nmarie Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 4:33pm
post #1 of

Hello all!

I am looking to start a bakery that specializes in two quite different areas:
* Custom cakes and cupcakes, and other "people" desserts.
* Organic and vegetarian dog treats and other retail like collars, clothes, and stuff for dog owners like dog-loving plaques for the home, etc.

I plan to run the whole show from my home kitchen. icon_biggrin.gif

Im trying to come up with two good names something like Divine Delights (which would be the main name) and Doggie Delights or something to that affect. Then I can have two websites - DivineDelights.com, where Id have the customer choose between going forward for people desserts, or go to the DoggieDelights.com site for dog stuff. Obviously both domain names would need to be available (the ones in this example aren't icon_cry.gif), and the main name would need to be non-restrictive, so it could apply to a dog-centered company and a people-centered company.

Oh, I live in Massachusetts if that helps.

Oh - and I'm not necessarily against having one name for both, I just couldn't think of any name that would sufficiently encompass both aspects of a business like that.

Id really appreciate any input Thanks in advance icon_smile.gif

43 replies
jason_kraft Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 6:21pm
post #2 of

Maybe it's just me, but it seems a little weird to buy baked goods from a company that also makes dog treats. If you do plan on pursuing both markets, I would advise setting them up as two completely different businesses with no cross-promotion.

nmarie Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 6:33pm
post #3 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonkraft

Maybe it's just me, but it seems a little weird to buy baked goods from a company that also makes dog treats. If you do plan on pursuing both markets, I would advise setting them up as two completely different businesses with no cross-promotion.




jasonkraft,

This is another type of feedback I was looking for. Okay, that is what I am going to do then. So the names don't need to be related or anything.

Thanks so much for posting an honest, and in turn very valuable reply!

nmarie Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:10pm
post #4 of

Anybody else have any ideas?

-K8memphis Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:18pm
post #5 of

You are spreading yourself pretty thin.

My suggestion is to focus on one thing and do that really really well.

Edit, NMarie.

KalliCakes Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:29pm
post #6 of

Hi! I thought about doing a similar thing. But, instead of going both ways, I've concentrated on creating people cakes. But to satisfy the desire for creating doggie treats, I donate dog biscuits in cute decorated bags to the local humane society when they have fund raising events. You'll find that people who are crazy in love with their dogs won't think twice about buying a human cake from you--but it doesn't seem to work the other way around.

Good luck!!! :0)

jen1977 Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:31pm
post #7 of

My opinion is that I find any food that you feed to a dog nasty, and wouldn't want to order a cake from the same person my neighbor could order their dog treats from. I have a dog, and won't touch his food, it totally grosses me out. I would market them as two different companies, but I'm not even sure that as a customer, I found out they were being made in the same kitchen, by the same person, but under two different companies that I would order a cake from them. I understand that most homemade dog treats are made from peanut butter and other things that people eat, but it still grosses me out, sorry. I hope I haven't been too harsh....I just find things that dogs eat nasty.

kweenofengland Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:46pm
post #8 of

I questioned whether or not the health department would even allow this. but i agree with others on doing seperate businesses. just doesnt sound right? sorry!

nmarie Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:47pm
post #9 of

Thanks for everybody's wonderful input!!!! icon_biggrin.gif

jen1977: I absolutely don't think that you were too harsh! I always appreciate honest input (as all of us bakers must) thumbs_up.gif It's funny because I posted this on a forum on cheftalk.com - here: http://www.cheftalk.com/forum/thread/63197/name-for-a-bakery-i-know-you-ve-seen-it-a-thousand-times-but-this-one-s-different - and someone said exactly the same thing.

Taking that into consideration and the comments made by -K8memphis and KnticEnerG, I think you all are right. I should focus on one thing or the other. KnticEnerG, wouldn't it be nice to be able to do it all?! icon_wink.gif

Now I guess I have a big decision to make... Dogs or people... Hmmm icon_lol.gif

KnticEnerG, do you have any regrets in chosing the people thing over the dog thing?

Does anyone have any input on which business would be more successful? I am hoping to be able to do it full time in the future but obviously I'll need to work at my current job full time and do the business part time in the beginning.

lchristi27 Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:49pm

We have a bakery here in Minneapolis that serves both dog treats and people treats. I havent been there yet, but hear it goes over really well. People stop by for a cupcake and get a treat for their dog, so I think you have a great idea. Not sure about how it will go in a home bakery though.

Good luck! If I were closer I'd buy Doggie treat for my baby icon_biggrin.gif

nmarie Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:54pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by kweenofengland

I questioned whether or not the health department would even allow this. but i agree with others on doing seperate businesses. just doesnt sound right? sorry!




No need to apologize, I wanted honest input, so thank you for being honest icon_smile.gif

I think the health department would allow it, considering I'd be using natural "people" ingredients for the dog treats - flour, apples, peanut butter, etc. I would definitely need to look into it though if I ever did pursue both sides - thanks for the suggestion!

jason_kraft Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:56pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by nmarie

Does anyone have any input on which business would be more successful? I am hoping to be able to do it full time in the future but obviously I'll need to work at my current job full time and do the business part time in the beginning.



IMO the dog treats business will be very difficult to execute successfully...why would people come to your home to buy dog treats and other products instead of picking them up for less at PetSmart or Wal*mart? Organic and upscale dog treats can even be found in grocery stores these days.

A more small-scale venture specializing in customized pet products might work, you could sell on Etsy.com as well as locally.

For the bakery business, you should start with a business plan and take a look at local market conditions, competitors, costs, and pricing structures.

Texas_Rose Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:56pm

You should look into how many custom bakers there are in your area, and how many gourmet dog bakeries...it might be better to be the only gourmet dog bakery than the 50th custom cake bakery.

nmarie Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 8:59pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by lchristi27

We have a bakery here in Minneapolis that serves both dog treats and people treats. I havent been there yet, but hear it goes over really well. People stop by for a cupcake and get a treat for their dog, so I think you have a great idea. Not sure about how it will go in a home bakery though.

Good luck! If I were closer I'd buy Doggie treat for my baby icon_biggrin.gif




I wish I had a store front. I agree that a brick and mortar situation would probably go over a bit better with that combination - so people could see that it was all just human food - not Pedigree kibbles accidently getting dropped into cake batter icon_lol.gif I had a feeling that some people may get weirded out by the mixture of both people and dog treats! Totally understand it, though!

If I go the dog way I will let you know and maybe you can get some treats from my site icon_smile.gif

nmarie Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 9:08pm
Quote:
Quote:

You should look into how many custom bakers there are in your area, and how many gourmet dog bakeries...it might be better to be the only gourmet dog bakery than the 50th custom cake bakery.




Very good idea. I will have to look into that.

There are a few prominent bakeries in the area but I don't see much in custom cakes and cupcakes. They do more like pies and hearty baked products. I feel like the cake decorating industry is booming due to custom cake related TV shows, but I also think that right now is a bad time for people in general, in terms of finances, so maybe that's why I'm afraid that it wouldn't do that well. Another downer about the cake decorating vs. the online dog boutique is that I can only sell the cakes locally - obviously you can't ship a big ol' cake icon_lol.gif

I know there are a couple of dog boutiques in the area but I also know the woman who runs them - let's just say she does a bad job icon_razz.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonkraft

Quote:
Originally Posted by nmarie

Does anyone have any input on which business would be more successful? I am hoping to be able to do it full time in the future but obviously I'll need to work at my current job full time and do the business part time in the beginning.


IMO the dog treats business will be very difficult to execute successfully...why would people come to your home to buy dog treats and other products instead of picking them up for less at PetSmart or Wal*mart? Organic and upscale dog treats can even be found in grocery stores these days.

A more small-scale venture specializing in customized pet products might work, you could sell on Etsy.com as well as locally.

For the bakery business, you should start with a business plan and take a look at local market conditions, competitors, costs, and pricing structures.




Very true... However, if I went the dog way, I would sell everything either via a website and farmers markets to customers or wholesale to local pet boutiques.

Thanks for the input!

-K8memphis Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 9:17pm

I know someone who did wholesale organic dog treats. The shelf life was less than desirable so just a little particle to toss in the idea pot.

Texas_Rose Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 9:19pm

There's a pet store here that sells gourmet dog treats by the pound...they make the whole store smell so good that my kids beg for them, not realizing those are dog treats. That's the kind of thing I'm imagining with the custom dog treat business...also doggy birthday cakes. Things you can't get at Walmart or the grocery store.

-K8memphis Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 9:28pm

Too funny!!!!! icon_lol.gif

costumeczar Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 11:32pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas_Rose

There's a pet store here that sells gourmet dog treats by the pound...they make the whole store smell so good that my kids beg for them, not realizing those are dog treats. That's the kind of thing I'm imagining with the custom dog treat business...also doggy birthday cakes. Things you can't get at Walmart or the grocery store.




That's what I was thinking too...There are dog treats that are made from totally human-edible ingredients. If you market it that way you could have a slogan that played off the idea that it was for the dogs but good enough for people, too. If someone bought a "people" cake you could ask if they had a dog when they placed the order, and give them a sample of the dog treats when they picked it up. Maybe you could make the dog treats in the shape of cupcakes or cookies.

KalliCakes Posted 3 Dec 2010 , 11:50pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by nmarie

Thanks for everybody's wonderful input!!!! icon_biggrin.gif

jen1977: I absolutely don't think that you were too harsh! I always appreciate honest input (as all of us bakers must) thumbs_up.gif It's funny because I posted this on a forum on cheftalk.com - here: http://www.cheftalk.com/forum/thread/63197/name-for-a-bakery-i-know-you-ve-seen-it-a-thousand-times-but-this-one-s-different - and someone said exactly the same thing.

Taking that into consideration and the comments made by -K8memphis and KnticEnerG, I think you all are right. I should focus on one thing or the other. KnticEnerG, wouldn't it be nice to be able to do it all?! icon_wink.gif

Now I guess I have a big decision to make... Dogs or people... Hmmm icon_lol.gif

KnticEnerG, do you have any regrets in chosing the people thing over the dog thing?

Does anyone have any input on which business would be more successful? I am hoping to be able to do it full time in the future but obviously I'll need to work at my current job full time and do the business part time in the beginning.




Hi nmarie--
I don't have any regrets choosing the people over the dogs for profit. More creativity comes with the cake designs so it helps ease potential boredom. :0) Good luck. You probably could do both. I mean, the recipes I use for dog biscuits are for human consumption, so it's just a really dry cookie for dogs, so you really shouldn't have a problem doing both. :0)

Tomoore Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 12:13am
Quote:
Originally Posted by lchristi27

We have a bakery here in Minneapolis that serves both dog treats and people treats. I havent been there yet, but hear it goes over really well. People stop by for a cupcake and get a treat for their dog, so I think you have a great idea. Not sure about how it will go in a home bakery though.

Good luck! If I were closer I'd buy Doggie treat for my baby icon_biggrin.gif




I don't know how this would work for you, but I do manage a bakery that is in a very dog friendly community and is very well known for their dog treats, bread and cupcakes. Many of our guests will add 6-10 dog treats to their bread or cupcake orders. I'd say we sell at least 650 or so per week.

AmandaLP Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 2:31am

I am not sure how popular they are, but a local cupcake truck sells "pup cakes" for dogs. They are parked outside of a park that has a dog run, so I could see that appeal.

Ruth0209 Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 3:34am
Quote:
Originally Posted by nmarie

Hello all!

I am looking to start a bakery that specializes in two quite different areas:
* Custom cakes and cupcakes, and other "people" desserts.
* Organic and vegetarian dog treats and other retail like collars, clothes, and stuff for dog owners like dog-loving plaques for the home, etc.

I plan to run the whole show from my home kitchen. icon_biggrin.gif

Im trying to come up with two good names something like Divine Delights (which would be the main name) and Doggie Delights or something to that affect. Then I can have two websites - DivineDelights.com, where Id have the customer choose between going forward for people desserts, or go to the DoggieDelights.com site for dog stuff. Obviously both domain names would need to be available (the ones in this example aren't icon_cry.gif), and the main name would need to be non-restrictive, so it could apply to a dog-centered company and a people-centered company.

Oh, I live in Massachusetts if that helps.

Oh - and I'm not necessarily against having one name for both, I just couldn't think of any name that would sufficiently encompass both aspects of a business like that.

Id really appreciate any input Thanks in advance icon_smile.gif



How about People Sweets and Doggie Treats.

nmarie Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 4:44am
Quote:
Originally Posted by -K8memphis

I know someone who did wholesale organic dog treats. The shelf life was less than desirable so just a little particle to toss in the idea pot.




Hmm, yeah I currently only make a few at a time for my dogs and my mother's dogs so they don't have a chance to go bad icon_biggrin.gif

I'd have to check out how long they'd actually last. Good point!

nmarie Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 4:50am
Quote:
Originally Posted by costumeczar

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas_Rose

There's a pet store here that sells gourmet dog treats by the pound...they make the whole store smell so good that my kids beg for them, not realizing those are dog treats. That's the kind of thing I'm imagining with the custom dog treat business...also doggy birthday cakes. Things you can't get at Walmart or the grocery store.



That's what I was thinking too...There are dog treats that are made from totally human-edible ingredients. If you market it that way you could have a slogan that played off the idea that it was for the dogs but good enough for people, too. If someone bought a "people" cake you could ask if they had a dog when they placed the order, and give them a sample of the dog treats when they picked it up. Maybe you could make the dog treats in the shape of cupcakes or cookies.




That's too funny Texas_Rose! They do smell awfully good! And I'd definitely decorate them extravagantly and make custom orders as well - like with the dog's name, or whatever the customer wanted. Doggie birthday cakes - what a great idea! I bet I could make doggie cakes and cupcakes look just like people cakes and cupcakes! I'll have to give that a try!

Yeah what's great about it is that it's 100% people-edible (and they do smell good so people WANT to eat them) icon_smile.gif That's like what I was thinking with the cross-promotion... Buy a cake, get a sample of dog treats... etc. It seems like the majority of people think that may be a bad idea... Maybe I could find a way to do both... Hmmmmm!

nmarie Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 5:08am
Quote:
Originally Posted by KnticEnerG

Quote:
Originally Posted by nmarie

Thanks for everybody's wonderful input!!!! icon_biggrin.gif

jen1977: I absolutely don't think that you were too harsh! I always appreciate honest input (as all of us bakers must) thumbs_up.gif It's funny because I posted this on a forum on cheftalk.com - here: http://www.cheftalk.com/forum/thread/63197/name-for-a-bakery-i-know-you-ve-seen-it-a-thousand-times-but-this-one-s-different - and someone said exactly the same thing.

Taking that into consideration and the comments made by -K8memphis and KnticEnerG, I think you all are right. I should focus on one thing or the other. KnticEnerG, wouldn't it be nice to be able to do it all?! icon_wink.gif

Now I guess I have a big decision to make... Dogs or people... Hmmm icon_lol.gif

KnticEnerG, do you have any regrets in chosing the people thing over the dog thing?

Does anyone have any input on which business would be more successful? I am hoping to be able to do it full time in the future but obviously I'll need to work at my current job full time and do the business part time in the beginning.



Hi nmarie--
I don't have any regrets choosing the people over the dogs for profit. More creativity comes with the cake designs so it helps ease potential boredom. :0) Good luck. You probably could do both. I mean, the recipes I use for dog biscuits are for human consumption, so it's just a really dry cookie for dogs, so you really shouldn't have a problem doing both. :0)





Exactly - that's how I felt! But from the response from others I'm thinking that I'd more-so have to keep the separate, or at least assure people that the products aren't mixed together in the same area (which, obviously, they wouldn't be) so that I wouldn't deflect those people who would feel uncomfortable with knowing that I did both.

nmarie Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 5:11am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomoore

Quote:
Originally Posted by lchristi27

We have a bakery here in Minneapolis that serves both dog treats and people treats. I havent been there yet, but hear it goes over really well. People stop by for a cupcake and get a treat for their dog, so I think you have a great idea. Not sure about how it will go in a home bakery though.

Good luck! If I were closer I'd buy Doggie treat for my baby icon_biggrin.gif



I don't know how this would work for you, but I do manage a bakery that is in a very dog friendly community and is very well known for their dog treats, bread and cupcakes. Many of our guests will add 6-10 dog treats to their bread or cupcake orders. I'd say we sell at least 650 or so per week.




Good to know! Maybe I'm not the only one who wants to do this icon_smile.gif

Do you have a website? Also, lchristi27, would you feel comfortable giving me the name of that bakery in Minneapolis so that I could check them out? You could pm me if you'd be willing to icon_smile.gif

Thanks for your input!

nmarie Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 5:12am
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmandaLP

I am not sure how popular they are, but a local cupcake truck sells "pup cakes" for dogs. They are parked outside of a park that has a dog run, so I could see that appeal.




A local cupcake truck is a very venture... "pup cakes" - adorable!

That's another aspect I didn't think of - a van, like on the idea of a lunch truck!

Thank you!

nmarie Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 5:14am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth0209

Quote:
Originally Posted by nmarie

Hello all!

I am looking to start a bakery that specializes in two quite different areas:
* Custom cakes and cupcakes, and other "people" desserts.
* Organic and vegetarian dog treats and other retail like collars, clothes, and stuff for dog owners like dog-loving plaques for the home, etc.

I plan to run the whole show from my home kitchen. icon_biggrin.gif

Im trying to come up with two good names something like Divine Delights (which would be the main name) and Doggie Delights or something to that affect. Then I can have two websites - DivineDelights.com, where Id have the customer choose between going forward for people desserts, or go to the DoggieDelights.com site for dog stuff. Obviously both domain names would need to be available (the ones in this example aren't icon_cry.gif), and the main name would need to be non-restrictive, so it could apply to a dog-centered company and a people-centered company.

Oh, I live in Massachusetts if that helps.

Oh - and I'm not necessarily against having one name for both, I just couldn't think of any name that would sufficiently encompass both aspects of a business like that.

Id really appreciate any input Thanks in advance icon_smile.gif


How about People Sweets and Doggie Treats.




People Sweets and Doggie Treats! Why didn't I think of that?!?!?! What a good one! Thank you very much! It could be like "People Sweets and Doggie Treats... for dogs and their peeps!" Haha!

Now to decide if I should do them both together or separately... Errr! icon_biggrin.gif

nmarie Posted 4 Dec 2010 , 5:17am

I just want to say before I hit the hay... Thank you to everyone who has contributed their ideas today. I appreciate it very, very much... and just so you all know, your time is going to a good cause, as I plan donating at least 25% of the proceeds of each sale to an organization of the customer's choice. icon_biggrin.gif

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