I am working with a local cafe (to be legal) and she is letting me put a display cake, business cards and a portfolio out and I wanted to know what you thought the best way to create the portfolio.
Should I just do a white, plastic binder or should I get a nice, clothe scrapbook? (the first display cake got a bit dingy after awhile which is why I wondered if the plastic was more realistic.) Also, do you just put nice pictures of your best work or do you basically scrapbook the pages with information and prices? I don't want to run into problems by posting the prices so I was thinking of having a page in the back with my current prices - something I could remove and re-print with updates, etc.
Thanks in advance
I'd go for a plastic binder over a cloth binder just so you can wipe it down if need be. There are just a variety available now that you do not have to just get plain ones, you can get some really pretty patterned ones now to. The other option is to get a nice photo album (non-cloth) that can accommodate full size pics/paper. Either way I would use paper protects for the pics and the price list (which I agree would be better on the back so it's easier to update if need be).
Here some pics of the binders I was referring to (I'm sure there's plenty more available I just added the first pic I found):
I think it would be an idea for your portfolio to reflect the type of image you want to project about your business. If you want to be very contemporary, maybe something sleek and white. If you want your image to be much more personal, maybe a scrapbook. I think something with plastic protection would be a great idea. If you offer interesting gourmet flavours, maybe assign a page to detailing these. As for your prices, maybe word it with 'prices from ....' or 'price upon asking' so you aren't commited to a set price. It probably depends on your prices. If you know your prices are highly competitive, include them. If your prices are a bit higher and usually require an explanation of how the price is reached then I would consider giving them out on request. It also probably depends how you sell - some people have an awesome personality and can usually seal a deal once someone talks to them because the customer likes them and wants to give them their business (my SIL is great at this). I think the objective is to try to get people talking to you so that you can make the sale. I should qualify my advice by saying that I don't have a cake business (or any business - I'm not a risk taker ... yet), these are just business principles learnt from working in retail and teaching entrepreneurial skills to high schoolers. We were always taught to try to get the person into the store and talking to you as you are much more likely to make the sale.
I would go for the white binder idea - but: You have to get the people to open it. I would choose the best / most extravagant / showy cake, print it full size and glue it on top. Cover with clear contact paper.
As for the pages themselves: I would separate the photos in parts - children's cakes, birthday cakes, wedding cakes, .... Laminate each page - it is much more durable and in the long run cheaper than printing it over. On each page, I would print either my logo, or the name of business. I would number the cakes - for example CH001 (Children's Nr. 1). Ideally, I would try to print the number on top of my logo, if possible. If you don't have one, this would be an opportunity to design one.
After each section, I would print one page with the information in simple form - for example:
Cakes as seen:
CH001, vanilla cake with chocolate filling, fondant, serves xxx, price xxx. Here I agree - the price can go both ways. It is nice to see it, but you could loose some customers. Try to have cakes in your portfolio in good price range - starting with "prices for the small people" and going to the luxury items.
At the end of your folder, I would add your business cards - you want that the people find them as easy as they can, not needing to go and look for them. I would even go a step farther. I would print index card sized pages with all the information from your business card but also add something like small cake order form - where the customer can straight away write their wishes. For example - birthday / wedding cake; list of flavors; list of fillings; due date. And important - how far in advance the cake needs to be ordered!
Good luck to you with your decision!
Thank you all for the great ideas - I will absolutely use them. I think I will go with a clear binder and put the showstopper cake on the front, each page in sleeves and order some postcards from VistaPrint for them to take for easy ordering, etc.
In additionl, the cafe gave me the whole top of the bakery case for display cake. book and a small stand for business cards! thanks again
Keeping in mind that I am way small potatoes...
I run the food stand at my father in law's auction house and I just recently got a digital picture frame that plays all night long. People have spent a lot of time just sitting their watching the cakes go by. They seem to think it was an awesome idea. I had scrapbook type album, but it was a PITA to keep having pics printed and put them in there. With the digital picture frame, all I do is save the new pic to the SD card and press play. Don't know if that's something you think would work for you or not. For me, since everyone already knows me there, it works great. People notice it right away, too. No need to open up a book and flip through all the pages. They say it catches their eye...
What a great idea jonahsmom!
That is a fantastic idea jonahsmom. I am getting ready to set up a large display. And my book is to much of a pain for people passing by to look at. I am going with the pix frame. Thanks a million for the idea.
Great idea I love it! How do those run? If they run off electricity, I might be outta luck because she is so incredibly tapped out of plugs, lol, every time I work there I have to bring my own grounded plug!
Also, can you get these for cheap or are these all $50+. I am hoping I could rig it to run on rechargeable batteries but I totally doubt it.....I will have to talk to her tomorrow thanks again!
The one that I bought does have to be plugged in. I don't remember seeing battery powered anything for it! But if you can rig it up - GREAT!
I did NOT want to spend a ton of money, so I shopped around. I found mine (7") at Aldi's for $30! That's cheaper than any other ones I found (of the same size anyway!).