company bursting with the same energy, creating the same type of game changing products, and they are the phenomenal company Kevin O’Leary invested in on season 4 of Shark Tank- They are Wicked Good Cupcakes[1]. I had the opportunity to speak with Tracey Noonan about how they’ve built a multi-million dollar company all around a cupcake! Take a look and hear what she had to say:

Jay: Kevin O’Leary has spoken so highly of Wicked Good Cupcakes and the great work you’ve done to grow the business. How are things going now?

Tracey: Being part of the Shark Tank family is an incredible experience. Like many entrepreneurs who score a deal with the Sharks, there’s a “tsunami like” burst that takes place that drives sales to an amazing level. That’s when the real work begins. It’s up to us to make sure we continue to deliver to our existing customers as well as connecting with new customers. For a while after our pitch on Shark Tank aired I remember feeling, “ok, millions of people just saw our product, is there anyone left for us to reach out to?” Much to our delight our sales have continued to rise month after month and we wake up every morning knowing that there are so many new people to reach out to and the sky is truly the limit.
Jay: That’s an incredible achievement to see such strong growth, Tracey! What are some of the things you do that has enabled you to continue to see such strong growth?

Tracey: I think the one principle that has really been the bedrock of our brand is that we’re always looking for ways to improve and get better. Everything from better dry goods to better packaging, we know there’s always room for achievement and witnessing the continued growth has motivated us to stick to our core and constantly improve.

Jay: How do customers place an order for Wicked Good Cupcakes? Is it only available online?

Tracey: Most of our orders are placed online. While we do have one brick and mortar store in Boston, we opened that one because there are an amazing 8-10 million tourists a year who come to that area. However, the success of Wicked Good Cupcakes is not because we’re located in a storefront on a busy street. Our success is because our cupcakes are truly wicked good. When we fill an order for a corporate client who is sending them to hundreds of their customers we know they’re going to fall in love with them. We’ve done our best to make sure they are so good that they literally sell themselves. Initially, we thought we were a baked goods company but quickly realized that our niche was more in the gift category and because we’re small we’re able to pivot, change direction and put our focus in that market.

 Jay: What’s so incredible about you guys is that you’ve taken a simple product and created an entire company around a cupcake!

Tracey: So true, Jay. So many people think that to achieve success you’ve got to be the next Facebook, or social media related app and we’ve seen how the real recipe for success is value to your consumers. Not only are we a commodity product, but there’s absolutely nothing proprietary about cupcake! Our success is because we make sure to provide the best customer experience, which includes our ability to give our customers that nostalgic feeling of enjoying cupcakes their mom or grandma used to bake for them. It goes beyond the cupcake itself as well. We’ve put in a tremendous amount of focus into our website to make sure the entire purchasing process is simple and easy. We’ve even set up a call line so we can help older folks who have a hard time ordering online, and the dividends have clearly paid off. We’ve had so many people comment on how pleasurable it was to order with us and that has generated a strong sense of loyalty with our customers.

Jay: The need to innovate is paramount in every industry as air is to life. What are some of the new initiatives you’re working on at Wicked Good Cupcakes?

Tracey: So true, Jay and we take that very seriously at WGC. Just a week ago we launched Wicked Good Cupcakes birthday boxes, giving our customers an entire birthday party in a box. Each package includes candles, blowers and stickers which our customers love! After that we’re going to roll out a baby gift box which will include cupcake jars for mom and dad, and a cute assortment of rattles for the baby. While there are plenty of other brands who offer similar packages, what separates us from the rest of the pack is that we’re constantly listening to our customers and changing our model to fit their needs. For example, we’re going to start a video messaging opportunity where you can go online and order one of our baby packages for a friend. Then you can record a video message for them. As soon as UPS confirms that the package was delivered, the customers gets an email with the video message. Small but meaningful touches go a long way!

Jay: If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice, what would that be?!

Tracey: For me I struggled with the feeling that I had to do it all myself, which I think many entrepreneurs experience. But the truth is that trying to do everything prevents you from focusing on the things that are truly unique to your skills. In order to grow you need to hire other people and put your trust in them that they’ll be able to do just as good a job as you can. The best advice I could have given myself and that I continue to give myself is, in order to grow you need to let go.

WCGK BioWhat started as a way for a mother and daughter to spend quality time together, quickly became a nationwide phenomenon. With very little business experience and very little money, they set out to create the world’s best tasting cupcakes with the goal of being able to ship them to any household in the United States.

Their story of hard work and perseverance serves as inspiration to anyone looking to follow their dreams. You can learn more about their journey below.

  1. Wicked Good Cupcakes:

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