At Home Bakers- Do You Do Cake Testing?

Business By ericaaiden Updated 18 Dec 2014 , 5:28pm by zirarzirar

Godot Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 11:48am
post #31 of 84

ANo, they don't want an individual appointment - they think they're ENTITLED to one.

DeliciousDesserts Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 11:53am
post #32 of 84

APerhaps I look at this incorrectly. Go me, it's not a tasting! Yes, they get samples but that's icing on my cake. For me, it's a consultation!

This is my opportunity to introduce myself, get to know the clients a bit, & design a cake. It's a time to sell myself.

Very rarely do I make to go sample boxes. These ate reserved for clients using trusted planners or those who have already chosen me. No time for me? No time for my cake!

There are several restaurants in town I would like to try. I'd be dropping at least $100 to eat there. Still, they don't offer samples.

Bottom line, samples cost. They can be an investment. My preference is an intimate consultation lasting about an hour to an hour and a half & includes about 8 flavors.

costumeczar Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 2:09pm
post #33 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by Godot 

No, they don't want an individual appointment - they think they're ENTITLED to one.

exactly...Because it's their special day, and they want attention.

DeliciousDesserts Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 2:26pm
post #34 of 84

A

Original message sent by Godot

No, they don't want an individual appointment - they think they're ENTITLED to one.

So true...along with the cake of their dreams even if it doesn't fit the budget.

Elcee Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 11:07pm
post #35 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeliciousDesserts 

Perhaps I look at this incorrectly. Go me, it's not a tasting! Yes, they get samples but that's icing on my cake. For me, it's a consultation! Agreed, I never call these meetings "tastings", they are "consultations" icon_smile.gif


Very rarely do I make to go sample boxes. These ate reserved for clients using trusted planners or those who have already chosen me. No time for me? No time for my cake!I make them because I usually hold my consults in a public place. The reason is two-fold--hesitant to bring strangers into my home & my HOA doesn't allow "traffic" due to a home-based business (whole other topic, there).


There are several restaurants in town I would like to try. I'd be dropping at least $100 to eat there. Still, they don't offer samples. Excellent point. I never thought of that.

 

Edited to add that most caterers and venues here will do tastings for weddings, even the restaurants.

FullHouse Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 11:29pm
post #36 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeliciousDesserts 

Perhaps I look at this incorrectly. Go me, it's not a tasting! Yes, they get samples but that's icing on my cake. For me, it's a consultation!

This is my opportunity to introduce myself, get to know the clients a bit, & design a cake. It's a time to sell myself.

Very rarely do I make to go sample boxes. These ate reserved for clients using trusted planners or those who have already chosen me. No time for me? No time for my cake!

There are several restaurants in town I would like to try. I'd be dropping at least $100 to eat there. Still, they don't offer samples.

Bottom line, samples cost. They can be an investment. My preference is an intimate consultation lasting about an hour to an hour and a half & includes about 8 flavors.

Same here, I refer to them as a consult with a tasting.  Generally it will take anywhere from 45 min. - 1.5hrs.  It is the chance for us to get to know each other and see that we are a good fit and to sell my services to them.  I meet the client at a local Starbucks (have 4 boys and also don't feel comfortable bringing complete strangers into my home).  I have only done 1 to-go tasting, and that was for a bride who had already booked and paid her deposit.  

Elcee Posted 8 Jul 2013 , 11:40pm
post #37 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by FullHouse 

 I meet the client at a local Starbucks (have 4 boys and also don't feel comfortable bringing complete strangers into my home).  I have only done 1 to-go tasting, and that was for a bride who had already booked and paid her deposit.  

FullHouse, do your clients taste AT Starbucks? I just assumed that was a no-no which is why I have the consult and then send them on their way with their box.

DeliciousDesserts Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 12:24am
post #38 of 84

Elcee,

 

I heart you.  I really do.

 

I'm with you.  I think it's rude to have clients taste my Delicious Desserts in a place that sells....dessert.

 

And, you are correct.  Most of the caterers in town offer a sample of their menu.  They have a minimum guest count or charge for those tastings.  Also, you get what they feel like making.  They don't take special requests!

FullHouse Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 12:28am
post #39 of 84

I purchase beverages during the meeting and I bring the cake samples in a box, generally the clients do take the box home.  If they do choose to open it and eat the samples there, I don't stop them and I don't think that Starbucks cares, it is for a business meeting, not because I am bringing cake to avoid purchasing from them.  Though 99% of the time the client takes the box home. 

 

When I refer to a "to-go" tasting, I mean that they would just stop by to pick up the box and skip the meeting/consult.

costumeczar Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 1:19am
post #40 of 84

If I didn't do samples I wouldn't book one cake, because people in this area expect that.  I'd love to not have to do it, but then again I'd love to not have to do any appointments at all!

Elcee Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 1:35am
post #41 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by FullHouse 

I purchase beverages during the meeting and I bring the cake samples in a box, generally the clients do take the box home.  If they do choose to open it and eat the samples there, I don't stop them and I don't think that Starbucks cares, it is for a business meeting, not because I am bringing cake to avoid purchasing from them.  Though 99% of the time the client takes the box home. 

 

When I refer to a "to-go" tasting, I mean that they would just stop by to pick up the box and skip the meeting/consult.

Oh, so we're really talking about the same thing...I just call mine a to go box from the get-go.

Elcee Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 1:38am
post #42 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeliciousDesserts 

Elcee,

 

I heart you.  I really do.

 

I'm with you.  I think it's rude to have clients taste my Delicious Desserts in a place that sells....dessert.

 

And, you are correct.  Most of the caterers in town offer a sample of their menu.  They have a minimum guest count or charge for those tastings.  Also, you get what they feel like making.  They don't take special requests!

icon_wink.gif Especially since our desserts are SO much better than anything available at Starbucks!

DeliciousDesserts Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 1:40am
post #43 of 84

AExactly!

Carrie789 Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 2:06am
post #44 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elcee 

OK, I just found this on my Facebook page. I've been focusing on networking with other wedding professionals in my area. As part of that, whenever I do a tasting I put together an extra box to give to a planner, photographer, etc. Well, the photographer I hit up yesterday wrote the nicest blog post about (and took amazing pictures of) one of my tasting-to-go boxes!

 

You can easily see how I package the boxes. The cake samples are 3" rounds. I can cut 4 of them from an 8". The buttercreams are in 1.5 ounce jello shot cups. I make it into a sweetheart box by adding 2 napkins and 2 little plastic forks.

 

http://meganhardrephotography.com/cake/


Elcee, your sample box looks beautiful. Question: How tall are your 3" rounds. It's hard to tell from the photo.

Elcee Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 2:17am
post #45 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrie789 


Elcee, your sample box looks beautiful. Question: How tall are your 3" rounds. It's hard to tell from the photo.

Thanks! They're just under 2" high; cut from a single layer, not torted.

Annabakescakes Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 6:41am
post #46 of 84

I bake square cakes from left over batter, then wrap then in freezer paper and put them in a freezer bag. I also save any tiny bits of fillings I have left-over as well. When I have a "Consultation WITH a tasting" I get about 6 -8 flavors of cakes out of my freezer, and cut up some squares, and get my fillings out and put them in soufflé cups, and put it all on a platter. I have them mix and match cake and filling, and they love it. Most people book, and I am at the end of my cake I baked IN JANUARY! Last week I had a tasting and the mother and daughter LOVED my 7 month old cakes and 3 month old fillings, lol!

Annabakescakes Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 6:42am
post #47 of 84

Ooops, I should mention they booked, and want a high end design, as well.

BomCakes Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 7:17am
post #48 of 84

I've been doing a kit for wedding consultations. 5-6 cake flavors and about a dozen frostings, fillings in lil cups in a pretty gift bag. It works out because it takes about a half hour off of the consult and the couple enjoys the "gift". I always have extra batter so I just fill the little 4" square pans I have and make kits from them.

Elcee Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 3:09pm
post #49 of 84

Anna, do you do your consultations in your home?

Annabakescakes Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 4:06pm
post #50 of 84

A

Original message sent by Elcee

Anna, do you do your consultations in your home?

It isn't really correct to say "in the home" but sort of. We had an attached garage, that is now a bakery, and I have them in there. I will switch phones and take some pictures in a bit, to show what I mean.

Elcee Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 5:54pm
post #51 of 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by Annabakescakes 


It isn't really correct to say "in the home" but sort of. We had an attached garage, that is now a bakery, and I have them in there. I will switch phones and take some pictures in a bit, to show what I mean.

LOL! At first I misread your first sentence and couldn't figure out if you were trying to correct some obscure grammatical error on my part. I usually do pretty well on that aside from some typos icon_smile.gif...I looked at it at least 3 times before I read it correctly. I'm working on cake show administrative stuff and I must be getting brain blur.

 

So, on your property, but not really in your home. Got it thumbs_up.gif. I'd love to see pictures.

DeliciousDesserts Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 11:39am
post #52 of 84

AAnna's set up is awesome!

I know you didn't ask, probably because you already know. I do mine in my home.

The whole front room is a consult room. I have a table all set with cake dummies. Those make my life so much easier on those "visual" brides.

Annabakescakes Posted 16 Jul 2013 , 5:57am
post #53 of 84

AI forgot to post the picture of my consultation area. The large double doors are where the garage door used to be, and there are sidelights, as well. One is hidden by the large cabinet, where I keep my plateaus. I have 17, so I need to keep them in something, lol. [IMG]http://cakecentral.com/content/type/61/id/3056232/width/200/height/400[/IMG]

Annabakescakes Posted 16 Jul 2013 , 6:01am
post #54 of 84

A[IMG]http://cakecentral.com/content/type/61/id/3056235/width/200/height/400[/IMG][IMG]http://cakecentral.com/content/type/61/id/3056236/width/200/height/400[/IMG]

Annabakescakes Posted 16 Jul 2013 , 6:08am
post #55 of 84

AThe place is a disaster, but at best, I am totally disorganized, at worst, I am a slob. I am learning to accept it. It is easier than running around stuffing the mess places and I just don't have it in me to devise places for everything. [IMG]http://cakecentral.com/content/type/61/id/3056239/width/200/height/400[/IMG][IMG]http://cakecentral.com/content/type/61/id/3056241/width/200/height/400[/IMG]

Annabakescakes Posted 16 Jul 2013 , 6:15am
post #56 of 84

ASome of the photos are taken at different times and strategically to hide the mess, so I know it doesn't really show how things are truly set up. One of these days, when I have a couple thousand to invest, I'll fly Laney up to help me drag it all out and find a place for it... I even have 2 really nice label makers and we'll make a trip to the Container Store in Cincinnati ;-) and we'll take some great pictures then!!!

Relznik Posted 16 Jul 2013 , 6:26am
post #57 of 84

I have cake-room envy! icon_biggrin.gif
 

MimiFix Posted 16 Jul 2013 , 10:45am
post #58 of 84

We bought a moveable screen (room divider) and I placed it wherever I had the biggest mess. They're available for less than $100. The one I bought had slots for large photos so it doubled as a portfolio.  

as you wish Posted 16 Jul 2013 , 12:16pm
post #59 of 84

A

Original message sent by Annabakescakes

I bake square cakes from left over batter, then wrap then in freezer paper and put them in a freezer bag. I also save any tiny bits of fillings I have left-over as well. When I have a "Consultation [I]WITH[/I] a tasting" I get about 6 -8 flavors of cakes out of my freezer, and cut up some squares, and get my fillings out and put them in soufflé cups, and put it all on a platter. I have them mix and match cake and filling, and they love it. Most people book, and I am at the end of my cake I baked IN JANUARY! Last week I had a tasting and the mother and daughter LOVED my 7 month old cakes and 3 month old fillings, lol!

I do the same thing, saving all leftover stuff, and then I piggyback on friends' Tupperware, Pampered Chef, Epicure Selections, etc. parties. It is win-win because they get more people coming to their party (whatever they are showing/selling) when folks know they will get cake, and I get to do a tasting for a whole group of people without even having to tidy my house! If someone contacts me wanting a tasting they will be told when the next event is and invited to attend.

kikiandkyle Posted 16 Jul 2013 , 12:51pm
post #60 of 84

AAnna I'm obsessed with your cake garage, it's amazing!

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