With the widespread use of social media, many people advertise their businesses on social platforms in hopes of reaching a bigger audience. For Texas A&M sophomore, Diana Reyna, one social media post led to a small business that now helps her pay tuition.
At the beginning of the summer, Reyna sent out a tweet asking her followers if they would be willing to buy cheesecakes to help her cover tuition for the upcoming year. Fast forward a few months — and thousands of followers later — she is the owner of her own business, Pastelitos Co., and has made enough money to cover the expenses that FAFSA could not.
“I never really expected to start a small business,” Reyna said. “I didn’t know cheesecake was that popular.”
Reyna did not always have a passion for baking. In fact, she attributes her father and her iPhone’s Siri for launching her cheesecake career over the holidays two years ago.
“My dad said ‘Okay mija you’re in charge of the desserts,’” Reyna said. “I’m bad in the kitchen so I asked Siri what was the easiest dessert for the holidays and one of them was cheesecake. I started incorporating my own stuff into the recipe and gave it to my family and they were like, ‘This is the most delicious cheesecake I’ve ever tasted!’”
When she learned FAFSA wouldn’t offer her as much financial aid as the previous year, Reyna was determined to work hard to make up the deficit.
“When I started selling my cheesecakes I knew it was going to be difficult, but I had to pull myself up,” Reyna said.
The Aggie Network did not disappoint. Within a week of her initial post, Reyna gained over a thousand followers and orders started rushing in. Not long after she began planning and making deliveries in College Station, Houston and Dallas. She also began getting out-of-state requests, but Reyna said for now she is keeping it local in College Station starting in the fall.
Pastelitos Co. seemed to blow up overnight, and Aggies from all over offered their help, according to Reyna.
“I’ve had a ton of people say, ‘I’ll help you make policies if you need it,’ or ‘If you need help organizing orders I can do it’ and they’re all Aggies,” Reyna said. “The Aggie network is so real, if I had not gone to A&M this would not have happened.”
Pastelitos Co. sells cheesecakes such as Strawberry Drizzle, Raspberry Drizzle and Cajeta y Nuez. The cheesecakes total $25 for pick up and $30 for delivery.
As for the advice she would give to others looking to start their own business, Reyna kept it simple.
“Anything is possible,” Reyna said.