CuteCakes1234 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:10am

A.Please inform me if I am over reacting.. I met with a bride today, she wants a three tier wedding cake 10" 8" 6" and 100 cupcakes I am charging her 150.00 for all... I know this is a low price, but no one around here wants to buy anything expensive or from me at least. She also is getting a 2 tier bad man cake for 55.00 for December 23rd.

I scheduled a consultation for her wedding today with six different flavors to try. Everything's going fine I step out so her and her fiance can chat about the flavors, I come back she says they all taste amazing, but.... can you make the cake more moist?? She said she wants it light and fluffy, I then said yes of course but a wedding cake has to be dense to hold its structure.. she said okay but it needs to be moist and light/fluffy... I then agreed ( I use WASC) to make it more moist... we go on everything's great, she then says WOW your so young ( I'm 23 same age as her) we have a conversation for a few minutes.. she then says how much is the deposit for the batman cake ? I then said the deposit for both cakes will be 95.oo , her and her fiance look at each other and she says no I'm not booking my wedding cake I want to make sure your good at what you do first so ill just be paying for the bat man cake.. note i made all samples fresh and expected the bride to pay the deposit for her wedding so I did not charge for the sample platter, note I did tell her prior that if she did not want to book I will need 25.00 for platter.. well that was not paid :/.. I know not all brides book there wedding... she then starts asking me personal questions, she asked where do I get money from to make the cakes, I told her I was not comfortable with telling her that, she then says she wants to know if I have income and how do I afford everything.. I then said yes i have a stable income and changed the conversation.. I find that none of her business.. she then ask what race I am.. I then said we need to talk about your order and not personal things, she got upset.. ( I am black,white) not that it even matters... well I'm done venting lol!!!! Please some advice because at this point I do not even want to make this my business even though it is my passion! I get sooo many comments on my age and tons of dirty looks like people are uncomfortable with me.. I dress to par, and talk very professional with them, well I try lol I have no business bone in my body haha! If it helps I've been told I look like raven simon my whole life... I hate to even explain how I look but I'm getting very insecure in my business!! Note she also asked questions as if I don't really bake the items Ibake and decorate it was pretty awful!!! To be judged so much...

49 replies
Dayti Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:19am

Seriously, you would just be better off not taking this order and cutting her loose. You will hardly cover your costs for those prices. If you continue to offer cakes so cheaply, you will burn yourself out really fast. Not to mention that you do not need to explain yourself to anyone, and such personal questions are not necessary, welcome, or at all professional in a business meeting.
 

CuteCakes1234 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:23am

A.

jgifford Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:26am

First of all, you should have told her since she wasn't booking her wedding with you, the tasting would be $25.  And you would NOT be doing her batman cake.  As far as any personal questions, "This isn't the time or the place for those type of questions."  Your age and your race are not even up for discussion.  With any customer. Just say you're older than you look (dealing with this type of people will cause that).  Or simply ignore the questions that have no place in the discussion.

 

You're obviously very nice and you need to get over some of that.  Not saying you have to get snotty, but you need to give the impression that this is business and personal matters don't get discussed.  You also might consider dressing more as the professional baker - a nice apron or chef's coat.

 

This is your business, you're a professional and YOU direct the conversation. And don't let anyone get away with this type of nonsense again.  Good luck.

CuteCakes1234 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:32am

AThis is why I LOVE cake central!! I just went from seriously thinking of giving up, to realizing I need to be a tid bit more firm with some of my customers that treat me this way.. thank you! As for pricing I seriously am known as the "cheap cake lady" and nothing I do is cheap, I spend hours like we all do and TLC into all of my work, plus the BEST ingredients. I feel over whelmed when I see that I made no profit at all and half the time feel taken advantage of, but I'm learning I am the one letting others take advantage of my kindness.

Spuddysmom Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:33am

What would make you create a cake for such a person?

1. Take a breath, get yourself together and tell her that you are booked. She and her fiance have already scammed you out of $25 worth of product, consider that a cheap price to pay in learning how to run a business. There is a lot of excellent advice on CC when it comes to running a business, learning to create a plan, write a contract, price a cake, etc. Take some time to do more research - consider it an investment in yourself. 

2. Next time someone asks you what race you are, tell them, "Human. what are you?" Don't let anyone take advantage of your youth by answering their weirdly personal questions. You do not owe them anything but a cake which they have paid for.

Dayti Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:40am

ADear X, After meeting with you and X on (insert day/date), I am afraid that I feel obliged to cancel your order. I don't think that I am the right baker for you, but wish you luck in finding someone who meets your needs. Please send me your bank details or mailing address so I can return your deposit.

Best regards, Happy baker who just saved my sanity by avoiding any further caking relationship with you since you would probably say you hated the Batman cake and weren't going to order the wedding cake and cupcakes as a result.

Or something along those lines.

jgifford Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:46am

"I am returning your deposit LESS the $25 for the tasting."

AZCouture Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:52am
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgifford 

"I am returning your deposit LESS the $25 for the tasting."

Yes, don't you dare NOT get that $25!

CuteCakes1234 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:53am

AI.will most definitely do a tun more re search I have been making cakes for 4 years and am now trying to start a business. As for telling her I cannot make her cake do I really put in there that she mite not have liked the bat man cake and won't order the wedding cake as well?? Lol I found that post hilarious!!!

Here is my facebook page, any advice on what to and not to post would be great! Please message me on facebook thanks!!

Desirays Unique Delights ( face book) this is how I do most of my advertising ...

CuteCakes1234 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:55am

AHer deposit for the 55.00 deposit for the batman cake was only 20.00 so how would that work?

kazita Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 12:58am

AIf you told her prior to the appointment that she needed to pay for the tasting platter I would tell her the money she gave you was for that and that you had informed her of this before the tasting than I would cut her loose. Before you agree to another tasting I would tell them you want the $25 up front or at least have them sign something saying it will cost them $25 for the tasting platter

Dayti Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 1:00am

ANo, don't send that to her, that's just between us! I would just return the $20 then, and chalk up the $25 hit to experience and to avoid having any more contact or discussions with her.

kazita Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 1:06am

ADear such and such there will be no refund being that I informed you that the tasting platter is $25 so I'm out $5 sorry but it seems that I am now booked on that day thank you blah blah blah

kazita Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 1:09am

AOh and you better make sure that she realizes that you won't be doing the batman cake

costumeczar Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 1:22am

Okay, I'm going to give you a lecture now...First of all, send the money back other than the $25 with a note explaining that after reflecting on your meeting, you aren't comfortable working with her, so you're returning the deposit minus the charge for the tasting and cancelling the order. Then do NOT respond to any more of her emails or calls. She'll call and try to push you into doing the cake because...YOU ARE CHARGING WAY TOO LITTLE AND BEING A SUCKER.

 

When you don't charge appropriately, you will get treated like this. There is NO SITUATION that makes it appropriate for someone to ask about your race (I'm just appalled at that one) but when you're charging what you're charging people ARE going to wonder how the heck you're making any money, which you aren't! If you charge less than Walmart you're not a business, you're a charity. Don't try to sell any more cakes until you figure out what an approprite salary for yourself is and what your real costs are. Then get a contract and present yourself like a professional with appropriate pricing and procedures and you won't get treated that way anymore.

 

If you're really at a total loss on where to start, look to see if there's a SCORE group anywhere near you. They're retired businesspeople who give advice to businesses that are starting. It sounds like you need some help, so get some before you get confronted by another jerk like that customer!

CuteCakes1234 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 1:34am

AI know I know I under price BIG TIME . I just feel like I will get zero business if I try to charge 120 for a birthday cake.. I guess me not having a store front, my age, possibly race really makes people not trust me and it hurts I am the most trust worthy person i know... I do have a contract from cake boss, order forms, getting a web site, renting a churches kitchen licenses ect.. trust me I have tried charging 2.75 per serving.. I got cussed out and all types of horrible remarks on how my prices are wayyyy to high and they will go to Walmart... I have my first vendor event coming up.. any tips on how to trigger more people who can afford these prices no problem? I mean seriously my cakes taste amazing!! I've been told by many many people... ill order a chef coat to wear to my meetings any other ideas on how to look or act the par? I am confident that. "Sound " professional... but then again I've had bad remarks on the way I type ect ect.. MN is so harsh I swear!!!!

BakingIrene Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 1:53am

Please--your race has nothing to do with it--not even in MN.  Toba Garrett would never take a second's treatment of this kind.  I would also bet that 80% of us did some self-learning on cakes before we got a chance to take classes or a course.  You do not need a storefront, that is so much more $$$.  

 

Make sure you have a good online presence (I bought a used digital camera on ebay for that). Set your prices according to your minimum wage and real cost of ingredients and rent etc.

 

You are probably hearing from people who do not pay more than Wal-mart for the simple reason that they cannot afford anything better.  Please start looking at the suburbs of Minneapolis instead of the city centre for those people who know that they should pay $120 for a birthday cake.  Go to your public library and ask to see census data for income.  That will show you where to promote your products.

 

This couple--send them a letter telling them "I regret that I cannot meet your requirements".  NO further details.  Send back the deposit less the tasting fee. Make sure you keep a photocopy for yourself.

 

At events, a chefs coat is a good start.  Make sure your hair is neat because that is the place that a lot of people look.  Stand straight and don't let anybody tell you that you are out of line.  Make sure you know your local health rules and that you can explain to anybody who asks, how you meet them.

 

NEVER NEVER NEVER consider to do work for anybody who asks you your race. That is ILLEGAL.

No you don't have to say a word, merely send a one-line email "I am unavailable for your event". Always cc yourself.

costumeczar Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 2:00am
Quote:
Originally Posted by CuteCakes1234 

II got cussed out and all types of horrible remarks on how my prices are wayyyy to high and they will go to Walmart...

Then LET THEM GO! If someone is going to cuss you out what the $*%*& would you want to make them a cake anyway?

 

If you want people to treat you like a professional then you need to start believing that you're worth being treated like one.

rosech Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 4:46am

AI think if u decide not to do batman then give back deposit BECAUSE u took the money for batman deposit, nothing else. U were supposed to iron that out on the sampling day but now that u did not, take it as a learning process and move on.

crucible151 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 1:56pm

I don't really see how it's her business how you make money. Other than maybe she thought if you "weren't a professional" (ie. you had another job) that she could low ball you or get you to do it for free! She seemed very rude and I wouldn't have even wanted to deal with her. If people tell you they're going to Wal-mart ask them if they've tasted a Wal-Mart cake. They're not great. Make sure they know that you know how much you're worth.

CuteCakes1234 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 5:53pm

AI do have another job, that's seriously none of her business to ask so I agree maybe she thought she could get a cheaper cake or free! That was a topic she kept pushing and pushing, where do I work, how do I pay for everything ect ect.. lots of good advice thanks lady's/gents..

I was going to post a new thread about another topic, maybe some advice on how to do this as well? How do I go about telling people on my Facebook page that my prices are changing from 55.00 for a two tier to 2.75 per serving, I have a handful of awesome clients who get there cakes from me for every occasion.. However I did charge 100 for a three tier cake with tons and tons of details, I know my fault.. how do I go about telling those who come to me for every occasion that they are going to have to pay 2.75 or 2.50 per serving? Thanks in advance!!

BakingIrene Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 6:06pm

You change your page with prices.  End of story.  

 

Edited to say: if anybody has got a price quote but has not yet paid a deposit, email them now to tell them that the deposit has to be paid by a certain date to guarantee the price. Give them 5 days at most.  At this point, your new price list could say "effective January 1, 2013" or something like that.

 

You need to say "price can only be guaranteed with a signed contract and paid deposit" in your list of terms and conditions.  You put that right before you state which forms of payment you accept.  And made sure you use the term cleared payment because a cheque is only a piece of paper until the $$$ is in your account.

 

No reason to offer anybody any explanation foi your change in price structure.  Everybody who goes to the grocery store understands that prices do go up.

Anybody who asks for "old" prices? tell them that they should go to the grocery store and see how far they get when they ask for "old" cake prices.

Or you could tell the smarter people that you are required to meet minimum wage laws as well as health regulations.

 

If you want to give your best clients a discount, go ahead, but DO NOT advertise that fact. Do it order by order.  Tell them it is for more than 6 (or whatever) cakes in each year. That way they shouldn't go telling anybody else to ask for a discount.

robin3845 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 6:21pm

Wow! All this sounds so familiar!! I used to charge very little for my cakes as well and realized that its JUST not worth it!! I've finally learned to put my foot down and just say no if the client thinks its too much money. I DO NOT haggle with my cake prices anymore. And yes I think you were TOTALLY right to cut this client lose! So not worth the aggrivation especially when you're giving them SUCH a good deal. It seems they want it all but don't want to pay for it!!

DeniseNH Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 8:26pm

I'm wondering if a.) she's a cake decorator wanna-be or b.) a total jerk,  In either case you need to run away from her pronto.  No excuses.  I had to fire a bride because of her rude groom and found out that he walked away from her and the wedding one week before.  I simply wrote her an email and said that I didn't feel that we were right for each other and that I wished her all the best.  She wrote back "I hope it wasn't anything we said or did", at this point I chose not to respond and just left it at that.  In these cases the less you say the better.  She's jerking your chain and will cause you nothing but pain.  You know how they say you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince.  Well when you're just starting out you need to go through a lot of tire kickers and bargain basement customers before you're known as a higher priced baker.  Hang in there, as you progress they'll be fewer and fewer tire kickers.  Putting your foot down now, eliminates inquiries from her bargain basement friends.

CuteCakes1234 Posted 16 Dec 2012 , 8:39pm

A

Original message sent by DeniseNH

I'm wondering if a.) she's a cake decorator wanna-be or b.) a total jerk,  In either case you need to run away from her pronto.  No excuses.  I had to fire a bride because of her rude groom and found out that he walked away from her and the wedding one week before.  I simply wrote her an email and said that I didn't feel that we were right for each other and that I wished her all the best.  She wrote back "I hope it wasn't anything we said or did", at this point I chose not to respond and just left it at that.  In these cases the less you say the better.  She's jerking your chain and will cause you nothing but pain.  You know how they say you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince.  Well when you're just starting out you need to go through a lot of tire kickers and bargain basement customers before you're known as a higher priced baker.  Hang in there, as you progress they'll be fewer and fewer tire kickers.  Putting your foot down now, eliminates inquiries from her bargain basement friends.

Yes I'm sure she's just being a jerk, she just emailed me and wanted to change the batman theme cake into a joker theme cake.. I have yet to email her I've been super busy but will do so this evening. As for pricing thanks for the advice, I changed it to 2.00 for butter cream per serving and2.50fondant,is that still low?

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