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how do i promote my new cake business from home?

post #1 of 47
Thread Starter 

hello everyone! i have just started my own cake business from home.  i just got my website up and have business cards made but i dont know the best way to promote it other than making up sample cupcakes and bringing them to businesses with my cards? ive been looking for upcoming events in my area to participate in to spread the word but i havent seen any until late fall time.  im new to this area so i dont know many people and where i previously lived i knew everyone and thats how i got the business i did, but im now making it an offical business.  does anyone have any ideas on how to promote my business besides my website.  i know it would be easier to have a store-front shop but im not in a position financially yet. any ideas that maybe have worked for you or others? thanks:)

post #2 of 47
Where are you located, what are your competitive advantages, and who are you targeting? What is your monthly budget for advertising?

There are many different ways to promote your business, but your ROI will vary greatly depending on your business and your market.
post #3 of 47
Oh you should advertise on Craigslist! And be sure to donate a huge spead for a local event ...for free! Then, find a client with lots of friends who wants a big huge intricate cake. Do it for free & she'll sen all her friends to you!!

^^complete sarcasm!! Those never really work.

As Jason said, a lot depends on your target market. You'll want to build a portfolio if you don't already have one. You'll also want to optimize your site for searchablity.

What did you previously that worked?

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
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www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply
post #4 of 47

Hi,

 

I am a newbie, but, here are some suggestions:

 

- if you want to make use of technology and less on cash try Social Media

      -----> twitter, facebook  (also try checking out the features of meetup.com - find a group, network/make friends and promote your business)

      -----> blogging is another way

     ------> online flyers/forms/advertisement via ADOBE FORMS CENTRAL ( first 50 forms/flyers are free) you can email to your current clientele and new possible clientele, the interactive design environment is user friendly, streamlined, clean and simple (of course, additional features comes with additional cost) -- its like the digital version of traditional flyer-marketing-strategy.

     ------> e-mail marketing services (such as constant contact  and the likes)

 

 

- there's also the standard/traditional way (which still holds it grounds in this age of technology)

    --------> word of mouth, friend network, business or organization networks etc.

    --------> providing a calling card after every business meeting, discussion, consultation, or after every purchase

   ---------> advertisements on your products packaging or your business transportation or certain merchandise

------------> media marketing

 

hopefully this helps you out in some ways.

post #5 of 47

Google how to write a press release and send it to your local daily newspaper.  Having them do a spread with some photos on the great new custom cake bakery will get some local buzz going with your name.
 

Always put your eggs in one basket.......why do you want to carry two?
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Always put your eggs in one basket.......why do you want to carry two?
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post #6 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baker_Rose View Post

Google how to write a press release and send it to your local daily newspaper.  Having them do a spread with some photos on the great new custom cake bakery will get some local buzz going with your name.
This would only work if your customers still read the newspaper.
post #7 of 47

Agree with the newspaper part. Depending on where you are located, people do read the local newspaper. I was featured close to Valentine's Day, and had a big spread with pics etc. My phone was ringing for the next 3-4 days and I did 11 orders on Valentine's Day.

 

Since Easter is coming up, maybe you can make something related to Easter and have the newspaper feature you with the pics so you get some orders for Easter. Also do make a Facebook page and network with all the other local businesses in your area who are on Facebook.

 

Make sure to post pics regularly on your website and FB page. If you are looking to do wedding cakes, make dummy wedding cakes for practice and pictures and post those online as well. 

post #8 of 47
I think a lot also depends on what audience you want to reach. A lot of my business is from kids parties, so I've left multiple cards and a few look books with businesses that do kids parties. I also connected with my town parent and child association and will be part of their coupon book for members, and friends have posted in local interest groups for me. I've also put cards on bulletin boards at local dance studios, gymnastic academies, etc. Think about who you want your customers to be and where they frequent.

One word of caution though, make sure you are properly licensed/permits in order if your town requires it. I've heard it's the advertising that often alerts the board of health to unregistered home bakers.
post #9 of 47

I like the meetup idea @bakingghurl suggested. I will also add Instagram to the list of free publicity. Here you have to take advantage of the hashtags though. After you post the picture, post the theme in hashtag: #cake #baking #business #love #follow <-- make sure you hashtag your state, city and nearby territories as well to make your post local. That way if someone is searching for what's going on in your area, they can see your cakes. 

 

Instagram just made it possible for people to send you direct private messages which is a great asset.

 

______________________________________________________________________________________

 

www.cakeiseverything.com

____________________________________________________________________________________________________

Cake Is Everything

http://cakeiseverything.com

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____________________________________________________________________________________________________

Cake Is Everything

http://cakeiseverything.com

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post #10 of 47

I looked at your profile, but didn't see any pictures posted.  Your skill level will also determine where you should market.

 

If you've got tip top skills, seek out wealthier areas/businesses/opportunities who may be willing/more able to pay for your level of service.

 

How busy do you want to be?  I have a website, FB page, and have posted my info on free party sites.  I have been doing cakes for around 10 years, have taken breaks to have babies.  Have 4 kids, so I don't want to be too busy.  I only do a few cakes a month and that is fine with me. 

 

I send out quotes, many don't go with me because of the cost.  Those that do, love my cakes and have become repeat customers.   I am over being offended that people don't choose me, I am not willing to lower my prices.

 

And I quit doing charity events as an advertising strategy because they are just that....I don't remember ever getting a booking from those, despite people raving about the cake.

 

I did a bridal show in an mediocre area and I may (can't be certain) have gotten one order, even though most people told me they liked my cakes the best out of all of the other cake vendors there.  Also did a mall bridal show....that was a waste.  Lots of free cake given out to FAMILIES cruising the mall and not a lot of brides.  I did get a communion cake out of that!  Not worth the price of admission!

 

Word of mouth is my best option, as are repeat customers.  I don't do ANY formal advertising but could surely ramp up my biz if I wanted to....right now it's just not really an option.  When I do, I will be going to bridal shows in the more exclusive events in my area.

 

Sorry to go on talking about ME...I guess my point is that you need to figure out what you want to get out of it.  Full-time, part-time, "paid hobby"? 

 

If you rely on this for a lot of income, you will have to be more aggressive, of course.  And that can be hard being new to an area.  Seek/Chat up local business owners in related fields...caterers, DJ, party planners, florist, etc.  Meet with them, if they are willing.  Take them samples and business cards.

 

Good luck!!  Let us know how it goes.

Aah, cake. . .the 5th food group!!
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Aah, cake. . .the 5th food group!!
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post #11 of 47

LOL!  I tried to edit my post so it wasn't so "all about me"....it didn't save.  Not doing it again.  Sorry about that.  I don't talk to many adults and when I get the chance I go all Super Babble on everyone!

 

My apologies.  Just giving you my 2 cents.

Aah, cake. . .the 5th food group!!
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Aah, cake. . .the 5th food group!!
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post #12 of 47

I agree, a lot depends on your target customer.

 

I think putting business cards up on bulletin boards at local businesses works really well, as well as flyers and such.  Do you have a newsletter in your neighborhood?  That works well too!  and of course, like everyone else said, facebook and twitter.  Post every single cake you do!

Gotta have more cowbell!
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Gotta have more cowbell!
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post #13 of 47

Facebook. Facebook. Facebook. Post pics of cakes you have made on Facebook, like and share. People will message you! Free and powerful. Started a "business page" and this is a little annoying with the restrictions, but hey, it is free! Best Wishes!

post #14 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeesKnees578 View Post
 

I looked at your profile, but didn't see any pictures posted.  Your skill level will also determine where you should market.

 

If you've got tip top skills, seek out wealthier areas/businesses/opportunities who may be willing/more able to pay for your level of service.

 

How busy do you want to be?  I have a website, FB page, and have posted my info on free party sites.  I have been doing cakes for around 10 years, have taken breaks to have babies.  Have 4 kids, so I don't want to be too busy.  I only do a few cakes a month and that is fine with me. 

 

I send out quotes, many don't go with me because of the cost.  Those that do, love my cakes and have become repeat customers.   I am over being offended that people don't choose me, I am not willing to lower my prices.

 

And I quit doing charity events as an advertising strategy because they are just that....I don't remember ever getting a booking from those, despite people raving about the cake.

 

I did a bridal show in an mediocre area and I may (can't be certain) have gotten one order, even though most people told me they liked my cakes the best out of all of the other cake vendors there.  Also did a mall bridal show....that was a waste.  Lots of free cake given out to FAMILIES cruising the mall and not a lot of brides.  I did get a communion cake out of that!  Not worth the price of admission!

 

Word of mouth is my best option, as are repeat customers.  I don't do ANY formal advertising but could surely ramp up my biz if I wanted to....right now it's just not really an option.  When I do, I will be going to bridal shows in the more exclusive events in my area.

 

Sorry to go on talking about ME...I guess my point is that you need to figure out what you want to get out of it.  Full-time, part-time, "paid hobby"? 

 

If you rely on this for a lot of income, you will have to be more aggressive, of course.  And that can be hard being new to an area.  Seek/Chat up local business owners in related fields...caterers, DJ, party planners, florist, etc.  Meet with them, if they are willing.  Take them samples and business cards.

 

Good luck!!  Let us know how it goes.

For me, the web page and FB page are working nicely. I do have business card that I hand out and stickers with my logo to put on my boxes. I am not looking to take in too many clients, as I do have a full time job and three children. It's more of a hobby for me, but I enjoy offering to people as well. The first time someone didn't go with me because of my pricing, it hurt a bit, but then I realized in the grand scheme...I'm not looking to support myself. Nor am I looking to put all the time into my cakes for free either. And I also don't want to be rushed because I have too many cakes to make. If I do a few cakes or less a month, I'm happy. 

post #15 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by SandraDee73 View Post
 

For me, the web page and FB page are working nicely. I do have business card that I hand out and stickers with my logo to put on my boxes. I am not looking to take in too many clients, as I do have a full time job and three children. It's more of a hobby for me, but I enjoy offering to people as well. The first time someone didn't go with me because of my pricing, it hurt a bit, but then I realized in the grand scheme...I'm not looking to support myself. Nor am I looking to put all the time into my cakes for free either. And I also don't want to be rushed because I have too many cakes to make. If I do a few cakes or less a month, I'm happy. 


Sounds like we are in the same boat!  I am always afraid to put myself out there!  I have this idea (although probably a false idea) that I will get too many requests and will be afraid to say no.  Which is crazy  because I have NO PROBLEM saying no now, when I am not too busy!  lol

 

Good luck w/ your biz!

Aah, cake. . .the 5th food group!!
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Aah, cake. . .the 5th food group!!
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