Guest Speaking At A Wedding Planner Course- Need Some Help!

Business By kellymarie Updated 1 Nov 2009 , 2:56am by kellymarie

kellymarie Posted 16 Oct 2009 , 5:58pm
post #1 of 23

I am speaking as a vendor next weekend for a Wedding planner's course. I have about 45min to discuss things, and the main topic is to be "what do Cake decorators/bakers expect of a Wedding planner/coordinator?"

What i have on the list so far is That they need to bring their brides and groom in with a realistic budget and a theme, as well as i want to give everyone a list of poisonous flowers, because i think it's some useful info.

Any other suggestions? I like to think i will be helping our industry educate brides and grooms, something we are all usually complaining about at one time or another so let me know your thoughts and i'll pass them along!

Thanks in advance icon_biggrin.gif

22 replies
Mme_K Posted 16 Oct 2009 , 6:27pm
post #2 of 23

What about providing the planners with a list showing the number of servings in the various sizes of tiers. That way a bride will know before hand how large a cake she needs as opposed to how large a cake she's thinking about..... sometimes 2 very different things!

indydebi Posted 17 Oct 2009 , 9:19pm
post #3 of 23

Educate them on how a cake they see on the food channel takes days and multiple man hours and they have a price tag to go with it. ("I'd like this Duff cake and I can spend up to $300!" icon_surprised.gif )

Sheet cakes and fake cakes are NOT always cheaper!

Ordering less cake than expected guests is a stupid idea.

Just because you saw it done on TV, doesn't make it really do-able or even a good idea.

Copyright issues!! Cover this one TWICE!!

A sampling is NOT a dessert party. Leave the 7 bridesmaids at home. It doesn't take a baseball team to decide if you want white or carrot cake.

As someone who LOVES public speaking, I am SO ENVIOUS that you get to do this!! thumbs_up.gif

endymion Posted 17 Oct 2009 , 9:31pm
post #4 of 23

How about double-checking the cake on the day of the event -- keeping kids away from it, etc. And how to deal with cake "disasters" in the best way...

kellymarie Posted 19 Oct 2009 , 6:10pm
post #5 of 23

Thanks ladies for the wonderful advice!! I had a busy weekend, so i didn't get back to this earlier.

ALL of those points are excellent! I will be adding them to my (once short) list lol.

Debi- i wish you could do it for me! lol I get a little nervous speaking, but i figured, why not? I'm getting paid for it, and it's a good way to overcome my public speaking issues! I am sure i'll have a great time...

Keep the ideas coming ladies/gents, i really appreciate the help!

Kelly icon_smile.gif

jillmakescakes Posted 19 Oct 2009 , 7:02pm
post #6 of 23

"Please know that our policies are there for a reason"
I've had planners (or sometimes "planners") question every single policy and make it sound like I was trying to re-invent the wheel with my contract.

KSMill Posted 19 Oct 2009 , 7:53pm
post #7 of 23

You could also cover venue/delivery issues. I don't remember who posted it this summer but someone here basically needed an ATV to deliver an elaborate cake to a wooded area.

julzs71 Posted 19 Oct 2009 , 8:13pm
post #8 of 23

I'm not sre about your laws regulating cake up in canada, but I do know some venues will not let someone bring a cake unless they are licensed and insured.

julzs71 Posted 19 Oct 2009 , 8:14pm
post #9 of 23

oops pushed make sure they find out if they can use their cake decorator.

endymion Posted 19 Oct 2009 , 8:45pm
post #10 of 23

Does the wedding planner coordinate official "approval" of the cake... So that no one can come back later and say the cake did not meet the client's approval?

kellymarie Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 3:13pm
post #11 of 23

Oh wow, lots more great stuff! See, this is why i am making a list lol... i get intimidated in a crowd. Very good points about checking with the venue, i do have delivery issues on the list, and VERY good point about getting approval- i will cover that two times! ha ha

About the policies- i am so all over that!! We don't just pull these things out of thin air ya know!! icon_wink.gif

thanks everyone!!

CoutureCake Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 4:47pm
post #12 of 23

I would definitely do a hand-out "everything you need to know about cakes but didn't know to ask"...

Have samples... Have four slices of cake to show the group plated so they CAN get the visual... One of a 1x1x3 slice, one of a 1x2x4-5 slice, and a 1x3x5 slice, and one 1 1/2 x1 1/2 x 1 1/2 unfilled sheet slice... Explain that different bakers use different sizes for their slice size. A big box cake that charges $1.50/slice is actually less than half of the slice size most bakers will have, etc. etc. The idea being that it gives them a visual and help with price point stuff that even though a cake might be cheaper the bride may be getting significantly less in product... That they need to remember their geometry class lessons for what they're getting for the money.. Also, it's to show that no guest wants the unfilled sheet cake slice when the person next to them is getting the full size ooey goey delish filled slice of cake... "Treat all of the guests the same on cake too -- you wouldn't let your brides feed some guests prime rib and the random rest beef hot dogs, don't short them out on cake portion.."

Like Debi said - the Food Network cakes come with a price tag and that sheets/fake cakes aren't always cheaper than just getting a real cake and having the caterers not cut up a smaller tier and just taking it home with them (btw, ever notice how NO ONE ever goes for the 6" top tier for the dummy...)...

Realistic budgets... Bring a price of a slice of cake from the local restaurants, a nice restaurant in the area, and a linen supper club... Put the price of your cake into perspective compared to going out to eat... People will pay $6-9/slice without thinking when they're at a nice restaurant, but they balk at $3/slice for a basic wedding cake...

Also, that the bride and groom come prepared to the tasting... Bring photos of cakes with design elements they like, their realistic budget, paint color swatch of their colors (doesn't cost them anything and is a lot easier to describe which shade instead of moss green and deep periwinkle blue), photo of the bride's gown if they want those details worked in, copy of the invitation, and an approximate "expected to show" guest count for a more accurate quote.

History of Groom's Cakes... What it is, how much to order, a way to work in the dietary issue cake (i.e. someone has Celiac's and want a cake done for that person)...

Allergy issues and cross-contamination ... Can't put the Celiac/egg free/vegan/etc. cake stacked on top of the regular cake if they want to avoid the cross-contamination factor... Allergy and intolerance issues are a big concern as of late and just something that mentions that you can do your part to only a certain extent but it's also THEM that have a roll in pulling it off...

indydebi Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 6:01pm
post #13 of 23

oh wow, couturecake! I'm saving your post for MY next presentation! Awesome info! Having the slices of cake as a visual is a FABULOUS idea!

julzs71 Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 6:14pm
post #14 of 23

couturecake, awesome job!
I think it would be awesome if you were setting out samples to just serve half of them with a delicious looking cake and half with sheet cakes and see the responses from them.

CoutureCake Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 6:18pm
post #15 of 23
Originally Posted by indydebi

oh wow, couturecake! I'm saving your post for MY next presentation! Awesome info! Having the slices of cake as a visual is a FABULOUS idea!

icon_twisted.gificon_twisted.gif especially if you hand them out to the coordinators that way they get the size difference hint in a hurry...

O-O-O-O-O one other thing... "You have a chair for every butt, a plate for every chair, a meal for every mouth, and a slice of cake for every plate...".. Pointing out - order at least one slice for every guest and if you're between two sizes go for the larger size because people would rather have an extra slice of cake to take home with them or have as a snack later in the evening than to be stuck without getting that first slice after dinner...

jlynnw Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 6:48pm
post #16 of 23

I would include the information for the cheap wedding on a dime garbage. Why it is important to go to the right place for the right items. Yeah, Sam's cake is a lot less, but is it the taste? Make your own as it is just sugar, flour, and eggs. The cost also includes pans, electric, rent, and the years of skill involved in getting the cake. You want to spend the week of the wedding in the kitchen making a cake with your brides instead of finalizing the plans, go for it!

KSMill Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 7:09pm
post #17 of 23

Do you think this would make a good tri-fold handout for bridal shows too? Just some "quick tips"

prterrell Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 7:27pm
post #18 of 23

Hand out of the right way (i.e. Indydebi's way) of cutting a cake?

That they should never ever undermine the value of what cake bakers/decorators do!

The cake table should be very sturdy and well away from the dance floor.

Color swatches for color matching are a must!

sadsmile Posted 20 Oct 2009 , 7:46pm
post #19 of 23

Point out the basic info a baker needs to even give an estimate.

When : to know if the baker even avaliable

How many servings

What type of cake : pound, van, choc

Filling type liked

BC, fondant, chocolate

Bring the topper!

And like mentioned pictures and color swatches.

If the florist is doing flowers: the florist's contact info

cakeandpartygirl Posted 21 Oct 2009 , 3:12am
post #20 of 23

What about fresh flowers on a cake? I was reading it on another thread that hydrangeas and calla lillies are definitely a no no

indydebi Posted 21 Oct 2009 , 3:18am
post #21 of 23
Originally Posted by cakeandpartygirl

What about fresh flowers on a cake? I was reading it on another thread that hydrangeas and calla lillies are definitely a no no

good point. Fresh flowers "can" be ok ..... toxic flowers, such as hydragneas, callas and poinsettas, are the no-no. (It's in my contract that these flowers will not be placed on my cakes.)

just_for_fun Posted 21 Oct 2009 , 3:36am
post #22 of 23

Look on indydebi's blog, she tries to educate brides and grooms (and wedding planners) on so many different issues, you may want to incorporate some into your speech. Good luck!

kellymarie Posted 1 Nov 2009 , 2:56am
post #23 of 23

Thanks for all the fabulous advice!! The seminar went over really well, and the ladies there had tonnes of excellent questions and seemed very realistic so hopefully they can educate the difficult brides well!

I also got told (almost scolded! lol) that my prices were low, so that is a good sign.

Thanks again, i felt WAY more confident because of all the great advice you all put out icon_smile.gif


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