Interesting real experience. (Not mine.)
Interesting! It would certainly deter the folks looking for the freebie and not the booking. And If someone does not book, then your time and materials are covered. My last three bookings were from local brides who had never had my products and ordered sight and taste unseen. My current tastings are $5 and usually involve my three most popular flavors with matching icing, usually a single cupcake of each flavor. (I usually bake extra and have them on hand for tastings). I provide tastings to go with my wedding packet of information about ordering, basic pricing, etc. I tend to discuss via phone or email for cake design/flavor/options. I do not do anything but buttercream and mostly simplistic designs (Rustic frosting is so popular). The draw of my bakery is my baked goods are no preservative or artificial anything.
If someone wishes to try something different, I suggest they order a dozen cupcakes with their requested flavor combination. Most people are happy to have the standard tasting and I have about an 75% booking rate from them. Interestingly enough, of the inquiries when I do not have a tasting request, I book about 95%. Most often these are brides who are coming into the area to get married at our local wineries and a tasting is not in the cards.
brilliant move on the part of that bakery in the video. Talk about success!
Now THIS stuff is fascinating! Waaaaay better than those never ending pricing questions.
The marketing/profit side of baking is very, very intriguing. It's also super tough which is why I happily hobby bake.
I bow deeply to all who make a living with baked goods.
That is a great video! Here in Canada it's standard to charge for a tasting; so it's interesting to hear from someone who's business has been on both sides of charging and not charging for tastings..I think the biggest thing they are seeing is that people who are just shopping around for free cake (and I'm pretty sure that happens a lot!) just are not making that booking; they hear there is a fee and don't bother. I myself am getting married in a few months and subsequently have been reading a lot of American Wedding blogs and wedding magazines and it's shocking the number of them that actually recommend going around to a bunch of different cakeries for free cake..apparently it's a way to take time out from the stress of wedding planning and enjoy some free cake!
We charge a tasting fee of $25 for three choices, and increase if they want more, or if it's for more than two people. Sometimes there is a consultation during that time. The wedding coordinator generally handles them and I'm only involved if the cake is something that I should discuss with them. When I started working at this restaurant, they didn't offer tastings. Mainly because the person before me didn't like doing cakes, and used really bad commercial mixes for the ones she did.
Since I wrote a cake menu, and they started the tastings, I end up doing a cake for 95% of the weddings we book. No one has ever had a problem with the fee, and you know they are serious about the whole thing.
Outside of my job, I charge the same price for tastings.
I found it interesting when she addressed the age old argument of "people in this area just won't pay it". They initially thought the same thing .... that people in So. CHicago wouldn't pay. But wow, look how it turned out. :-)
One of the best decisions we ever made early on in our business was to charge for wedding cake tastings. It filtered out a lot of people just wanting to waste our time, and eat free cake( I kid you not) Also, it helped us manage our time better since we knew that couple was serious if they would pay a $25 fee just to sit down and have us help them design a cake.we did far less consults, but 80- 90percent of the people that we did consultations with from that point on booked.