If Booked....

Business By Kitagrl Updated 1 May 2010 , 3:10pm by Kitagrl

Kitagrl Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 10:33pm
post #1 of 18

When someone leaves a voicemail that they need a cake on a date I'm no longer taking orders for...do I NOT call them back and risk them thinking I have bad business practices, or DO call back but then they get all excited and ready to order a cake and then I tell them I am booked and they get upset and feel stupid.

Anybody have ideas? Just called a lady back, she called me three times today (two voicemails) while I was out..called her back tonight only to have to break it to her I'm booked for May. icon_sad.gif

17 replies
weirkd Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 10:45pm
post #2 of 18

Unless you list a calendar on your website when your free, I think as long as you return the phone call and tell them that your booked thats the most professional thing to do. If you dont return their call then to me that is being unprofessional and that would upset them more! But thats just me!

JulieMN Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 10:46pm
post #3 of 18

If I were the potential client, I would want to know so that I could make other arrangements. While I would be disappointed that I couldn't have a cake from you for that specific occasion, because you took the time to tell me, I would likely come back and order from you for a future event.

If I tried and tried to reach you...and you didn't get back to me....I wouldn't try again in the future....you would have lost my business entirely...and likely my friends/family would have heard about my experience.

HTH

Kitagrl Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 10:47pm
post #4 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by JulieMN

If I were the potential client, I would want to know so that I could make other arrangements. While I would be disappointed that I couldn't have a cake from you for that specific occasion, because you took the time to tell me, I would likely come back and order from you for a future event.

If I tried and tried to reach you...and you didn't get back to me....I wouldn't try again in the future....you would have lost my business entirely...and likely my friends/family would have heard about my experience.

HTH




I thought so...so I always call back...but when I do call back they seem like they feel like a fool and they quickly say good bye and they seem upset.

Oh well.

RobynLM Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 10:48pm
post #5 of 18

IMO, the best business practice would be to return every inquiry from any customer - regardless of the news!

tracycakes Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 10:53pm
post #6 of 18

I do call them back and let them know I am booked. Sometimes, if they have a small order, I will go ahead and book it anyway.

Kitagrl Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 10:57pm
post #7 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by tracycakes

I do call them back and let them know I am booked. Sometimes, if they have a small order, I will go ahead and book it anyway.




LOL I am the opposite....I will only add an order like that if its a nice big money making one. haha.

I was at the point awhile back I was going to say "yes" to every order if it killed me. But now I've changed to where I'm just going to cut things off when I think I am busy enough for a weekend, or if I have too much going on. No use killing myself and making my family suffer.

JulieMN Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 11:00pm
post #8 of 18

[quote="Kitagrl
.but when I do call back they seem like they feel like a fool and they quickly say good bye and they seem upset. [/quote]

You do beautiful work....I am sure that they are so disappointed that they can't have your cake this time and are (while speaking with you) processing that disappointment and starting to rethink their game plan...."what do I do now?" People often don't understand how much time is involved in the whole process of a cake...and how far in advance an order needs to be placed. When they hear that you can't do it....may be worried they will not be able to find anyone and will end up with a grocery store sheet cake.

costumeczar Posted 26 Apr 2010 , 11:23pm
post #9 of 18

I agree that you should always call back just so that they can make other arrangements.

jillmakescakes Posted 27 Apr 2010 , 12:22am
post #10 of 18

I always let people know if we are booked, how much notice we typically need and if possible, I can refer them to another trusted baker in the area. I always end the message/convo with "We hope that you will still consider us for your next event."

kellertur Posted 27 Apr 2010 , 2:32am
post #11 of 18

I agree, always call so they can have an answer. If you can get a hold of them, that is.

ladyonzlake Posted 27 Apr 2010 , 2:44am
post #12 of 18

I always call back and refer them to my friendly "competitors". I have a group of friends and acquaintances that are decorators and we help each other out with referrals when we're booked.

ChristysCakes88 Posted 27 Apr 2010 , 2:58am
post #13 of 18

I agree with Julie. Always call back so they will be more likely to come to you in the future.

quietude Posted 27 Apr 2010 , 3:10am
post #14 of 18

I too call back out of common courtesy to the customer. I've actually had someone whom I've had to tell that I was booked refer me to their friends/family or book themselves for future orders. If nothing else, it lets them know you're professional and that the early bird gets the worm!

Rose_N_Crantz Posted 1 May 2010 , 9:15am
post #15 of 18

It kinda makes me wonder if it's a good idea to mention on your business answering machine/voicemail what your availability looks like.

"Thank you for calling XYZ Custom Cakes. I'm up to my ears in frosting right now but if you leave a short message and a phone number I'll get back to you as soon as I can. I am currently booked for this weekend and next" -or- "my next available date to book a cake is XX/XX."

You'd obviously have to update this each week so maybe it would be too much of a hassle. Or you might get people that would assume you're too busy for their order and just not bother when you probably could have taken the order. Hmmm.

Don't mind me, just thinking on my keyboard here. . .

ladyonzlake Posted 1 May 2010 , 1:29pm
post #16 of 18

My availability is on my website

tarheelgirl Posted 1 May 2010 , 2:01pm
post #17 of 18

I always call them back so they can make other arrangements. I do have on my website that the order should be placed at least 2 weeks prior to their event no later then a week. Sometimes that still not enough notice. I only do a certain amount of servings in one week. Thinking of putting a calendar on my page also.

Kitagrl Posted 1 May 2010 , 3:10pm
post #18 of 18

I have had to refer a few out lately, and also I had one lady tell me she was glad to hear a local business was busy...

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