How To Get Your Name Out There?

Business By Cjusarmy Updated 16 Jan 2009 , 4:25am by gladyk

Cjusarmy Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 6:19pm
post #1 of 13

Hey Everyone. . .

I wanted to get some insite from you guys about how to get your name out there to the masses.

Ok, I started making cakes about a year and a half and my cakes are now up to the standard of the professional style. I've been making cakes for my family members and co-workers. . but really havent made profit from it. . But now I feel that I need to get my name out there, so I can start doing more. . but how do I do that??? Do I need to make my own website, print out flyers and stick them onto car windsheilds and stick them into peoples mailboxes. . . .Please can anyone shed some light onto this matter??

Thank you all,


12 replies
FromScratch Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 7:32pm
post #2 of 13

Well first things first.. are you legal? Meaning do you have a licensed kitchen where you bake your cakes from? I see you are in California, and Cali doesn't allow food prepared in home kitchens to be sold to the public so you would have to be renting a kitchen or have a separate commercial grade kitchen on your property. Cali is one of the more strict states out there from what I am told, so unless you are licensed I'd stay away from advertising.

Now.. if you are licensed then they shy's the limit. A website is a must this day and age and business cards are great too. Flyers are so-so and I don't do them unless I am at a bridal show to hand out. Pound the pavement and network with other professionals.. wedding planners.. party planners.. florists.. photographers.. they all can give you leads.

Good luck! icon_smile.gif

kansaswolf Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 7:47pm
post #3 of 13

Also, putting things in people's mailboxes is illegal unless you're a mail carrier... So don't do that...

That said, good luck in your venture! icon_biggrin.gif

kelleym Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 8:06pm
post #4 of 13

I never did any kind of advertising when I had my business. Strangely enough, my name got "out there" on the basis of referrals from paid orders. One great baby shower cake turned into orders for 4 other baby shower cakes, which in turn generated more orders, until I had a fairly loyal and growing customer base.

I know a lot of people have success giving away free cakes and getting business that way, but I found the free cakes to generally be a waste (in the sense of not getting business from them).

If you're licensed, a GOOD website with lots of pictures and info and the right meta-tags can drive a lot of business your way.

msauer Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 8:07pm
post #5 of 13

Also, look into your local Chamber of Commerce to see what is going on. If a new business is opening and having a ribbon cutting ceremony maybe you can do some free cupcakes, maybe (like my town) they sponsor a "Taste of (Insert town name here)"...they have local businesses come and set up tables so that the general public can buy tickets to the event and sample food from lots of local food service providers in one fail swoop.

Post your information on free websites like, and others you can find.

Do a few free cakes here and there for big businesses...someone at each of these places is bound to need a cake at some point and hopefully they'll remember you.

Give away a cake in a school's funraiser or other charitable event. (Alot of people never call to collect, but least you got the free press).

Like jkalman long as you're legal....

ps- jkalman....those flowers in your avatar are HOT STUFF!!! Beautiful work!!!!


Carolynlovescake Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 8:17pm
post #6 of 13
Originally Posted by Cjusarmy

print out flyers and stick them onto car windsheilds and stick them into peoples mailboxes. . . .Please can anyone shed some light onto this matter??

If you are doing cakes unlicensed from home I advise you not to do this.

a) Some city/counties in California will fine you for windshield flyers. Myold county had a $500 first time offender fine. If any were found on the ground it was a "per flyer" littering fee.

b) It is my understanding it is against the law to open a mailbox that isn't yours. (We are going through something like this with a neighbor right now and working with the Post Master).

It's also against the law to place flyers in mailboxes.

c) California will also go after you and fine you if they catch you handing out a business card. I know a general contractor and an on the side computer guy who were fined $5,000 for operating without a business license.

I am from California and decorated there since 1989. Let me warn you if you are caught producing and selling unlicensed cakes from your home it could get ugly. They are the strictist state out there with getting caught. I've knowing many people busted over the years I lived and decorated there. I've shared a worst case scenaio story here already about a friend loosing pretty much everything. I've also had friends walk away with barely a warning. You can't tell if you'll just get a "please stop" or a "here's our lawyer's knocking on your door and it's not going to be pretty."

Now with that said...

You can create a "calling card". That can have your name, address & phone number on it. It can't have a business name or slogan on it identifying you with a business.

So doing them like this would be considered a calling card because you are not advertising anything only providing your name and phone number. Please realize though doing this can still get you caught if a friend of a friend hands it over to someone to call you to do a paid cake.


Doing them like this is considered a business card and can get you caught with the Business License Department, IRS, and Health Departments.


*I do not know CJ's last name, I chose Baker because she bakes cakes. If she really is a CJ Baker and bakes cakes then I hit the lotto on that one and need to go play the state lotto game at Dari Mart down the street. thumbs_up.gif

FromScratch Posted 13 Jan 2009 , 8:31pm
post #7 of 13
Originally Posted by msauer

ps- jkalman....those flowers in your avatar are HOT STUFF!!! Beautiful work!!!!

Thank you very much. It was my first peony and I was sad to see it go away on a cake. icon_lol.gif

Cjusarmy Posted 14 Jan 2009 , 5:32am
post #8 of 13

I would like to thank you all for all of the GREAT!!! insite on this topic and also to the ones that spoke about some of the laws in Cali. .

CarolynGwen Thank you for those cool looking calling cards (sample)

*I do not know CJ's last name, I chose Baker because she bakes cakes. If she really is a CJ Baker and bakes cakes then I hit the lotto on that one and need to go play the state lotto game at Dari Mart down the street."

I like the new last name that you gave me. . LOL. . icon_biggrin.gif But. . . sorry to pop your bubble. . but I'm a guy . . .But its cool. . I don't take offense on being called a lady. . icon_cool.gif But I do thank you for the great help. . CJ

FromScratch Posted 14 Jan 2009 , 2:00pm
post #9 of 13

Are you active duty Army? My BIL is in Iraq right now with the Army and my brother is an active duty Marine and he just got back from Okinawa and was in Iraq a while back. My brother is stationed at Ft Miramar in San Diego.

Cjusarmy Posted 14 Jan 2009 , 3:37pm
post #10 of 13

jkalman. . I was but I got out. I was in for 6yrs saw 2 tours of the great big sand box. I was stationed for all 6 in europe maindly Germany and Italy. I was assigned to 1st ID or Big Red One. . usaribbon.gif

Miramar is actually right down from where I live. . I am actually 10mins from the main gate of Camp Pendleton which is an hour away from Miramar.

FromScratch Posted 14 Jan 2009 , 6:20pm
post #11 of 13

usaribbon.gif Well thank you very much for your service. It's a duty that not everyone is up for. My brother will likely have one more tour and then he's out in June of 2010. He's a helicopter mechanic as well as being a door gunner. This past deployment wasn't so bad.. he split his time between a carrier and Okinawa. He just came back state-side last week and he'll be back in my neck of the woods next week for a visit. I can't wait to see him. Sorry to babble so much.

Good luck finding a way to make your cake thang work too. From what I hear Cali can make it hard. The only good thing is being where you are you should be able to find a kitchen to rent or even find a kitchen co-op. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you.

Carolynlovescake Posted 14 Jan 2009 , 9:14pm
post #12 of 13

CJ paint me red and call me embarrassed!I am SOOOOOOOOO sorry about the gender mix up.

I lived very near where you are now when I was married to my ex while he was enlisted (Army). I love that part of San Diego best and I miss it so much (but not the ex. hehe).

gladyk Posted 16 Jan 2009 , 4:25am
post #13 of 13

I think a website is always a good idea. Even if not promoted as a business, but more of a portfolio.

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