067 – Inside The Cocoa Cabana with Ronda Priola

Ronda_Priola HSEpisode 067 – Ronda is the owner of The Cocoa Cabana Gourmet Chocolates.

GBU-Candle-067RPShe makes all her own chocolates in the store, including toffee, caramel, creams, marshmallow, peanut butter cups, pudgies (which are turtles) and one of their biggest sellers – chocolate covered potato chips.

The Cocoa Cabana is in its tenth year of business, 9 in their current location.

Ronda is spreading the word that chocolate is not bad for you. It’s just gotten a bad rap lately. Chocolate can actually be good for you and has health benefits as long as you eat good quality chocolate.

Business Inspiration

A childhood love of baking [4:50]
Ronda’s husband suggests she go from baking for friends to baking for business [7:22]

Candle Flickering Moments

The difficult hunt for a location with a commercial kitchen and her creative solution in year one [16:03]
Ronda’s continual struggle with balancing her day [22:22]

Business Building Insight

Linking up for a Russell Stover apprenticeship [8:02]
Searching for a business name [12:04]
The importance of a retail location [19:05]
The value in doing local events [26:45]
Ronda’s approach to getting her customers [28:14]
A successful and slightly different email approach [28:56]

Success Trait

Ronda loves people and enjoys talking on a one-on-one basis. Her husband lovingly defines them as “The Chocolate Bartenders.”

Productivity/Lifestyle Tool

Recognizing the need for a supporter in her business, Ronda mentions several times throughout our talk how much her husband contributes to the success of the business.

Valuable Book

So Long Insecurity: You’ve Been a Bad Friend to Us by Beth Moore

Free Audio Book

Contact Links


The Cocoa Cabana, 651 S. 8th St., West Dundee, IL 847-851-8775

If you found value in this podcast, make sure to subscribe and leave a review in Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts. That helps us spread the word to more makers just like you. Thanks! Sue

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.