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Unrealistic budgets...wasting my time!

post #1 of 52
Thread Starter 
I guess with the economy these days, brides are showing up thinking that the prices I have posted and the prices we quote them at their initial inquiry is not for them, but for everyone else??? I have had some brides that come for a tasting, and I quote them the SAME amount they were told at the initial inquiry (usually its email) and then they come back and said they aren't booking because I was out of their budget. That is fine, but WHY DID THEY COME TO THE TASTING! I have limited tastings, and have brides who ARE serious about their cake and have to have them come at later dates because these who cannot afford me decide to come anyway. Do they think Oh whats the big deal, I want some cake? That I would say Oh, just kidding, I will charge you less?

I am very upfront with my prices. Should I remind the brides when I give them their confirmation for their tasting that the cakes run such and such? Ask them their budget? (I ask my party cakes their budget all the time, helps me from designing a cake that is too much, but I don't have any "set prices" for my party cakes, as they are all so different) Very frustrating!
Gotta have more cowbell!
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Gotta have more cowbell!
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post #2 of 52
I don't do tastings until they put down a deposit. If they want a tasting before the deposit than they pay for it. If they book with me after that paid tasting the cost of the tasting is applied toward the deposit. It saves me the looky lues that just want an "Experience"
post #3 of 52
I think heavenlys is right, a lot of them just want the "fun" of making all the wedding plans, so tastings are like a little outing. There's likely something to the idea that they're also trying to get you to come down on your price, since someone who booked with another baker probably wouldn't call and tell you that unless they were trying to bargain.

You might want to ask people what their budget is when they first call to make an appointment, then if someone's so far out of line you can just tell them that you can't do it within their budget. You're always going to get people who aren't realistic about it, though, so I don't know that there's a lot you can do to prevent it. (Other than taking the deposit before the tasting like heavenlys does, but that wouldn't fly around here, there's too much competition.)

I had one girl email me and tell me that she had deicded to go with a different bakery because they were cheaper, and it was obvious that she was trying to get me to come down on the price. I didn't bother to email back, I don't discount, but I also know that the bakery she was talking about has the filthiest kitchen I've ever seen, and they store their baking supplies in a bathroom that looks like it hadn't seen a scrub brush in about ten years. Good luck with that. They're cheaper because they don't have to buy cleaning supplies, apparently.
post #4 of 52
I think that's exactly it. They want cake. It's "their day" They are "the bride" and cakes tasting at all these different places are part of the "experience" bridal mags and pushy friends and wedding planners shove down their throat, just like with trying on gowns, some brides already know what dress they're going with they just want to play dress up and be the princess because they're "THE BRIDE" it doesn't matter whose time and resources get wasted.
"A good man can make you feel sexy, strong, and able to take on the world... oh sorry... that's wine... wine does that."

"You are only helpless when your nail polish is wet. Even then, you could pull a trigger if you had to."
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"A good man can make you feel sexy, strong, and able to take on the world... oh sorry... that's wine... wine does that."

"You are only helpless when your nail polish is wet. Even then, you could pull a trigger if you had to."
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post #5 of 52
Ever see that show "Say Yes to the Dress"? They get a lot of looky loos too and those poor folks are on commission and could lose their jobs if they don't make their quota. I just don't get these people though. I was an old first-time bride at 36 & I knew who I wanted to do my cake because I had their cakes at multiple weddings. There were no tastings of any kind there. The "samples" if you can call them that were the tear drop cutter size of the cake that they had sliced off the top when leveling it, put on a cake board with the flavor written around it. I don't think Duff gives samples either until you book with him and even then I think he charges w/o taking it off the price of the cake (although I may be wrong about that but that is what I was told by a friend of mine who was just up there).
post #6 of 52
I don't think it has anything to do with the economy, I believe it has more to with people's sense of entitlement, and wanting the whole 'wedding experience'. I'M getting married. I'M so important.
post #7 of 52
I was just talking the other day to the wedding coordinator at a venue I do a lot of cakes for, and we started talking about tastings and she said it is such a strange phenomenon right now that all the sudden all the brides are asking for tastings. She said last year she had maybe 2 brides ask for tastings and so far this year almost all of them have asked for tastings. I told her I think it's a lot of these wedding shows on TV that show brides and grooms going to cake tastings and that it's started this idea that you are missing out on some part of your wedding experience if you don't do a tasting.

I just started implementing a $25.00 fee for tastings because of this. Tired of going through all the work for some brides who are just "playing" and getting the "experience" but aren't serious. I remember doing a tasting for my wedding cake years ago, but it was to choose the flavor of the cake. We'd already chosen them as our baker.

Not only that but some of these brides expectations are ridiculous. I've had a couple brides want to try 8+ flavors! Seriously! They got to choose 4. Some people's children.
We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals. -Immanual Kant
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We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals. -Immanual Kant
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post #8 of 52
I think a lot of people simply think that most prices are negotiable. My sister and I got married 6 weeks apart, and when we booked all our vendors many of them gave us a discount for booking two weddings with them (even our cake decorator). You never know unless you ask, and most people think it's silly to pay asking price for anything without at least attempting to get a discount. Sometimes it's just as simple as asking, you know?

Maybe when you give your initial quote you could state that the price is firm, so they know upfront that they are not going to pay any less. They probably think when they see you in person for a tasting, that's their chance to try and cut you down on your price. You could probably weed out a lot of people that aren't willing to pay without them wasting your time on a tasting.
Angela
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Angela
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post #9 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mensch

I don't think it has anything to do with the economy, I believe it has more to with people's sense of entitlement, and wanting the whole 'wedding experience'. I'M getting married. I'M so important.




Amen, sista!

Plus, La-Bella-Flor mentioned something to me that I wholeheartedly agree with. People confuse "service" with "servant". Yes, I am providing a service for you, but I am NOT your SERVANT and I am NOT going to bow to your every wish and command. (dismissive snapping of the fingers)
Just put on your Big Girl Panties and deal with it!
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Just put on your Big Girl Panties and deal with it!
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post #10 of 52
When I got married (5 years ago) we didn't do "tastings" we picked our cake person on pics in her book at the bridal show and price, she gave us her "per serving" prices up front and said any extra doo-hickies would be X-amount extra. we met with her once to discuss design and flavors. We had a choice of chocolate or white and three different fillings. We never tasted the cake and she had the fillings on a couple plastic spoons. It was just me and my husband at the meeting. My cake was so beautiful I cried at my reception, she exceeded my expectations. I only got one slice but it was so yummy I had cake for 150 and only 80 guests and there was NONE left over. My point is it wasn't that long ago things were different and the wedding industry has exploded and really knows how to market itself
"A good man can make you feel sexy, strong, and able to take on the world... oh sorry... that's wine... wine does that."

"You are only helpless when your nail polish is wet. Even then, you could pull a trigger if you had to."
Reply
"A good man can make you feel sexy, strong, and able to take on the world... oh sorry... that's wine... wine does that."

"You are only helpless when your nail polish is wet. Even then, you could pull a trigger if you had to."
Reply
post #11 of 52
I think it's also regional. I was researching a new market area a couple of years ago and had my niece helping me with the local stuff. We are one hour apart. An easy drive. No biggie.

Here, in Indy, I found it was almost a given that you give tastings/samplings. In the other market area, just a lousy 1 hour drive away, when my niece was asking "do you charge for samplings?", she got a 100% response of "charge for WHAT?" icon_eek.gif None of the food/cake providers in that town had heard of (or did a) sampling for brides.
post #12 of 52
I dont do tasteings unless you are a booked customer with money down. Maybe that seems harsh, but business is business.
A twisted sense of humor will get you through the day!
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A twisted sense of humor will get you through the day!
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post #13 of 52
I had this lady emailed me the other day, she tasted FOUR of my flavors on the last bridal show and wanted to come for a consultation and tasting, she told me she loved my cakes and she even took some samples home for her fiance and her mom.When I asked how many servings she needed....30!!!...30!!! I (very nicely) told her that I only did tasting for 75 servings or more but since she enjoyed my samples so much she alredy knew how I baked, she replied that she wanted 'the experience', oh! by the way, she wanted the cake to be delivered 1-1/2hr away!, I replied only did delivery and tasting for 75 serv. or more and she needed to pick up the cake and if she wanted a tasting she would have to pay $25.00...Never heard back from her thumbs_up.gif

This other lady wasted an hour of my time, she wanted to taste SEVERAL flavors to order....wait for it...TWELVE cupcakes...I told her sure you can taste them! they're $3.00 each.

I had previuoly talked to her mom over the phone (the mom works for a friend), when the mom mentioned her dd wanted a tasting I told her free tastings were for 75 serv. or more but I had cupcakes at the shop for sale, I also gave her pricing but apparently she didn't tell her dd because when I gave her the final price at the consultation she looked shocked! and I was giving her a deal! of course they didn't book but, fine with me.
post #14 of 52
I also believe that the TV shows have alot to do with it.

It reminds me of the time my sister begged and begged for me to make her friend a cake. I for one did not like that friend besides the fact that I make cakes for friends and family so of course I said no. My sister then proceeds to tell me that her friends daughter is turning 1 and shes going all out to make this birthday special and that the babys daddy had money and bla bla bla..............

My sister says I told my friend that you are going to make it, that you are just being a witch about it. So my sister gives me a picture that her friend had downloaded off the net. It was a cake from pink cake box 3 tiers princess themed. And in the back of the paper her friend writes a lil letter stating that she was willing to pay what ever it was up to 80 dollars LMAO !!!!!

I was like are you kidding me. I told my sister that I was still not going to make her friend a cake. But people are funny sometimes. My sister didnt talk to me for like a month. But yes they want all for nothing.
post #15 of 52
It's funny. I'd never think to weedle a plumber or doctor down from their stated price.
Housework makes you ugly.

It's marshmallow, not marshmellow! Aaargh, I have the strangest pet peeves!
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Housework makes you ugly.

It's marshmallow, not marshmellow! Aaargh, I have the strangest pet peeves!
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