How Would You Deal With Competition...

Decorating By todolomio Updated 26 Jan 2009 , 4:20pm by todolomio

todolomio Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 4:23pm
post #1 of 11

Dear CC peers!

I recently moved to a small town. After I moved I found out that there is a local homebaker that has done cakes for a while (it's been a family business for 10 15 yrs. now) I kept investigating and I found out that he lives very close to me!!! I feel bad because I know he has had a good chunk of the business for a while and I don't want to have him to think I am trying to steal his customers or ruin him. He seems to be a nice guy and very helpful to others. I sat down and started my marketing plan and decided it would be best to just leave my town out of the picture. Things are getting tight around here. I have 3 kids and one with Autism. This is what I do best and I don't want to just give it up when my family really needs the income. How would you handle something like this? It sounds weird but, I have no problem competing with someone else like a bakery but competing with a neighbor hmmm? Should I go and introduce myself or should I just let it be? I thought of introducing myself and tell him if there is anything he may need he could call me. But, I think that might not be right either. icon_cry.gificon_cry.gif

What would you do or How would you feel if you found out about a direct competitor?

10 replies
dance2874 Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 4:32pm
post #2 of 11

I probably wouldnt do or say anything. I certainly wouldnt 'leave my town out of the picture' just because somebody near me does the same thing though!

There is a lady on my street who also does cakes (we both do it just for friends and family though, not an actual business) and we peacefully coexist. We know each other (our kids are in the same class at school) and we are friends and it is ok. We each have a different style so it works out most the time.

newmansmom2004 Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 4:37pm
post #3 of 11

Fortunately there's that thing called 'free enterprise' that allows anyone to have any kind of business and just because someone else is established in the area doesn't mean that person deserves all the business. I find people are intrigued by new businesses moving into small towns. Having grown up in a VERY small town myself, we were thrilled when we had another option. Competition can be a good thing because it keeps everyone in that business on their toes - or at least it should.

I think an introduction would be nice and approach it from the standpoint that perhaps you could work together and help each other out if you get overwhelmed by orders. Certainly don't let this person walk all over you or try to intimidate you - you have every right to conduct the same business. You might even find that when you get right down to it you don't really do the same kinds of things. Maybe he or she specializes in fondant and carved cakes and you specialize in buttercream and wedding cakes.

Good luck!

Rocketgirl899 Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 4:40pm
post #4 of 11

well maybe don't market your specific neighborhood/street. but i would think your city would be ok.

Also find out more about his work. maybe you are horrible at X but he is great. You could send all your X orders to him. He knows you are fantastic at Y and would send you Y orders.

If your booked up and know hes good you could send customers his way. It could work both ways.

If he seems like a nice guy I would try to make him my friend, not my competitor.

Don't undercut his prices just so you get the cake. You never know, having a little compition from his view point might make him become a better decorator.

I personally am pretty brand/company loyal and if a new kid on the block rolls in I don't just jump ship, so for all you know his clients would rather go with what they know vs what they don't.

Approach it like, oh I sell cakes outta my house too! At least now if you need fondant at 10pm you could just walk across the street.

You didn't buy a house knowing he is "next door." so you can't really do much about location. You can respectively not directly target his customers tho.

Maybe you could both get booths and split the cost for wedding shows?

To me this looks like a great oppertunity! If he is good, you might be able to learn from him. I would love if I bought a house next to SugarShack or Colette.... lol. Duff might be a little too loud...

Good Luck. If you are good enough your business will spread toyour street by word of mouth.. adn theres nothing you can do about that... so for your direct area let your cakes sell themselves!

just my opinion. icon_smile.gif

hth?

Rocketgirl899 Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 4:42pm
post #5 of 11

newmansmom-- great answer too!

We are thinking along the sames lines.

todolomio Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 8:28pm
post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocketgirl899

well maybe don't market your specific neighborhood/street. but i would think your city would be ok.

Also find out more about his work. maybe you are horrible at X but he is great. You could send all your X orders to him. He knows you are fantastic at Y and would send you Y orders.

If your booked up and know hes good you could send customers his way. It could work both ways.

If he seems like a nice guy I would try to make him my friend, not my competitor.

Don't undercut his prices just so you get the cake. You never know, having a little compition from his view point might make him become a better decorator.

I personally am pretty brand/company loyal and if a new kid on the block rolls in I don't just jump ship, so for all you know his clients would rather go with what they know vs what they don't.

Approach it like, oh I sell cakes outta my house too! At least now if you need fondant at 10pm you could just walk across the street.

You didn't buy a house knowing he is "next door." so you can't really do much about location. You can respectively not directly target his customers tho.

Maybe you could both get booths and split the cost for wedding shows?

To me this looks like a great oppertunity! If he is good, you might be able to learn from him. I would love if I bought a house next to SugarShack or Colette.... lol. Duff might be a little too loud...

Good Luck. If you are good enough your business will spread toyour street by word of mouth.. adn theres nothing you can do about that... so for your direct area let your cakes sell themselves!

just my opinion. icon_smile.gif

hth?




Hey that line with "if you need fondant at 10pm....is such an icebreaker!!! I'm gonna use that line when I introduce myself. Thanks for a different point of view!

Rocketgirl899 Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 11:36pm
post #7 of 11

haha. I am glad icon_smile.gif

good luck. post some pics of your cakes!

todolomio Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 11:53pm
post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocketgirl899

haha. I am glad icon_smile.gif

good luck. post some pics of your cakes!




I've tried but I can never post anything. Maybe it's because it's a mac? icon_confused.gif

Rocketgirl899 Posted 26 Jan 2009 , 3:06am
post #9 of 11

nah mac shouldn't matter. make sure you save the photos at a smaller resolution. and save it as a jpeg instead of bmp

kakeladi Posted 26 Jan 2009 , 3:24am
post #10 of 11

.....an introduction would be nice and approach it from the standpoint that perhaps you could work together and help each other out if you get overwhelmed by orders.......

Have you tried making friends w/him? That's what I would think of. It could be great. He may be overwhelmed and be glad to pass on any over-bookings.

todolomio Posted 26 Jan 2009 , 4:20pm
post #11 of 11

No Kakeladi I have not met him yet. I am in the process of becoming legal!!! This week I will have my kitchen inspection icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif I'm excited!!!! All I'm really worried about is that the person does not feel like i'm stepping on his toes... I'm not into this to make a huge business he does have a big business...

Well, bottom line after all your comments I'm gonna introduce myself and let the course of Destiny or the course of nature (God) determine the rest!!!

I know that my prices are lower but, this is what I have always charged icon_rolleyes.gif maybe its time to raise my prices.

Thanks everyone. When I do it I will let you know how it went.

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