Kick-Start Your Business With Freelancing Platforms – Jesica Marican

Our guest this week is Jesica Marican. Jesica is the owner and organizer of Denver Home Organizing. As a new mom with new challenges, she felt like she wanted to do more. She thought of starting her home organizing business in Denver, put it online, and the rest is history.

Jesica said that when organizing homes she makes sure she creates a system for her clients to maintain clutter and day-to-day ins and outs of actual physical things in the home. She believes that our surroundings make a huge impact in our mental state. According to her, an organized home gives a calm and peaceful solution to her clients. She said that when you reduce your clutter, you are also reducing your stress.

You wouldn’t want to miss out on this episode!

Jesica’s website:



Katie Brinkley 0:02

Hi friends. I’m Katie Brinkley and you’re listening to Rocky Mountain marketing. This podcast is all about helping Colorado based small business owners, entrepreneurs, realtors and professionals discover the strategies and systems that take their marketing to all new heights. Let’s dive into today’s episode. Welcome back to Rocky Mountain marketing. today. My guest is Jessica Maracana, born in Argentina raised in Denver, married to a Singaporean, and a mom to a five year old that was born. While living in England, Jess has seen a variety of homes and lifestyles. This helps her personalize organizing solutions to meet each client’s specific needs. In her free time just loves reading, Netflix binging, kickboxing, eating and spending time with her husband and son and friends. Just thank you so much for coming on the show today.

Jesica Marican 0:53

Hi, thanks for having me.

Katie Brinkley 0:55

I’m really excited to have you here. And I know that we have some scheduling issues. But I’m excited to hear your story and hear some of the tips that you can share with the audience. So let’s start just a little bit back at the beginning, I always like to have the guests give a little background on where they grew up and what life was like growing up for you. Sure,

Jesica Marican 1:15

I grew up in Centennial went to Smoky Hill High School, I have two older sisters, but they’re a bit older. So they were out of the house when I was little. So it was pretty much my brother and I growing up together, we’re four years apart. And a lot of time together.

Katie Brinkley 1:29

Did you find as a kid that you kind of had that that leader sort of spirit or leader mentality? Or that you do all these kind of things that you would start your own business? Or was it kind of something that you fell into,

Jesica Marican 1:43

I never thought I would start my own business. That was definitely not something that was ever on my radar. My parents are hard workers, but very traditional job, you know, working for the public schools. So what my mom did, she was a teacher. And so in my mind, it was just always you grow up and you go to college, and then you just get a regular job. So I studied international relations. And my first job out of college was Community Development for nonprofit. And I really, really enjoyed that. So I thought I would continue doing that. But then I actually wound up moving into teaching for a few years myself, and then I had my son. And so teaching is not really something you can go back to part time, it’s not something you can cut down, you know, to a few days a week and stay at home those other days. And so I was a stay at home mom and I was starting for me, I was getting a little stir crazy. After about a year and a half, I was really grateful to have been able to stay home and spend that time with my son. I know not everybody has the choice of something that they want to do. And so I’m glad that I did have that choice. But I was also kind of itching to get back into our workforce. And so since I couldn’t go back to my old job full time yet, I knew that people did this as a job. I knew that people were home organizers and, and I knew that that was something that could be pretty flexible. I could pick up jobs as grandparents were around to watch my little guy. And so I just made up a name. And I put myself online and then started slowly growing it. And it’s been about four years now.

Katie Brinkley 3:06

You know, isn’t it crazy how sometimes we just sort of backpedal our way into entrepreneurship. That’s how it happened for me, too. I was laid off from my dream job. And I didn’t know what the next step would be. I was kind of along the lines of okay, well, and I just found out that I was pregnant too. So it was a man now I’ve, I’ve been laid off and pregnant, who’s gonna want to hire me. And so I started my own company, it was supposed to just be something kind of on the side until my daughter was born. And lo and behold, it’s been almost five years now. And I can’t imagine doing anything else. You know, I know that when I first started listening to a lot of other entrepreneurs that were, you know, two 310 steps ahead of me, made a huge difference in helping me grow my business and my confidence in being a business owner. So if someone is listening right now, who is aspiring or is a new business owner, what is the single biggest piece of advice that you’d want to give him or her as the journey starts,

Jesica Marican 4:03

I would say kind of how you just said 234 steps ahead, you have to think about it in steps. If you try to think of your end goal, and where you want to be in five or 10 years, that’s too overwhelming. And there’s too much in between now and then to kind of get your mind wrapped around. And so trying to break down what you want to accomplish into smaller steps and kind of giving yourself benchmarks along the way to your ultimate goal. I think that can really help keep you focused and keep you motivated and also help you not lose sight of the big picture along the way.

Katie Brinkley 4:38

Yeah, you know, and I think that too, it’s hard especially with with websites and social medias, especially, there’s a lot of competitors out there and it’s hard to keep the blinders on and not see where someone else’s in their journey compared to where you are with yours. So I love how you put both stay focus on your path. If you could go back and do anything differently if you had Add one do over in your business, what would you change? If anything,

Jesica Marican 5:03

I think I would have come up with my business name sooner, I tried at first to be, I think like too cutesy and come up with something kind of fun. And it was long and it was awkward. And it’s so it didn’t like flow. So then it was kind of hard to brand yourself. And then since I kept putting off coming up with a good name, I also put off updating my website and making that fully fleshed out. So I would say at the beginning, you know, take some time to really determine your brand, you know, get your logo, get your name, get your website and take some time. So that way, you have something to show people when they ask about what you’re doing.

Katie Brinkley 5:44

I completely agree completely agree. And it’s interesting, I was just having a conversation with one of my girlfriends the other day about coming on the podcast, she’s a graphic designer, and, and she was saying, I would love to come on. But I need to, I need to have my website down. And I need to have this done. And I think a lot of the times it is one of those things where you feel like you need to have all these ducks in a row. But at the same time, taking opportunity and just trying to run with your business. And growing along the way is a great piece of advice. Now I want to get it into a little bit about what what it is that you do. Because I think that you know ever since you know Marie Kondo, and then who else that the home edit, you know, there have been some shows that have come out about home organization, and I have a client in California, who is a home organizer. So I have learned a lot about what it is to be a home organizer and some of the benefits to it. But for those people who might still be on the fence or have never even heard of what home organization is, can you tell us a little bit about what it is you do?

Jesica Marican 6:42

Yeah, of course. So I go into client’s homes, and I help set up systems for them to maintain and control clutter their items kind of their day to day ins and outs of things, actual physical things that are in their home, our surroundings have a huge impact on on how we feel throughout the day and our mental state. And so I helped create calm peaceful solutions. So that way clients homes can really be a place that they can go and recharge and refresh and spend time with loved ones and not feel overwhelmed and stressed out by all of the clutter around them. So that includes everything from helping to declutter, helping clients decide what it is they want to keep and what they’re ready to, you know, let go of donate or sell to space planning, you know, and that that has a big range, sometimes too much space can be tricky, because people wind up spreading out and all the closets of their homes. So there’s that. And then there’s also the small space living where especially in Denver with some of these older homes, you know, the closets may be kind of funky, or they’re an odd shape or the built ins are a little tricky because you can’t change the shelving. So helping people also maximize their space so that every single item in their home has its own home. So that way, you know, the clutter doesn’t become a problem.

Katie Brinkley 7:59

I and I think that, you know, it’s one of those those mind shift things of getting rid of stuff, because I know when when my mom moved out of the house I grew up in into the the townhouse that she lives in now, there was all these things, and I’ll keep you don’t want your ribbons from third grade field day. And it’s kind of No, I don’t want those to them for you. And it’s hard that feeling of letting go because really, those are memories. And when people get rid of those field day ribbons from third grade, that’s a memory that’s essentially feeling like it’s being thrown away. Am I right?

Jesica Marican 8:35

Yeah, a lot of people come up across that where they do feel like they’re not honoring the memory, or they’re not honoring the person associated with that memory if they discard an item, but at the end of the day, you know, as an example, that field a ribbon, it is literally just a piece of ribbon, you know, that doesn’t change your memories about that day, it doesn’t change the relationship you had with your teacher and your friends from that day, it doesn’t change the relationship that you and your mom had as a kid and you know, her coming to see your events. And so it’s just helping people reframe, and kind of re assign the value. So the value isn’t to the thing itself, the value is to the people and the relationships. And so it’s just helping people kind of keep that mentality. So that way actly

Katie Brinkley 9:23

Yeah, well, and you know, I think that too, when you kind of start clearing out the clutter, it helps reduce the stress. So I’d love as a business owner I know that it can be stressful sometimes trying to do all the things and grow my business here at the office and then go home and that’s really my main job is being a mom and being at home to to organize house, you know, organize the house and do laundry and get dinner on the table and help with homework and go to soccer games. That’s a full time job in its own too. And so there’s a lot of stress about keeping the house organized and kind of clutter free. I know that every Thursday it feels like I’m going after the curls. My I have two daughters, I have a four year old and a seven year old. And it feels like every Thursday, I’m kind of clean up the room, you know, put the toys in? And like how do we continue finding all of these little toys, so just space in our house? And it was so much stress? So can you talk to us a little bit about when you’re organized, it will help reduce some of the stress in your life that so you can focus on on other things that matter other than picking up all the toys?

Jesica Marican 10:30

Yeah, exactly. And that’s not to say that if you’re an organized person, or you’ve gotten your house organized, that you’re never going to have to clean up. Because we’re still people, we do laundry, and then a phone call comes in. So then the laundry sits on the bed, we haven’t folded it yet, we have to come back to it or our kids are in the middle of playing a game. They don’t want to clean up quite yet, you know, we run to do an errand and you know life happens. So that doesn’t mean that all your surfaces are always going to be clear. What it means is that when it comes time to clean up, it’s not stressful, because you know where everything goes. And so it’s really quick, my son could completely destroy his room and his toys, and he could have every single object out. And it will take maybe 10 minutes to clean up. Because he knows exactly where everything goes. So it’s not that you stop living your life and using your things. It’s just that you’re able to give yourself a quick reset. And I think the key word there is quick. If you’re feeling like it’s taking forever, to get your house clean, and to pick things up and put things away. Chances are you have too many items. And so you’re not really enjoying your space, or your things are causing you stress. So you have to think about is keeping this inventory of items is keeping all of these different things going to make me feel happy, are they going to make me feel relaxed and stress free when I use them? If not, it’s just another thing to maintain, and to deal with. So you really want to be mindful about what you decide to keep in your home. Just that being mindful about the items that you keep in your home is kind of the key to being organized and steering away from clutter. Because you’re not just being reactive, you’re being proactive to the items in your house, you know, you’re not letting items come to you. I know that sounds silly, but you’re being intentional about the things that you’re choosing to keep inside your whole.

Katie Brinkley 12:24

Exactly, exactly. And I think that too, it’s it’s one of those things like you’re saying that I think that when you when you said, I know, my son can pick up all of his toys in 10 minutes. It that’s that’s that’s a dream for me, honestly. Because it that’s where the headaches come is, ah, just I just need to pick up all this, I just need to do that. And I send up spending an hour in the playroom because I’m putting everything where it belongs because they just pick it up and throw it into a bin it’s not the right Barbie, then it’s not the playdough, then it’s just a bit for them. And so it’s reducing the stress in my life just even thinking about that being only being a couple minutes instead of an hour at length. Now, do you find that when you are working with a lot of clients? Do you work with a lot of business owners where they’re trying to do like what I was saying before they’re trying to run a business and run a household at the same time? And do you see that kind of transformation happen for them when you help come in and organize their spaces?

Jesica Marican 13:25

Yeah, so it’s not, I don’t necessarily work with a lot of business owners, but definitely a lot of working professional, young family, people with young families. So it is a lot of parents who are just stretched so thin between their job, whether that is their own business or just you know, a quote unquote, regular nine to five, and then managing the household. And then I do see that transformation because especially now with so many people working from home, they’re in their office, and they’re there for the eight hours a day. And when they open that door and then go into the living room or the kitchen for them to be greeted by something that is calm and clean. And the surfaces are you know, clear and everything has a home and they can easily find what it is they need to use. Like they’re coming out to prep dinner, and they know exactly where everything is in the kitchen. Yeah, that reduce stress for them. That makes prep go quicker, that makes cleanup go quicker, that gives them more time to enjoy spending with their family in the evening or reading a book or playing a game or watching TV, whatever it is they like to do to unwind. They’re shifting the majority of their time and attention to rest and to recharging and rejuvenation rather than management of things.

Katie Brinkley 14:35

100% 100% on that. Well. I do want to ask you because you you’ve been doing this for four years now. And you know you have TR after COVID and you just said there’s a lot of people that are working from home now with with being somebody that has to go into other people’s houses, how were you able to make sure that your business state of flow during all of the shutdowns that happened Last year, I mean, that you couldn’t go into people’s homes, how are you able to make sure that you stayed in business?

Jesica Marican 15:06

Yeah, so there was, you know, at the very beginning, when everything was completely shut down that I wasn’t going into homes, I tried offering virtual services, because a lot of times, I’m able to give people kind of checklist of things to do based just off pictures alone. But that didn’t really pick up any traction. I am fortunate enough to be in a two income household, I know that, you know, I’ve got that privilege there. And so I was lucky that those few months of not having jobs wasn’t too stressful for us personally and financially, because we were able to continue, you know, making payments and paying our bills and all that. So while I did try to pivot into some online type stuff, it didn’t really work. So that was just taking more time then to build up my website, build up some of the stuff that goes on behind the scenes, since I finally had some time to actually do it. So just just shifting the focus a little bit. Well, how

Katie Brinkley 16:03

does your model look for finding and engaging and selling to new clients these days? What type of marketing Have you found that works best for you?

Jesica Marican 16:10

So what has worked? Probably the best is this app called Sun Deck? Are you familiar with it?

Katie Brinkley 16:15

I am familiar with Thumbtack. That is one of the tools that I use when I was first getting up and running on on my business. So yeah, love Thumbtack. But go ahead. I’ll let you explain that a little bit for the listeners.

Jesica Marican 16:27

Yeah, sure. So Thumbtack is just an app that you can either sign up as a customer as a professional. And so if somebody needs a job done, they can go on to there and search for professional organizers, hairdressers, personal trainers, what else is there on there, carpenters, seamstress, all sorts of different things. And so when they search, they will come up with a list of all of the professionals in that field. And then it gives you background on each person reviews, there’s pictures of the work, and then they can contact you directly through that app. So with that app, it’s really nice, because there’s no membership fee to be a part of it as a professional, you just pay per lead. And you’re able to control how much you want to spend each week on letting leads come in. And so it’s nice for a small business owner, because you can really just scale it to how much you’re able to take on at a time. And so it’s a great way to start building up your reviews and putting up your portfolio and all of

Katie Brinkley 17:25

that. Yeah, and I love we use thumbtack up one of the tasks that I might have, I say my husband and I but it was 100%. My husband, we did during during the March and April of 2020 was we removed a bunch of rock that was in the front of our house. And we needed somebody to come and take the the rock and the dirt. And I went on Thumbtack and hired somebody to come and it was gone within 48 hours. So I mean, like it’s pretty cool that app and like you said, there, you can find it any sort of small business service based business on there. There’s a lot of great local people that you can work with. So I love that you use some tech now, we’re nearing the end of our show, I want to just get a couple more tidbits of business advice from you. What is the best piece of advice that you ever received? And how has it impacted your business?

Jesica Marican 18:19

Yeah, I think the best piece of business I received is actually from a friend who owns a cooking school over in Stanley marketplace, I was talking with him one time about a lead that I had for a job that he was just was not excited about. And he told me not all good. Not all business is good business. And I don’t think I ever thought of that before. And that was huge for me. Because, you know, especially when you’re growing a business, it’s your baby, it’s your, you’re putting everything you have into it, you are your ultimate, I don’t wanna say like, resource, you’re the product. And so you don’t want to stretch yourself too thin, you don’t want to burn yourself out, you don’t want to do something that’s going to cause you to not be happy with this path. And so I think, you know, allowing yourself to say no to certain jobs, to certain clients, especially for me in this business where I’m actually going into people’s homes, like that’s a very vulnerable, intimate place. And so I have to be sure that I’m feeling totally comfortable with the situation I’m putting myself into. And so I think, you know, allowing yourself to be selective and to turn down jobs that you know, aren’t a good fit for you.

Katie Brinkley 19:29

1,000% Yet, you know, it wasn’t until I started saying no to a potential business, that my business actually started to grow and you know, having to end contracts with people that I knew I wasn’t the best fit for and that’s hard to as a small business owner, like you said, it’s your baby. It’s hard to it’s hard to say no to money. But once you start figuring out the clients that you want to work with the people that you want to work with, when you’re the happiest. That’s when you’re going to have the friendships that are long and are successful for both of you. So absolutely agree and love that piece of advice. Now, before we finish up, is there anything that I didn’t ask you about during today’s discussion that you think is important to share?

Jesica Marican 20:13

I would just say that. I know we did touch on it. But I guess I guess I would just like to reiterate that being mindful, I think is just so important. I know we hear about it. It’s a buzzword in a lot of different aspects of our life. But I just really do think it’s so important to be an active participant in your life, in all aspects of your life, from your relationships, your work, your home, just being sure that you are making decisions and doing things that are in alignment with your values. And so then that way, you are not wearing yourself down and you’re able to rejuvenate and refresh and be the best you

Katie Brinkley 20:53

absolutely agree. I just thank you so much for coming on the show today. This has been such a great conversation, where can we find out more about you and your business online?

Jesica Marican 21:03

Yeah, so I’m at Denver Home Organizing on Facebook and on Instagram, and then it’s Denver Home Organizing

Katie Brinkley 21:10

calm. Awesome. Well, thank you again, so much for coming on the show today.

Jesica Marican 21:14

Thanks for having me.

Katie Brinkley 21:16

What an awesome conversation with Jes, I absolutely love meeting other Denver based business owners, and I’m so glad that she brought up thumbtack, you know, there’s a number of apps out there that can help no matter where you are with your business journey. You’re just getting started and you’re a service based business. Thumbtack is a great tool to use. And it’s one of the tools that I use. I think that if you’re looking for someone to it’s a fantastic tool, I think that that’s one of the biggest fears when we when you’re getting started is well how am I going to find clients or you’re like me, when I was just kind of thrown into entrepreneurship I where am I going to get these clients from I have no network of clients that I could potentially take with me. And there’s tools out there like thumbtack and Upwork and fiber where you can put your services out there, if you are a service based business. Now, if you are looking to try and grow and you have and you’re selling goods, that you can use Etsy you can use Amazon Prime Amazon store and sell your items on Amazon. So as you’re building your business, don’t think that you need to have a strong clientele all ready to grow with to start your business even. I think that’s one of the biggest mistakes that a lot of business owners make is they want to start their own thing they want to try being an entrepreneur, but they think they need to have potential clients already in the pipeline or people that they could take with them. If you know that you want to be an entrepreneur, if you have an idea that you think is a great idea that you think you can grow with and that is going to be successful, why not start and so there’s tools out there that can help you, whether it’s thumbtack, Etsy fiber. Use these tools to grow your business and follow your dreams of being a small business owner. Thanks so much for listening to this episode of Rocky Mountain marketing. As always, I’d love to hear from you. You can visit my website at Connect with me on LinkedIn or check me out on Instagram. Let’s keep taking your marketing to new heights.