Brides flaking on my tastings.

Business By jenmat Updated 28 Jan 2014 , 11:55pm by costumeczar

-K8memphis Posted 17 Jan 2014 , 7:49pm
post #31 of 68

in lieu of the tasting thing--i like to do the 'free' honeymoon & anniversary cake boxed & delivered to reception --


truth to tell offering tastings is an awkward way to do business--although it does work for some personality types--mine is not one of them--like you gotta be good in business, accounting, marketing, computer skills, photography, baking, decorating, packaging, engineering, sales, and a perpetual tea party hostess--phffft too much--


i think peeps could have the option to have either a tasting they have to pay for or two free cakes for honeymoon & anniversary--that way the bride can serve all her expensive servings to her guests--it's a budget stretcher for the bride too--i think it could be a perfectly viable and attractive alternative--if it was marketed--or just offer the two free cakes--done

AZCouture Posted 17 Jan 2014 , 7:50pm
post #32 of 68

AI am so glad I am in a small town and get away with not having to do too much. I feel for you guys having to hustle and put up with flaky people.

What I do is meet with them first after a basic budget has already been determined, show them some custom sketches based on the input I already got from them via email, and they pay their retainer to hold the date. Then, at a later date, I either have a big group of clients come over staggered thru out the day on a Sunday, and they pick and choose flavors from about 20 options. I do that maybe 3 times a year. Or, I bake little tiny 3" cakes from extra batter and freeze them for the client to pick up in a to go box after the weekend's projects are all done.

AZCouture Posted 17 Jan 2014 , 7:51pm
post #33 of 68

AAnd I don't charge, most if not all, have already booked with me by the time a tasting comes around. If some "free cake" seekers happen to attend, oh well, it's not like 5 bites of cake is going to break me.

AZCouture Posted 17 Jan 2014 , 8:20pm
post #36 of 68

AWhat would they think was wrong Kara?

AZCouture Posted 17 Jan 2014 , 8:29pm
post #37 of 68


Original message sent by costumeczar

I wish I could do it that way but there's no way anyone around here would book before tasting the cake.

I'm really lucky for that, and trust me, it's not something I would have ever suggested, but a couple years ago a bride came in and wanted to book before her spot would be gone and said she'd just rather wait for that part. I mentioned to the next client that called that my previous bride opted for that, and theysaid yes, and so on and so on. So I started offering that solution, and I can't think of any time that someone didn't agree to it, or at least didn't outright say "I want to taste it first." Plus, I know what other cake is floating around out here, and I tell them straight up with confidence, that my cake is the best in town and they'll love it, the only hard decision will be which flavors to choose. And if decorators aren't confident in their products enough to talk about theirown cakes like that, well....sorry.

AZCouture Posted 17 Jan 2014 , 8:34pm
post #38 of 68


Original message sent by -K8memphis

yeah it's the time more than the money to me--when you're doing a cake you got everything all right there no problem to make extra or harvest scraps to get the little cakes going--but just having to bake a bunch of stuff just to try & gin up business--so amateurs can compare your work can decide if/what they like--knees are weak cahn't breathe...not for me

Exactly. I am really conservative with my time. I spend enough time with the baking and decorating, I don't want long consults on top of that. I get as much info as possible from a customer before they come in, and they know approximately how much it will be too. So when they sit down with me, I've got sketches or ideas to present them, and soon after that we're writing up the contract and collecting a retainer. Bing bang done. Streamlined baby, streamlined.

AZCouture Posted 17 Jan 2014 , 11:49pm
post #42 of 68

AOk you two, can you break that down into lay people descriptions?

costumeczar Posted 18 Jan 2014 , 1:23am
post #44 of 68


Original message sent by AZCouture

Ok you two, can you break that down into lay people descriptions?

Heh heh...I love cognitive dissonance. I used to make my roommates be subjects in all of my experiments and they finally refused to do any more. They said that psychology experiments were designed to make you feel stupid.

Cognitive dissonance just means that feeling of mental tension you get when you see two competing arguments and it makes you mentally uncomfortable. You want to maintain a feeling of "calm" so you choose a side. That's the simple basically can't hold two competing views as both being correct.

Then a bunch of other theories come from that, like the post-purchase rationalization i mentioned. They've shown that if you buy something expensive you come up with all kinds of reasons why that was a good decision to avoid thinking that you made the wrong decision ( which is mental tension/ cognitive dissonance). They've shown that people who buy a car will notice that make of car more than others, probably as a way to validate buying that model. If i buy a mercedes I'll notice more mercedes on the road, and that makes me feel better about buying one myself.

The basic idea is that people don't like feeling wrong, so cognitive dissonance drives a lot of behavior. You want to believe that you're right, so you look for evidence of what you believe to reinforce the feeling of mental comfort. You hang out with people who believe what you do, you choose a church that tells you what you believe is right, and the news that you watch is slanted toward what you think is right. All to make yourself avoid cognitive dissonance.

And that's your lecture for the day. The quiz will follow.

AZCouture Posted 18 Jan 2014 , 1:45am
post #45 of 68


costumeczar Posted 18 Jan 2014 , 2:17am
post #47 of 68


Original message sent by MBalaska

So if you don't always make the Right Decision, You make sure the Decision is now Right.

That about sums it up. :smile:

costumeczar Posted 18 Jan 2014 , 2:19am
post #48 of 68


costumeczar Posted 18 Jan 2014 , 9:35pm
post #51 of 68


Original message sent by liz at sugar

My husband was the psych major, so I understand your roommates pain. :)

I was a marketing major, so I was always interested in what triggered people to buy.  It is all inter-related, and pretty fascinating.


Marketing and psychology in one marriage is a dangerous combination!

costumeczar Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 8:05pm
post #52 of 68

ASo I did the open house today for the first time, and out of 8 people signed up to come 6 showed up and three handed me deposits before leaving. The others left with contracts and I'll see if they send them back. So I guess the format didn't put people off. I think they kind of felt like they wanted to book because they saw other people here, too, it made them feel competitive!

-K8memphis Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 8:38pm
post #53 of 68

  wow--way cool, kara--congrats 

costumeczar Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 8:57pm
post #54 of 68

I think pitting brides against each other works, a couple of them said they didn't want to worry about their dates being taken. Heh heh. But the truth is I'm doing fewer cakes this year, so those dates are now booked and done. And the people who didn't show up and who had the same dates as one of the girls who booked are now out of luck.

-K8memphis Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 9:47pm
post #55 of 68

even better  *:-)/\:-) high five

jenmat Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 9:52pm
post #56 of 68

Awesome, Kara~

And conversely I had 4 appts back-to-back yesterday and I'm 4 for 4! Even the bride who didn't get her flavors to me in time signed her name and gave me the cash! 


When I did the events I did have some times where the competition was plain and I was taking in more contracts (I usually had 10-15 couples booked for a 2 hour open house). And then I had some nights where everyone came and ate and left before I could even talk to them. Maybe having events in booking season is the real key- when it's the middle of July no one is ready to commit, but when it's time to decide, no one wants their decision to be made for them. 

DeliciousDesserts Posted 20 Jan 2014 , 12:51pm
post #60 of 68

AThat would be a correlation not causation.

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