Consultations And Tastings

Business By Emmerdoo Updated 15 Oct 2008 , 12:22pm by MichelleM77

Emmerdoo Posted 11 Oct 2008 , 8:34am
post #1 of 16

I make cakes out of my home and I absolutely love it, the problem I am running across is this: I do not mind doing tastings and consultations, but I do NOT want to do them out of my house. I don't like clients know ing where I live. It isn't that I am ashamed of my house, but when it comes down to it, there are people out there that are a different brand of crazy. What is the best suggestion as far as doing a tasting? Do you suggest that I do it at their house, the location of the event, or do I just drop off a sample and be on my way? Please help me guys!!!

Happy Caking
Em

15 replies
KoryAK Posted 11 Oct 2008 , 8:47am
post #2 of 16

Got a Barnes and Noble? I did 'em there or Borders for years.

loriemoms Posted 11 Oct 2008 , 12:46pm
post #3 of 16

I have a friend who made arrangements with a local tea room to have tastings there.

I have been doing tastings out of my home for almost 5 years now and never had any problems..(and I mean a LOT of tastings!) .as well as cake pickups. Just thought I would throw that in..

CakeForte Posted 11 Oct 2008 , 2:12pm
post #4 of 16

I would meet people at Starbucks, but I made sure I didn't have to drive more than 10 minutes...so I would give them several location options that were all 10 minutes away from me.

leah_s Posted 11 Oct 2008 , 10:07pm
post #5 of 16

I've been doing consultations out of my home for 8 years. But then we're a B&B. Not only do we have lots of strangers in our house, we give them a key.

FromScratch Posted 11 Oct 2008 , 10:59pm
post #6 of 16

I do them from my home too. Yes there are whackos out there, but if they really want to hurt you they can just follow you home from wherever you meet them.

You can do them at a cafe, but they will have to take their samples home and eat them since serving food in someone else's establishment isn't kosher, but that's not a problem. I feel odd giving my schpeal with an audience (well a big audience icon_lol.gif) so it's easier for me to do at home.. plus I can have my dummies to try out sizes and all of my stuff is right here.

Kitagrl Posted 11 Oct 2008 , 11:07pm
post #7 of 16

I do it at home. I size up the customers both through email and in person...also usually keep the phone right next to me and there have been times I've, frankly, slipped a knife or something underneath an end table "just in case". So far I've only had TOTALLY nice people come. Plus, I don't do tastings for just anyone...only serious people planning on larger orders, like weddings or very large 3D event cakes.

You can usually tell by email if the person is going to be someone you want in your house or not..or over the phone...really. If they wanted to hurt you, they could just as easily call, ask your location, and come at night or something like that.

Another way to keep yourself safe would be to have them reserve a tasting with a refundable deposit. I don't do that, but it would weed people out...they can send you $25 or something and you can give it back when they arrive to keep their appointment. Or put it towards their cake order, whatever. Most stalkers aren't going to invest money in it.

-K8memphis Posted 11 Oct 2008 , 11:16pm
post #8 of 16

I have had to travel on business aka travel alone enough that I have this idea to share, not original with me I'm sure but--if you have a bit newer type car that has the alarm button on the key fob--you can keep your keys close by and set off that nice big fat alarm wherever you might be that you want/need to set off an alarm.

I always made sure I got a parking place right by my motel room window within shot of my key ring. Never needed to use it but it was nice to have anyway.

Just an alarming thought pour vous.

Deb_ Posted 12 Oct 2008 , 12:19am
post #9 of 16

I too have tastings/consults in my home. My commercial kitchen is in my basement and I have a sitting area down there with a separate entrance so they never come into my actual living space. Also, I only schedule consults when I know my DH or one of my kids will be home.


I've never had an issue with this either, but I can see why you would feel uncomfortable with this. Just be sure you're not home alone when you schedule the consult or pick-up, you'll be fine.

snarkybaker Posted 12 Oct 2008 , 1:05am
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Emmerdoo

I make cakes out of my home and I absolutely love it, the problem I am running across is this: I do not mind doing tastings and consultations, but I do NOT want to do them out of my house. I don't like clients know ing where I live. It isn't that I am ashamed of my house, but when it comes down to it, there are people out there that are a different brand of crazy. What is the best suggestion as far as doing a tasting? Do you suggest that I do it at their house, the location of the event, or do I just drop off a sample and be on my way? Please help me guys!!!

Happy Caking
Em




Why should a person trust you with $500 of their hard earned dollars and something as important as a wedding cake, if you don't trust them enough to give them your address ? Have you thought about how much business this might be costing you ? To me buying a wedding cake out of a Barnes and Noble would be like buying a Prada out of a guys trunk...

indydebi Posted 12 Oct 2008 , 1:06am
post #11 of 16

I did them for years out of my home .... never a problem.

I know someone who meets clients in the food court of the local mall. She uses a table in the corner, away from the crowd, and they easily eat the samples and talk.

FromScratch Posted 12 Oct 2008 , 3:14am
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by txkat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emmerdoo

I make cakes out of my home and I absolutely love it, the problem I am running across is this: I do not mind doing tastings and consultations, but I do NOT want to do them out of my house. I don't like clients know ing where I live. It isn't that I am ashamed of my house, but when it comes down to it, there are people out there that are a different brand of crazy. What is the best suggestion as far as doing a tasting? Do you suggest that I do it at their house, the location of the event, or do I just drop off a sample and be on my way? Please help me guys!!!

Happy Caking
Em



Why should a person trust you with $500 of their hard earned dollars and something as important as a wedding cake, if you don't trust them enough to give them your address ? Have you thought about how much business this might be costing you ? To me buying a wedding cake out of a Barnes and Noble would be like buying a Prada out of a guys trunk...




I couldn't agree more. And also, doing it at their house is no more safe than having them come to yours. I know that the world can seem scary but, in all reality, most people are good people.

Deb_ Posted 12 Oct 2008 , 12:48pm
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by txkat


To me buying a wedding cake out of a Barnes and Noble would be like buying a Prada out of a guys trunk...




Love this analogy..........actually my first "designer" was out of a guys trunk! icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

sweetcakes Posted 12 Oct 2008 , 4:09pm
post #14 of 16

i also do them out of my home, im not alone, hubby is generally here, although not visable cause he hides!! but i also have a house alarm with a remote that i could use to set it off silently to the monitoring station if i needed to.

keyshia Posted 15 Oct 2008 , 3:54am
post #15 of 16

I haven't officially started business yet (waiting on the inspections)...but just a thought. My ADT has a keychain. If I have that and I push these two buttons at the same time (something that can be done under a table or some other discrete way) the police will come. I didn't think of using that until I just read this...so not sure if you might have the same thing. icon_smile.gif I dont' think I'd be too worried about that though...seems like there would be so much involved, why would a crazy person worry about getting you when they could get someone else that isn't prepared in the least? I always tell DH that I dont' think people would try to get our kids out of a yard with a fence when so many around here allow their kids to play in yards with NO rear facing windows (or very few) and NO fence! Best of luck to you though!

MichelleM77 Posted 15 Oct 2008 , 12:22pm
post #16 of 16

I'd rather have them come to my house than go to their's. I know where I hide all the weapons! icon_smile.gif

Not that I've had to do this yet, but I would offer suggestions for meeting locations (coffee shop, your house, my house) and feel them out as to how they feel about it. You can sometimes tell if someone wants to come to your house to see it or if they could care less. Heck, even if I had a retail shop, would you let someone back into your kitchen to check it out? I've never seen a restaurant/bakery do that. I try never to look anyway after watching Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares! I'll just pretend that it's clean and shiny.

As an option, you can always call a local coffee shop to see how they feel about you bringing in your customers/cakes. They might not care, even might end up being beneficial to you if your bakery is something they don't currently have in their case! My local shop has a meeting room that you rent for $10/hour and any purchases you make get deducted from that price, so if you buy two fancy shmancy coffee drinks it could be free!

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