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how do i promote my new cake business from home? - Page 2

post #16 of 47

i'm facing this same problem as well..i need some advice and help too..

post #17 of 47
Ok im in the same situation and March will be my first month that I have 5 cakes. I also work full tome so 5 is a decent amount for me. Recently my husband started helping me promote at his work which has led to 2 of the cakes. Also my aunt o redered one a few weeks ago and I recieved 2 additional orders from other people she knows. Word of mouth is really good as well as facebook. Also you have to be willing to talk and the more you put yourself out there the better! Maybe find someone that knows a decent amount of people in the community provide a cake for. Just be ready when you start getting orders!!
post #18 of 47

I am new here but a great way to advertise is to donate your products at local fundraisers. Most look for baskets or baked goods. Put together a few platters with your cards. Local Libraries and schools have them throughout the year. It has worked wonders for me.

post #19 of 47

It depends on which state that you live in.  I had my county license and was making cakes and advertising by word of mouth and had business cards made. I thought that I was OK.  I made a cake for a cancer fund raiser and another cake maker reported me to the health department.Turns out I was not OK.  I was told when the man from the local Health Department called me, that I could travel 100 miles to one of the universities in my state and take an all day course offered by the Department of Agriculture and the cost is $100.00 and receive my "Domestic Kitchen License", then the Department of Agriculture would inspect my kitchen.  Or, I could remodel my kitchen in my home, which required that the kitchen be totally closed off from all other rooms with a door going into the other rooms. No living area can be included in the kitchen area.  This was impossible because my kitchen and living room are separated by an island bar and the ceilings are vaulted.  If I had the kitchen closed off and made it into a commercial kitchen I had to have a 3 compartment sink, a separate hand washing sink.  I would also have to have a utility sink for moping in a separate room and a designated bathroom with an automatic door closure.  I wanted to stay in business, so I started looking for a place to rent.  My husband said, the logical thing to do is to turn our garage into a commercial kitchen. I didn't want to, but then I asked myself, why should I spend thousands of dollars fixing up some one else property and paying rent and if I had no business that month, I would have to pay rent and the least expensive place, which was I hate to say, a dump was $750.00 per month. My decision then was to turn my garage into a full commercial kitchen.  So, I checked on what I should do.  First I had to go to the zoning department for my county, get permission to have a business in my home.  I got that approved.  Then I had to submit to the Health Department my plans for my kitchen, got that approved.  Then the "fun" began. I got my county license, which was $15.00, then I had to get my state license which was $212.00 and then I spent thousands of dollars getting my commercial kitchen in place.  I now am legal, have had my full commercial kitchen in place for almost a year.  I have been inspected by the health department on several occasions, you don't know when they are going to show up.  I have always received a score of 100.  I feel truly sorry for the cake decorator that reported me that she is so insecure that she felt that she had to do such a bad thing.  I know of others who do what I was doing and I say, more power to you. Cake decorating is an art and if you can share your art with others, go for it. I am now catering full wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, birthday parties, preparing meals for couples and families. got in with some businesses and doing catering on a regular basis for them, AND I am baking and selling cakes, pies, cupcakes, cake pops, etc!!.  I have a good client base built up and I am staying very busy.  I can advertise in the newspaper and telephone book, which I do. I have a new 2013 van for delivery and catering.  So ladies, all that I can say is, just be careful as to where you sell or donate your cakes.  But my final words are "HAPPY BAKING" and good luck!

.

post #20 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by rachelb86 View Post
 

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:)

Just a thought:  Make jumbo cupcakes, the gourmet kind, and bring business cards to "wedding specific" business' (bridal shops, tuxedo shops, etc).  Bring business cards and cupcakes to the chosen locations and that will get your foot in the door.  You will have more of a start than you can handle.  I don't give much free away, but this is worth the effort.  jo

post #21 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by pattipoo12 View Post
 

It depends on which state that you live in.  I had my county license and was making cakes and advertising by word of mouth and had business cards made. I thought that I was OK.  I made a cake for a cancer fund raiser and another cake maker reported me to the health department.Turns out I was not OK.  I was told when the man from the local Health Department called me, that I could travel 100 miles to one of the universities in my state and take an all day course offered by the Department of Agriculture and the cost is $100.00 and receive my "Domestic Kitchen License", then the Department of Agriculture would inspect my kitchen.  Or, I could remodel my kitchen in my home, which required that the kitchen be totally closed off from all other rooms with a door going into the other rooms. No living area can be included in the kitchen area.  This was impossible because my kitchen and living room are separated by an island bar and the ceilings are vaulted.  If I had the kitchen closed off and made it into a commercial kitchen I had to have a 3 compartment sink, a separate hand washing sink.  I would also have to have a utility sink for moping in a separate room and a designated bathroom with an automatic door closure.  I wanted to stay in business, so I started looking for a place to rent.  My husband said, the logical thing to do is to turn our garage into a commercial kitchen. I didn't want to, but then I asked myself, why should I spend thousands of dollars fixing up some one else property and paying rent and if I had no business that month, I would have to pay rent and the least expensive place, which was I hate to say, a dump was $750.00 per month. My decision then was to turn my garage into a full commercial kitchen.  So, I checked on what I should do.  First I had to go to the zoning department for my county, get permission to have a business in my home.  I got that approved.  Then I had to submit to the Health Department my plans for my kitchen, got that approved.  Then the "fun" began. I got my county license, which was $15.00, then I had to get my state license which was $212.00 and then I spent thousands of dollars getting my commercial kitchen in place.  I now am legal, have had my full commercial kitchen in place for almost a year.  I have been inspected by the health department on several occasions, you don't know when they are going to show up.  I have always received a score of 100.  I feel truly sorry for the cake decorator that reported me that she is so insecure that she felt that she had to do such a bad thing.  I know of others who do what I was doing and I say, more power to you. Cake decorating is an art and if you can share your art with others, go for it. I am now catering full wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, birthday parties, preparing meals for couples and families. got in with some businesses and doing catering on a regular basis for them, AND I am baking and selling cakes, pies, cupcakes, cake pops, etc!!.  I have a good client base built up and I am staying very busy.  I can advertise in the newspaper and telephone book, which I do. I have a new 2013 van for delivery and catering.  So ladies, all that I can say is, just be careful as to where you sell or donate your cakes.  But my final words are "HAPPY BAKING" and good luck!

.


Sounds like "that person" did you a big favor.  You have more than enough business. good luck jo

post #22 of 47

Thank you, yes, she actually did.  My husband says he is proud of me that I cam back with a vengeance. The joke was even more on her, because I was planning on closing my business temporarily because I hurt my back while catering for a car dealership.  I had 20 pounds of BBQ sliding out of the refrigerator and I twisted to catch it, in doing so, I twisted a vertebra in my back.  I had shots, took pills and did everything that I knew to do.  My last resort was surgery. So I scheduled my surgery thinking that I would be out of business for about 3 months.  WRONG!! The damage was really bad, I lost the use of my left leg, when the surgeon pulled everything back into place from left to center, it weakened my left leg so badly that I lost the use of it.  I was on a walker and then a can for over a year.   When I started my business back up, my clients were so happy to have me back that my business took off again.  It has been continuing to rise and I am very busy.  I hardly have a day off, I love it, but sometimes I get tired and just think, "If I could just have a couple of days off", then I get a call for an order and I am up and going again.  It is like a shot in the arm and away I go.   I suppose it is like that when you enjoy making other people happy with your talent.  I love to cook and have passed this on to my daughter, she helps me and I have some other ladies and my husband

that help when it comes to catering. I am all alone with the cake decorating because I am the only one that can do that.  But, we just participated in a bridal show and my husband baked the cake that we used for samples and he made the icing.  I had to thicken it up a bit but he did a great job.  :-)I am proud of him!  I got a booking from it and it was a Belk Department Store in the Mall and I didn't have to pay to participate.  After the show, I sold my demo cake, which was made fresh the day before and I also sold all of my left over candy. I tried to give it to the lady, but she insisted on paying for it. Thanks again and good luck to you!!

post #23 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by pattipoo12 View Post
 

It depends on which state that you live in.  I had my county license and was making cakes and advertising by word of mouth and had business cards made. I thought that I was OK.  I made a cake for a cancer fund raiser and another cake maker reported me to the health department.Turns out I was not OK.  I was told when the man from the local Health Department called me, that I could travel 100 miles to one of the universities in my state and take an all day course offered by the Department of Agriculture and the cost is $100.00 and receive my "Domestic Kitchen License", then the Department of Agriculture would inspect my kitchen.  Or, I could remodel my kitchen in my home, which required that the kitchen be totally closed off from all other rooms with a door going into the other rooms. No living area can be included in the kitchen area.  This was impossible because my kitchen and living room are separated by an island bar and the ceilings are vaulted.  If I had the kitchen closed off and made it into a commercial kitchen I had to have a 3 compartment sink, a separate hand washing sink.  I would also have to have a utility sink for moping in a separate room and a designated bathroom with an automatic door closure.  I wanted to stay in business, so I started looking for a place to rent.  My husband said, the logical thing to do is to turn our garage into a commercial kitchen. I didn't want to, but then I asked myself, why should I spend thousands of dollars fixing up some one else property and paying rent and if I had no business that month, I would have to pay rent and the least expensive place, which was I hate to say, a dump was $750.00 per month. My decision then was to turn my garage into a full commercial kitchen.  So, I checked on what I should do.  First I had to go to the zoning department for my county, get permission to have a business in my home.  I got that approved.  Then I had to submit to the Health Department my plans for my kitchen, got that approved.  Then the "fun" began. I got my county license, which was $15.00, then I had to get my state license which was $212.00 and then I spent thousands of dollars getting my commercial kitchen in place.  I now am legal, have had my full commercial kitchen in place for almost a year.  I have been inspected by the health department on several occasions, you don't know when they are going to show up.  I have always received a score of 100.  I feel truly sorry for the cake decorator that reported me that she is so insecure that she felt that she had to do such a bad thing.  I know of others who do what I was doing and I say, more power to you. Cake decorating is an art and if you can share your art with others, go for it. I am now catering full wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, birthday parties, preparing meals for couples and families. got in with some businesses and doing catering on a regular basis for them, AND I am baking and selling cakes, pies, cupcakes, cake pops, etc!!.  I have a good client base built up and I am staying very busy.  I can advertise in the newspaper and telephone book, which I do. I have a new 2013 van for delivery and catering.  So ladies, all that I can say is, just be careful as to where you sell or donate your cakes.  But my final words are "HAPPY BAKING" and good luck!

.

I don't think the other cake baker was so insecure that he or she reported you and did "such a bad thing", I think they knew the expense and time it takes to run a legally operating food production facility and was put off by an illegal bakery showing up with the appearance of a legitimate business.

 

I'm sure that was interpreted as being rude, but now that you are on the legal side of things and going through the processes and regulations required in this industry, you will probably come to feel more like the baker you are currently upset with.

 

No corporation would hesitate to shut down an illegal competitor, I wouldn't hesitate either. We're not all in this together. It's a business... nothing personal.

~ Follow me to the underground ~

http://www.undergroundcakes.com

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~ Follow me to the underground ~

http://www.undergroundcakes.com

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post #24 of 47
Agree with ugcjill.

Since when is reporting an illegal business a bad thing? Reporting illegal businesses actually has nothing to do with jealousy or being insecure.
post #25 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Godot View Post Since when is reporting an illegal business a bad thing?  
 

When someone owns an illegal business they find it a despicable act of legality.

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post #26 of 47

I thought that I was legal.  I called the Health Department and told the man what I was doing, the set up that I had and I was ready for him to come and inspect my kitchen. He asked me if I was going to be making over a certain amount each year, I can't remember now how much he stated.  I told him that I wished, but that no I would not be making that much, that I would only be working part-time at this.  He said that he did not need to come and inspect my kitchen that I had my license and was good to go. So I took him at his word and proceeded with my part time baking.  I am sorry that I don't feel the way that you do, when I am too busy to fulfill an order, I gladly call another cake maker and pass the business on to them.  The other cake decorator reported some other people there as well to see if they were legal and had their license.  Some did and some didn't.  I don't know what her motive was, nor do I care.  I do not advocate anything illegal, but I can assure you that not every cake maker-decorator out there has his or her license and has a full legal commercial kitchen.  Some consider it as a hobby.  Correct, it isn't legal but they are out there doing their thing.  Maybe they have their domestic kitchen license, maybe not, I am not their judge and jury.  I am not going to pry into other peoples business.  I have enough to keep me busy and I don't have time to check out every cake decorator to see if they are legal.  I am proud of the kitchen that I have and the business that I have built. It has cost me several thousand dollars and I probably won't get back the money that I have invested, but  I am doing what I enjoy. 

post #27 of 47

Do you have a food service license to do from your home? If not you better be careful.They will fine you big bucks.Believe me someone WILL turn you in.

post #28 of 47
Ohio has a great cottage business law to encourage home based businesses, because great things start at home. Maybe once your children are grown, or sooner as your client list grows, you'll take the next step and rent a storefront. I moved to a new area and considered opening a bakery then I met 2 women business owners. One had a little bake shop for sale in what i thought was an ideal location and my heart leaped. Over a coffee and a cookie i learned she was crazy bitter about even opening the shop every day because she had apparently only made money the first 5 of 10 years and was blowing through her retirement savings to stay afloat. The second woman owns a primitives shop, tells her husband she's going to go play when she leaves for work and spends her off time at shows around the tri state to buy more for the shop. She's a retired teacher, her husband is still working, helps in the shop and she's completely happy. I don't see much leaving the shop so I don't think its a great money maker but she absolutely loves it and the bakeshop woman hates the store, the customers and the business with a passion. Those two made me step back and really consider my finances and my goals. My 1st grandchild is due in 2 weeks, I'm planning flowers and cakes and spending $$$ for another daughters wedding in july thats 200 miles away and we retired last year so we're adjusting to a much lower income. This is obviously not the right time to start a new business and I thank God for sending me the not so happy bakery owner and Ohio for the cottage law that lets me move toward my business at my own pace!
post #29 of 47

Yes, I have my county and state license, the department of health come by periodically and inspects me just as they do restaurants, my score is always 100.  I have a full commercial kitchen set up as the health department guide lines suggests.  I am registered with the department of revenue and pay sales tax and I report my income to my accountant. who in turn reports to the IRS.  I am fully legal!!  In my state you can get a "cottage law" or "domestic kitchen" license, but I wanted to have a full blown business and did not want to wear out my personal kitchen. I have also taken courses in food handling and contamination.  Our state is getting ready to have a mandatory class, in depth, on food cross contamination and I plan on being in the first class.  I abide by the rules and if others don't then when they are caught they can pay the price.  I do not make copyright cakes as some other do, which is as I understand a $250,000 fine.  I have many 5 star ratings and many excellent reviews for my business and I have a good business, which I am proud of having. I jumped through all of the hoops and did everything to the letter to have a legal commercial business!!!!

post #30 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by pattipoo12 View Post
 

... I have many 5 star ratings and many excellent reviews for my business and I have a good business, which I am proud of having. I jumped through all of the hoops and did everything to the letter to have a legal commercial business!!!!

 

I am so impressed with your energy and commitment! Congratulations, it's not easy being in business...You're an inspiration!! Please share your business info (business name, website, and Facebook pages) we'd love to see them!!

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