Customer Dilema - Please Help!

Business By karenm0712 Updated 21 Apr 2009 , 1:17pm by karenm0712

karenm0712 Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 10:51am
post #1 of 26

I have an order that is supposed to be due Saturday. I accepted the order which was very last minute because this person is a friend of my DH. My DH's friend sent DH a text message asking if I still sold cakes and could make a cake for 40 for the 18th (text sent this past Friday evening, so 8 days before cake needed). I was irked that he didn't call and sent a text message, but oh well - so Sunday I replied back and said yes (knowing I should say NO) and that I would send him an email that evening which I did (we were out and about for Easter). He replies back via text "thx" but never replies to my email. This brings us to Monday evening and I send another polite email asking a ton of questions and he does reply back but doesn't answer but ONE of the many questions I had! So I send yet ANOTHER email yesterday morning before I leave for work (sent it at 6:30am) and he still hasn't responded. My DH says to pick up the phone and call him - which I probably will do today, but I have a lot going to over the next couple of days - including making my DD's 3rd birthday cake and getting ready for her party.

Here's the email conversation that has been going back and forth:

Email 1 sent Sunday, April 12th

Hi <customer name>,

What kind of cake were you looking for (sheet cake, round, etc.) and what flavor were you wanting?

Here are some options for you as far as cake shape w/standard flavors and
how many they serve:

Double Layer 1/4 sheet cake - serves 48 - $72
1/2 Sheet cake - serves 48 - $72
1/3 Sheet cake - serves 35 - $52.50

Let me know if you want to do something stacked and I can give you pricing on that too.

Take a look at my website for more detailed information and pictures of cakes I have done.

Thanks!

Email 2 sent Monday, April 13th

Hi <customer name>,

Please let me know if you are still interested. If you are, we will need to
work out the final details and payment by end of day tomorrow, Tuesday, April
14th. I have other orders due and need to make sure I have allotted enough time to complete your order. I can send you an invoice through PayPal if you would like to pay with a credit card, otherwise you can pay with cash or money order.

Feel free to give me a call on my cell (enter cell here).
>
> Thanks,

His reply sent late Monday evening

Hey Karen,

Yes I need the cake by the 18th. What my daughter wants is a double layer chocolate cake with wine colored icing and silver trim and writing.
Thanks.

My reply and 3rd email sent Tuesday morning

Thanks <customer name>.

Just to confirm she wants the double layer 9x13 cake iced all in wine (burgandy) color with silver trim and writing? What kind of filling would you like? I can do a plain buttercream or cookies and cream (that's really popular). Also, what is her name and how old will she be? If she has any pictures of cakes she has looked at and likes feel free to send those to me.

Once I have all the details I will send you an invoice today. Did you want me to send you a Paypal invoice or did you want to pay another way?

Thanks!

-END OF EMAIL CHAIN -

So what are your opinions? Like I said I will probably call and give him a chance to tell me over the phone the answers to my questions, but I have to shop today at lunch or right after work for ingredients and can't wait for answers until late tonight...my deadline to him was yesterday end of day!

edited to take out my cell number - THANK YOU! icon_wink.gif

25 replies
Rcrewof10 Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 12:02pm
post #2 of 26

Do you want your cell number on here for all to see??

cylstrial Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 12:16pm
post #3 of 26

Could you call the mother? She might be easier to deal with. It's kind of weird that he doesn't address the questions that you have. I would definitely call him today and get it worked out. Maybe send him a text (I would never suggest this...but since this is how he asked for the cake, maybe this is the channel of communication he likes to us) that says something like, "If I don't hear from you today about the pricing, I regret that I will have to cancel your order".

Good luck!

Deb_ Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 12:16pm
post #4 of 26

Definitely take your cell # off of that post.

I would phone him today and speak in person so that he will answer all your questions.

If you can't reach him by phone today, then I'd send 1 final e-mail saying unless cash payment is received by XXXXday, I won't be able to fill this order.

You need to stop treating him like your husband's friend, he's a client and he's using his friendship to play games.

Personally, I wouldn't give it a second thought if you don't reach him by phone and if he doesn't answer your e-mail.

No money........no cake. icon_biggrin.gif

Auryn Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 12:17pm
post #5 of 26

first go erase that number of yours from the post

second pick up the phone and call him and explain very plainly that you need him to pay you by 5 pm today through paypal so you can go buy the ingredients, and that he has to finalize all the details by then also otherwise you won't be able to do it.
Its already wed. morning.

this kind of thing is the reason I hate email, just pick up the phone.

costumeczar Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 12:19pm
post #6 of 26

Tell him no money by this evening, no cake. By phone, no more emails or texts.

Ditto about the cell phone number!

cathyfowler662 Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 12:21pm
post #7 of 26

First, I would call him and let him know that if you don't work out the details TODAY, that you can not make the cake for him. That includes him paying for it. Sounds like you may need to speak with the daughter as he said it's what she wanted?????

If he doesn't get back to you from your phone call (I would give him a deadline to call back if you get his voicemail) I would call and let him know that you have cancelled his order as you have other orders due, and now time is too tight to give the cake the attention that it would need.

I hope this helps.....good luck!!

Oh, I would edit your first post and take your cell number out. icon_smile.gif

Susie53 Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 12:27pm
post #8 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by costumeczar

Tell him no money by this evening, no cake. By phone, no more emails or texts.

Ditto about the cell phone number!




Ditto!

leah_s Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 1:31pm
post #9 of 26

Wine colored icing on the entire cake? Srsly? You know that's gonna stain everyone's lips and teeth, right?

costumeczar Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 2:12pm
post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by leahs

Wine colored icing on the entire cake? Srsly? You know that's gonna stain everyone's lips and teeth, right?




Not to mention how disgusting it's going to taste!

Susie53 Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 2:16pm
post #11 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by costumeczar

Quote:
Originally Posted by leahs

Wine colored icing on the entire cake? Srsly? You know that's gonna stain everyone's lips and teeth, right?



Not to mention how disgusting it's going to taste!





I have to agree!

cakesdivine Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 2:37pm
post #12 of 26

If she has an airbrush she can airbrush the color on, it is less likely to stain to the degree a wine colored icing with gel paste would. Good luck with this one Karen. Sometimes you just have to take the bull by the horns icon_smile.gif

karenm0712 Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 4:58pm
post #13 of 26

UPDATE!

I called and talked to him asked him a bunch of questions, told him my concern with the all wine colored buttercream. I told him that I needed payment and answers to my questions (he said he would call his daughter) no later than 4:45PM today. Not even 30 minutes after we talked did I get a text message saying that I had free reign over the cake, but I also got payment too! Woo Hoo!

Thanks everyone for your advice and support. Will definitely post the final cake! icon_smile.gif

bbmom Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 5:18pm
post #14 of 26

Free reign and payment...YEAHHHHHH!

lostincake Posted 15 Apr 2009 , 5:33pm
post #15 of 26

I love free reign! Glad it all worked out for you.

Sometimes people just don't realize all the details that need to be ironed out when it comes to custom cakes. Most cake civilians (as indydebi calls them) are used to just going to the nearest grocery store and picking up a pre-made cake, so it's a mind-shift for most.

karenm0712 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 11:33pm
post #16 of 26

Here's the cake that I ended up making for my DH's friend. I broke down and started texting him after we had talked on the phone and he would text me right back - weird...I am NOT a texting kind of person....well NOT with cake orders. icon_biggrin.gif

Thanks again for everyone's advice - I ended up very pleased with the end result.

Okay - well I can't get it to post. It's the only wine and silver cake in my pics. icon_smile.gif

Alice1230 Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 11:58pm
post #17 of 26

Lovely! How did you do the lettering?

Getus Posted 19 Apr 2009 , 11:58pm
post #18 of 26

I can't believe nobody saw the flaw with this from the beginning....it was a man ordering the cake!
Now, I am NOT bashing men...it's just that men have no clue about all the details of cakes....not a clue. Size, flavor, fillings, colors...my DH would have been beside himself trying to UNDERSTAND those terms, much less actually make a decision! LOL.
Cake civilians are often clueless...but a male cake civilian...well, that's almost like talking a foreign language to him. He hears: blah, blah, blah, cake, blah, blah, blah, money. period.
I'm glad it all worked out okay! thumbs_up.gif

bbmom Posted 20 Apr 2009 , 12:00am
post #19 of 26

Yes, it came out really nice, plain and simple, but so neat and perfectly done. Good Job

clovely Posted 20 Apr 2009 , 12:09am
post #20 of 26

I'm sorry, I can't find it.

solascakes Posted 20 Apr 2009 , 12:12am
post #21 of 26

clovely the cake is in her photos,its the first one.
The cake is really lovely.

zoomzone Posted 20 Apr 2009 , 12:31am
post #22 of 26

Cake looks lovely! You did a great job thumbs_up.gif

clovely Posted 20 Apr 2009 , 12:38am
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alice1230

Lovely! How did you do the lettering?




Thanks! In the thumbnail that looked chocolate and pink to me. When I enlarged it, I see that it's wine and silver. Very nice! I'm quite sure the man had no clue what he wanted and I think you couldn't have gone wrong with what you came up with. Great "read" of the very vague situation.

AKA_cupcakeshoppe Posted 20 Apr 2009 , 1:23am
post #24 of 26

what a lovely cake! the lettering is gorgeous!

indydebi Posted 20 Apr 2009 , 3:12am
post #25 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Getus

I can't believe nobody saw the flaw with this from the beginning....it was a man ordering the cake!
Now, I am NOT bashing men...it's just that men have no clue about all the details of cakes....not a clue. Size, flavor, fillings, colors...my DH would have been beside himself trying to UNDERSTAND those terms, much less actually make a decision! LOL.
Cake civilians are often clueless...but a male cake civilian...well, that's almost like talking a foreign language to him. He hears: blah, blah, blah, cake, blah, blah, blah, money. period.
I'm glad it all worked out okay! thumbs_up.gif



I just saw this thread and thought the same thing. He's not only a guy but a DAD! That's double clueless!! icon_lol.gif To them it's "just a cake". To them, it's a fancy doughnut .... sweet, breadlike, and icing on top. And when you dispute that, they respond with "what? what?" icon_confused.gif

To a guy, it's "I need a cake. CHocolate (it's always chocolate). Round. With white sweet stuff on top." They're lucky if they know what day they need it.

Not man-bashing ... but I've been married a LO-O-O-O-NG time!!! icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

karenm0712 Posted 21 Apr 2009 , 1:17pm
post #26 of 26

Thanks everyone for your comments and replies - I didn't get any notifications on this post, so didn't know people were still responding!

Alice1230 - for the lettering I used my FMM tappits and used a very light fondant and then painted them silver (lemon extract w/silver luster dust) - same for the dots. icon_smile.gif It was very messy - but got the job done!

I know, men, they just don't get it and I know only my DH really "gets" it (the cake world that is). icon_smile.gif I have to keep telling myself that people are so used to ordering last minute from the grocery stores and they need to be groomed to my cake way of thinking! icon_wink.gif But it was my own crazy fault for accepting the order last minute too. I am just glad I can come here for advice, ideas, and to vent!

Have a great day everyone!

Quote by @%username% on %date%

%body%