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Cupcake Tasting Party/Promoting New business

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Okay, I have been scouring these forums as well as Googling to no end! I can't find very much info at all!!

I need advice on hosting a Cupcake Tasting Party to promote my new business and potentially gain new customers. My plan is to announce on my Facebook page and encourage friends, family and customers to share. I am sure I will end up with quite a few current customers but this will give them the opportunity to try new flavors. I'm not cupcakes only, actually intended to do cakes mainly but have quickly taken on a cupcake following. Any who off to the questions!

If you have hosted or been to a party....

What did you charge?
How many flavors did you offer?
Mini or regular?
How many cupcakes per flavor per person?
Did you include a to go box?
If to go box included did you pre make a sampler or let them choose from left overs?
If no to go box included did you offer a a discount if they purchased some of the extras?
What kind of beverages did you provide?

Any other advice would be greatly appreciated!!
post #2 of 17
Oh, I'll be interested to hear the answers to this (sorry I'm no help). I want to do something similar once my new website, business cards, etc. are complete. I haven't done much promotion yet but thought this might be a nice way to start once I revamp (ie have someone with design background do it for me) all of my marketing materials.
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
It seems this is a newer idea that I think is really going to take off here soon. I am working on my brand image as well. Still trying to get thing printed but I am looking at hosting my party in May. I really want it to be a well put together event so I need a good bit of planning time! Hope someone else chimes in soon with some advice. Otherwise I will definitely post my experience once it's done!
post #4 of 17
I guess my question is if you are hosting a tasting party, why would you charge? That may be why you haven't had much of a response. When you promote or advertise for yourself in house, it's at your cost. It's kind of like doing a bridal show. You don't sell your samples to promote your business.
post #5 of 17
Agreed. The idea I was thinking about was no cost to attendees.
post #6 of 17
Hi, I just had an open house to launch my cake business. I did "not" charge. I had five different cake flavors and cupcakes as well. But I also invited a friend who does cookies, I had a jewelry rep from Park Lane, I had my hair stylest there with lots of products and a rep from Mary Kay. The basis was to get everyone there, have some wine or coffee, kick back, taste cake and cookies and brouse the different stations. No pressure to buy anything. just have a ladies day out. It went over very well and I got three seperate cake orders from new clients. It was also a chance for repeat customers to try new flavors and to also crique the new flavors, let me know if I should keep them or ditch them. I had a great time and I think everyone did too. Also gave away door prizes from everyone that was there to co-host.
Major life events require sugar.
Major life events require sugar.
post #7 of 17
Now what Enchantedcreations has done, I have heard of. I've know of different vendors getting together and having a "ladies night" or some type of small event like that.
post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by QTCakes1

I guess my question is if you are hosting a tasting party, why would you charge? That may be why you haven't had much of a response. When you promote or advertise for yourself in house, it's at your cost. It's kind of like doing a bridal show. You don't sell your samples to promote your business.

Wow... Not the kind of response I expected, came off a little rude! I simply asked a few questions. From everything I have come across, most are charging a $5 fee. I never said I wasn't having much of a response, when I have mentioned it to friends, family and clients alike, they are all on board. I believe the reason I am not have a big response on here is because not many people have done this type of event. If I decide to go with a fee, it would include not only the samples and beverages during the event but a sampler box to take home.

If anyone has any insight on the specific questions I asked, I would greatly appreciate it!
post #9 of 17
You know what you are rude! So fricken rude, it's unbelievable! I took the time to give you an answer to your question, others even agreed with me. I was just letting you know why you may not have much a response to your question. No, I have NEVER heard of charging for a tasting event, EVER! Selling stuff, yes, but calling it a tasting event, and then charging, NO. Not EVER. Obvious this is new to you, but not all of us, and that is why you are asking. If you all ready know what you are doing and what you are charging, and everyone you are inviting to this tasting event are okay with paying, then why are you asking the question? I assumed it was to get insight on how tasting events are done, but I guess not. I guess it was just to be able to start a thread on CC and be petted up. Have a good day. Hope your business is a succesful inspite of being so delicate and sensitive. People in buiness who are like that tend to FAIL.
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 
That was not my intention at all. I am sorry if I offended you! I read and post on here a lot and see a lot of negativity towards others, that's what I got from your post. Obviously that's not how it was intended. So I apologize for mistaking your words.

It's clear the type of event I am referring to is not what you or the other posters are speaking of or used to. I do have an idea of what I want to do based on information I have found online but was also curious about what other HAVE done.

Once again, I DO NOT want to be one of the people on CC that bickers back and forth completely off topic. Please accept my apology!

I hope that some fellow CCer's who have done this type of party will. Home in with their experience.
post #11 of 17
Okay, I apologize too. I was really trying to help, cause I saw you had no feedback. That's why I was asking you a question, to get better clarification on what you were tryng to do. That way I would be able to answer it better. I was in no way trying to be rude. And like you said CC has a lot of crazy sometimes and I get tired of trying to help and then get shot down, cause I am trying to help, but I am not telling them they want to hear. So, yeah, I was offended and I snapped. I apologize.

Though I have never did a tasting event in the fashion that you have, I have done events getting together with other vendors. I would offer 4 flavors, cause anymore can get pricey. I would have some dummies on display and an album of your work, as well as cards of course. I would also consider contacting other vendors, such as a Mary Kay rep or a caterer that you trust. Networking is ALWAYS the name of the game. Also, encourage those you invite to bring a guest/s who is unfamiliar with your work. The only thing you have to watch is the accuracy of your RSVP's, cause you do not want to end up with a bunch of product left. But that is why I suggest bringing other vendors in, cause who they invite will also effect your count.
post #12 of 17
I agree with the above on not charging guest. The only time I've seen a cake business charge for an event like what your describing is when the money goes to charity. When I sold cosmetics in the past I did prizes etc. but like one person mentioned there was no pressure to buy.
post #13 of 17
Jena - I never, ever, ever take part in the back and forth crap we so often see on here, but I did want to say I've seen a lot of QTCakes on the forum and I don't recall ever see a rude post. Straightforward, yes, bu rude, no. In fact, usually a pretty good source of info. Glad to see you two got straight.

As for my two cents, I have not seen a tasting party you are talking of (love the idea though), but I did recently go to a show where mini cupcakes were given out as samples, but then you could also buy a box of regular-sized cupcakes to go. I hope you post what you end up doing and how it works out for you. I may have to do something similar in a few months, before the holidays.
post #14 of 17
Which target market are you trying to reach? If your goal is to get people to try your cupcakes who haven't tried them before, posting on your FB page to friends, family, and previous customers may not be the most productive approach.

You may be better off with ads on Google and FB that hit outside your circle of friends, doing some cross-promoting with a reputable party planner or venue, and/or taking out print ads in local media that target your ideal customers.
post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the input everyone! My business is very new and from my home so I am reaching out to current clients as wee as new. My current clients know my flavors are amazing but it would be nice to give them the opportunity.

I guess my thought is if I charge and send them home with something they don't feel like they are paying to sample my product and I can put a lot more into it, provide more flavors not having to foot the entire bill. But I completely agree with everyone on why you would not charge.

In regards to networking with other vendors, I have reached out to an event planner that I work closely with. She has agreed to invite her clients as well.
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