Hi Everyone -
I have an event coming soon that I need to prepare for. I have never done one of these shows so I'm not sure how much to bring. There will be 300 tickets sold for this charity event. I will be allowed to sell, hand out samples, and offer a basket/gift for auction.
I have asked if there will be other similar vendors but I have not gotten a response yet. And, I'm not sure if it matters anyway. At this time, my target is to offer a variety of specialty cookies sold in a gift box or as a favor. Also, I'm offering custom cut outs, being sold as favors. This is my long term online goal. However, to supplement while I grow online, I want to offer specialty cookies for events & of course the favors locally.
I am making progress on the visual & marketing. Meaning: business cards, signs, displays/baskets, 2 picture books, and a e-mail list. I offer a nice selection of cookies but have it narrowed down to a variety of flavor combinations for drop cookies, higher end technique type cookies, and my classics with a twist. Also, I'm offering 2 cut outs (standard sugar with RI & choc with MMF)
Here are my uncertainties:
(1) How many cookies for sampling? 3 per person? Should I plan on EVERYONE at least taking a sample?
(2) Got any ideas for ease of sampling? I plan on heat sealing the cut outs and placing them in separate baskets with tent card name tags. The baskets will be set up next to finished favor designs. But, the specialty cookies - - - how would you go about this?
(3) Selling - should I offer the gift boxes I want to sell? Would just a bottom oragami type box slid into a cello bag be okay? I could seal and top it with a nice paper tag with logo & info.
(4) Long term goal - I have a "keep it simple" problem. I don't want to present myself as a brick and morter bakery - I'm under OH cottage law out of my home. So, I want to deliver cookies/favors in bulk locally or have people order gift boxes from the site.
As I work along, the fog is clearing...I just thought some more experienced people might be clued in a bit better. Sorry so long - thanks for your time!
Hm, I probably can't be a ton of help because my last show was just samples. I will say that 300 people signed up and they all came with a pose! I had 500-600 samples and they were gone. most people only took one flavor. i think that people don't want to look like pigs. I ran out because of all the guests of the guests! it did get me right until the end though. I have no idea about product packaging and selling right then and there. good luck though!
your cookies are amazing, definitely a strong point for you. I can tell you what I do, being an Ohioan and under the cottage food laws to combat the issue of people worrying about you having a brick and mortar............tell them nothing is premade, everything is custom, to order!!! Makes you sound more chic instead of sounding like you're too small to have a storefront lol.
As for your samples, if cookies is what you want to sell....I would put out several examples of what you can do, along with different types of packaging that you offer (these are for display purposes only)........then have some cookies cut up into a bite size for sampling. You could place each chunk into a little paper liner and put them out on a silver tray?
I wouldn't offer a WHOLE cookie, even a small one as a sample (way too time consuming)
If you're wanting to sell things on the spot, go for it, but be prepared to haul it all back home and figure out what to do with them if they don't sell! (just in case)
Thanks so much for the input! I'm sure I'm going to have way too much...this is what I tend to do. But, I thought about that. I am going to have a list of places to drop off a small sampler...should I have any extras. Like, hair salons, bridal shops, catering places.
KHalstead - I like the custom shtick. I will definitely practice what I will say to folks. I am talking with a couple printers this week about signs and business cards. I just want something I can hang on the front of the table (there are no walls available) - if they look like quality, maybe my custom thing will be more believable. The small cookie sample is a great idea. Maybe I could find a small cookie scoop for the drops & then cut my mini tarts in half? I will have cut out favor designs for display only. But, maybe I should include 2 "boxes" for how the specialty cookies may come if they want those in a favor. I think I'll go with prepackaged samplers for sale. That way they are already ready for drop off if they don't go.
Thanks for the tips! I'll keep thinking.
Sweetartbakery - Holy Shamoly! That's a lot of samples to have. I should ask if these tickets include a guest. That will make a difference for sure.
Anyone else have thoughts? I'm all about collecting information.....