I'm really hoping that a few of my new advertisements, including the big jump (for me) into paying "The Knot" for an advertisement...will really get me into more wedding cakes.
With four boys and busy schedules, wedding cakes are really so much more money for the time. I mean, its between baking and decorating a $150 party cake, or baking (already doing that) and decorating (already doing that too) a $600 wedding cake (because of more servings). (Plus after doing so many 3D cakes, its really nice to just get to ice and fondant some regular round cakes and add some design and be done!)
But its kind of frustrating, at least around here, its almost like you have to be in the "in crowd". I'm working on it, a little, I have a wedding videographer who I did their wedding cake and now I"m on their blog...and a wedding planner who planned two weddings with my cakes (although her clients found me, not really her, but she was impressed)...and then a very prominent wedding planner in the area bought a novelty cake from me and said he may send me some "grooms cake" orders. *sigh*
I look at these professional photographs from area weddings and see the cakes, and am confident I could do most, if not all of them, exactly like they have them in the photo...plus they would taste just as good from what my current customers tell me. Its just a matter of somehow getting the contacts I guess.
Its just that so many caterers already have "on premise" pastry chefs....and so many planners already have their "regular bakers"...so basically I have to find the brides who are independently looking for their own baker.
I didn't realize that cake making was almost like a "society" thing...well at least in my area, since Philly is so nearby and is my main market. I look at these cakes and I'm like "Man...I can DO that...if they would just ask me to...."
Somebody told me "The Knot" was a good investment for them though, so I guess I'll just be patient and wait. I'm really hoping I can pull in the wedding orders because then I'll be able to afford that double oven I saw on here a few days ago.... Currently I've been averaging like 3-4 cakes per weekend...but all novelty/party cakes. One large wedding this month which helped alot, and then I have a couple tiny ones that are about the same price as a novelty cake so doesn't count as a wedding...actually both pickup orders!
Oh and as far as networking....with my four boys and all the crazy scheduling, I really don't have time to do alot of physical networking....mostly online. I sure hope I can butt my nose into the huge wedding business in Philly....
Does your parks dept have facilties that they rent out for weddings and parties .... something more than a standard park shelter? My park dept has 3 facilities that are booked all the time. I do a lot of weddings in them. if so, take some cards to the lady in the office that handles the bookings.
With 4 boys, I can't figure out how you have time to brush your teeth but if you can spare one meeting a month, I'd recommend any PWG (Perfect Wedding Guide) meeting. you can attend as a non-member of PWG (costs you about $10 more for the lunch, but worth it!). YOu can hook up with all the wedding vendors in yoru area at one time.
There are lots of websites that you can get a free listing. I'm on about 20 freebies. Decidio costs nothing to sign up but you have to pay for the contact info, IF you want to fol-up on the lead. It's very (!) affordable ... only $1-$2 per lead.
I get a few networking emails with the schedule for the monthly meetings, and I know they'd be good...I just can't fit it in right now. As it is, I foolishly agreed to teach Wilton classes and I will be stopping that after next month. Nearly impossible to schedule around my family. Plus I'm getting surgery in November anyway....the lady at the Knot said that I should go ahead and put my ad up though so I can be doing consults while I recover so I can start scheduling weddings for January.
I saw you guys talking about Wedding Wire so I signed up for that...I'll be on The Knot in November...and I got on the Fox Philly Hot List... if you have time to PM me any other good sites I'd greatly appreciate it! I'm in Philly area so won't be competing. LOL. Although I am a Hoosier by birth! Dad from northern Indy but mom from Indianapolis. I went to Kindergarten in Indianapolis.... there see? Fellow Hoosier.
Anyway..thanks! I'll have to check into the local parks thing....although the ones around here...I dunno....they don't seem nice enough for weddings.
Thanks SO much! That'll keep me busy for awhile. LOL
I just checked out your website and realized you are local to me! I am in the King of Prussia/Collegeville/Pottstown area (422 corridor) and am in the process of getting licensed from home. I also moved to PA in 2002 and have 4 kids (2 sets of twins age 1 and 3--which means I have been very pregnant, on bedrest, or dealing with babies so much in the past 4 years that I have had little time to even post pics--I am just now getting back into it). I love decorating and want to do maybe 2 wedding cakes a month because of my full-time job. Once I actually get set up, if I get wedding inquiries about your area, I will gladly refer you. With 4 little kids, I want to keep deliveries local right now. Good luck. Let me know what works for you.
Hi Tina! Nice to "meet" you! My sister had one set of twins, can't imagine two! How sweet though....
Congrats on getting licensed (almost)! Thanks for any referrals, that's nice of you.
I did have a caterer contact me about becoming a cake supplier for their events but now they haven't contacted me back...I did warn them I am a "one woman show" and was cautious about how much demand it would have. I do hope I hear back, although I think it would take alot of thought and planning to be sure all my time wasn't sucked up into their one catering place.