Ok, so if you are a home based business or have a separate kitchen and have potential clients wanting a tasting, my questions are:
How do you do this?
Do you meet at a certain spot?
They sit in my dining room.
I've met with cake designers in their homes but I recently read on CC that some meet with their clients at the clients' home and take the samples and all paperwork. I like that. My house is too messy with small toys to have anyone over!
That is my problem. I just don't know if I would want anyone at my house. I thought I read on here before about meeting places, but I couldn't find it.
With kids and a husband, my house doesn't stay clean all the time and my dining room is part of the living room, very open plan.
I was just wondering if it would be easier to meet at another location???
I've read where people have met at Starbuck's and such.
I'm not sure how that works out though as I can't see Starbucks allowing people to bring in their own food?
My dining room and living room are combined and we sit at my dining room table. I want my customers to see that they are getting a cake from a clean professional environment even if it is home baked. Some people can be iffy about using a home baker so I like to make sure they can see what they will be getting from me. With that being said, a lot of people do meet customers at other places. I would just make sure that wherever you are meeting them, the place is ok with you taking one of their tables to run your business from their store.
I too have two small children, a husband, and a living room that is messy 80% of the time You have to go thru my living room in order to get to my kitchen.
I take the tasting platter and paperwork to the client's home, or if they are too far away, we meet at some designated spot in between our two homes. It's a lot easier on my family this way since I don't have to kick them out of their own home, and it's easier on me bc I don't have to speed clean as soon as I get home from my regular job (I can clean after I get back from the tasting). So far, the clients that I have had like that fact that they don't have to go anywhere, they can enjoy samples of delicious cake from the comforts of their own home.
I do charge for tastings, $20, but if they book with me that is then applied to their balance as a payment (which clients also like).
Hope that helps
I prefer to do a local delivery than take the time to tidy my house before a customer comes to pick up! The first thing you see when you come in is my messy office! Also, I hate having to make sure the kids are hiding somewhere and keeping the dog quiet! It just seems really unprofessional for customers to see kids lounging in front of the TV or have a dog saying hello. I have a separate kitchen but it's in the basement and I'd have to take customers right through the house to reach it...
I've only done a couple of tastings, and did them both at bookstore Starbucks (they don't seem to notice you so much there!). I need to work out a better way...
I don't have this problem yet. However, when we met with the caterer for my daughter's wedding, the caterer brought a small tupperware container of food for us to taste. We met at a Bob Evans restaraunt and everyone ordered a drink.
They didn't care at all. It's not like we were eating an entire meal in the restaraunt and we made sure we met when the restaraunt wasn't likely to be busy.
My licensed kitchen is in my basement so I sit with clients in the dining room. I do have a 'formal' living and dining room separate so that makes a difference as opposed to more open floor plans.
I set up the table and have display cakes in there. The living room is a bit untidy as we are finishing the rest of the basement for DH office but I straighten up some and folks either don't notice or don't mind. It doesn't seem to be a factor, I book almost everyone I meet with.
I used to put everyone out but now they either sit in the family room and watch TV or upstairs in my room. The kids know to keep quiet or else!
I have met in public places before but usually just talked and I boxed the cake samples for them to take with them. I would generally order a drink or something. HTH!
With 2 young boys, I'm simply not comfortable with having strangers come into my home. I do most of my tastings at Starbucks, they've never said anything (of course, I'm bringing them business as well). City ordinance doesn't allow customer pick-ups because the city doesn't want customer traffic in a neighborhood--I've often wondered if this would apply to tastings as well.
I wonder if our Starbucks or another resturant would mind if I went there. I just don't really want anyone to come to my home.
I often have to meet clients at coffee shops due to the nature of my current job. I take statements, sign forms, etc. and we drink coffee while doing it. The coffee shops don't have a problem with it at all and I've never had to ask permission. They are used to people conducting business over a cup of coffee. I have even met a wedding photographer for my own wedding at Starbucks and she had a huge portfolio with her! It shouldn't be an issue.
p.s. It should go without saying but please buy the client's coffee for them!
My husband helps out with the cleaning of the house. And he takes our 3 year old daughter out shopping to the dollar store or the park while I do the tasting.
Yes it's stressful that I have to be cleaning before we meet with clients, but when the clients leave, I have a clean house!!!!!!! And I love it.