Knocked 'em Dead-The Aftermath

Business By sweetartbakery Updated 1 Feb 2010 , 6:33pm by loriemoms

sweetartbakery Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 11:03am
post #1 of 15

I'm so embarrassed to post this now after I was glowing about all my good press at the show, but I only had one call and zero emails! icon_sad.gif

I was expecting a flood for the way they were talking. I feel so stupid! when do all of you start to see business after a show??

14 replies
karenm0712 Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 11:41am
post #2 of 15

Don't feel embarrassed! It may just take a bit of time for people to actually email or call, but I am sure that the calls will be coming in soon!

muddpuppy Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 1:02pm
post #3 of 15

Not to worry! I'm sure they'll be calling and emailing soon enough! You'll have to hire someone just to return emails!!

pieceacake830 Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 1:17pm
post #4 of 15

I just got a call last week from a show I did last October!.. I had several people take my card, and then call me weeks, and months after the show. Don't get discouraged , they will call...in their own time.

indydebi Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 1:22pm
post #5 of 15

It can take weeks/months to get feedback and results from a show. i had one who called me a year later.

Remember, we're not a shoe store where people buy our product on a whim whether they need it or not. If a bride is at a show in January and her weddign is in November, it would not be unusual for her to contact your in June or July .... 6 months later .... to talk cake.

I have one vendor friend who has a good post-show response but he offers a Bridal Show Special that is good only if they book in the next week.

Auntie_RaRa Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 1:36pm
post #6 of 15

I felt the same way when I first started doing shows four years ago. Response was out of this world, so I was expecting to hear from brides days or weeks later. It can be several weeks to months before brides contact you. It was amazing to meet a bride 4 -7 months later when they met me in March! I do two shows a year - spring and fall, I've had a several to say they met me at both shows. I think more and more are looking earlier than before. Hang in there! thumbs_up.gif

CakeForte Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 2:01pm
post #7 of 15

Any wedding marketing you do is like dropping a stone in a pond....it takes some time to see the ripples. What you do now, you will see the effects anywhere from 3-6 months later. That is why it is so important to always do wedding marketing, even it it's something small.

cakesdivine Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 3:12pm
post #8 of 15

Honestly, I have never had the luxury of getting orders from the big bridal shows. The smaller ones that limit the number of vendors per category tend to do better. Brides from the big ones are so overwhelmed by all the stuff they received unless they are anal retentive and wrote notes about the vendors they liked, chances are they won't remember who did what.

After I did my first show in Houston at the big Bridal Expo, a bride called me and just raved about my cakes tasted, then she said I want that pool table cake you had on display for the grooms cake...Well you guessed it, I didn't HAVE a pool table cake at the show. That was the cake persons booth that was right across from mine, BUT they weren't offering samples because they didn't want to pay the additional permit fee to have samples so the cake she tasted was mine, but the cake she remembered design wise was the other lady's. I still got the order, but it was a bit deflating to the ego that she didn't remember any of my cake designs.

I now only do the small shows. No big ones for me ever again... You never get the investment return back if you aren't a local celebrity or national celebrity caker.

CakeForte Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 3:20pm
post #9 of 15

Yeah....my ROI "AT" shows hasn't been great either. I've also done specials and had samples. I had a "free groom's cake" offer, which was just a basic chocolate cake w/ strawberries, and got one (1) order.

I've also done coupons and such.

However, I will say that with the lead list, I used it for open houses during the year and I DID book clients. I would send out an evite every 5 weeks or so and host a big open house. (I think I booked 10)....at higher prices, without any sort of specials. It was still a ripple effect though because these events were all about 3+ months after the show.

Go figure!

tarheelgirl Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 3:55pm
post #10 of 15

I just received a call back from a show I did in September! It was a little frustrating because there is a ton of work involved for a show but it does take time to see results.

cakesdivine Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 4:03pm
post #11 of 15

Heck I was giving away a free wedding cake with a value of up to $250. AND giving a 20% discount if they booked their date within one week of the show. The girl that one at that show wanted me to do the grooms cake and was having her mom do her wedding cake. The offer was for a wedding cake only and that I had a policy of no other cakes at events other than mine, so she wasn't eligible to receive the award. The next bride I drew did order her cake and it was more than $250 so she was very greatful for the huge discount. But didn't have any takers on the 20% discount offer. They just were not in the mind set to make any committments at that point.

But, smaller shows have yielded me many more returns, and the investment to do them was much less. The one I am doing in 3 weeks where the booths were only $85! And they limit the vendor per category to 4, so I have a 25% chance of actually getting a bride's business. I will have samples available, and have my econoline cake designs on display along with a few other out of the box designs and a slide show of my work running on a digital frame. I am offering a $99 gift certificate this time and also offering my same 20% discount if they book that day (by paying their booking fee of $300). We shall see how it goes.

Auntie_RaRa Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 4:36pm
post #12 of 15

This is a fascinating topic! I find many brides are "looking around" and gathering information when they attend the shows. This is probably why I haven't offered "booking" or "discount specials" for quite sometime nor do I do the "sign up and become eligible for a price". I hate it when people are pushy with me so I do not do that at shows. In the beginning of my cake business, I would go to other bridal shows and play the role of a bride. That was often funny!!

My short forms ask them what service they are looking for, contact inform (phone and email), best method and time to contact them, and if they want to schedule a consultation. I do send follow up emails, but really focus on trying to schedule appointments with those who requested.

I'm doing my first small "exclusive" event next month with no more than 100 brides and only 1 vendor per category. I'm interested to see how that turns out.

jenmat Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 7:10pm
post #13 of 15

I booked a cake yesterday that met me at a Feb 2009 show. Be patient, if you made that much of an impact, they'll come.
I remember the firs show I did (Feb) and oh, it was heaven to get the excitement. Then I go home and wait for the phone to ring. One call, and they cancelled their appointment. Then, slowly over the next few weeks, the emails began to come in. I think I booked 15 brides from that show or something like that.
Brides need time to look through their bag, decide which vendors to look at, then decide when to call, and "oh, the fiancee is on the road next week, so I should wait to call until I know when he can come to a meeting...." Brides aren't just focused on the wedding (even though it seems like they are!) and they still have to go to work, some have kids, etc. They'll call when they get around to it.
Chin up, girl.

snarkybaker Posted 27 Jan 2010 , 10:25pm
post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetartbakery

I'm so embarrassed to post this now after I was glowing about all my good press at the show, but I only had one call and zero emails! icon_sad.gif

I was expecting a flood for the way they were talking. I feel so stupid! when do all of you start to see business after a show??




When you posted about how great the show went, as an old hand, I didn't want to burst your newbie bubble.

Everybody loves you when you are giving them free cake. It happens to us all the time, and after a while you get to know that no meeting was a success unless you leave with a check.

Kudos are are nice, but you can't pay the light bill with them.

loriemoms Posted 1 Feb 2010 , 6:33pm
post #15 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetartbakery

I'm so embarrassed to post this now after I was glowing about all my good press at the show, but I only had one call and zero emails! icon_sad.gif

I was expecting a flood for the way they were talking. I feel so stupid! when do all of you start to see business after a show??




I normally dont see many responses after a show until at least a month..Brides are overwhelmed with emails and mailers and calls and blah blah from other venders. I just let them go through it all and then they call. especailly this year..Brides are holding on tight to those deposit dollars!

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