Today’s discussion is about getting started with your own cake/dessert business.
I recently received the following question via an Instagram DM and it’s a great topic for discussion:
I want to start a business of mini desserts & cakes. If I don’t have enough money to start this business, where should I start to take it off the ground?
In my opinion, the best way to go about it is to start small. That’s how I started. I didn’t have a huge lump sum of money to invest into starting CTB.
At the time that I decided to start a little side baking gig of my own, I had a full time job and I’d just make little purchases every time I got paid. As time went on, I stocked up on ingredients, equipment, supplies, tools, etc. I carved out time to try new techniques, test recipes, and brainstorm what I wanted for my business such as menu items and offerings, cake flavors, etc.
Market Your Business
Like any business, building your clientele is everything. I started off just baking for family and close friends while I continued to work on my craft. I’d share my creations on FB and IG every time. Word of mouth works wonders as well and is a great way to get more people to know about what you offer. It’s good to start small because as you grow, your clientele will grow.
But even if I wasn’t baking for an order or for anyone in particular, I’d bake for content. I didn’t have a lot of money to be able to pay anyone to market my business, so I leaned heavily on Instagram (the best platform to market your business AND it's free) and created my own website. I studied the business aspect and insights behind Instagram, took time to take nice pictures, spent time designing my website, and taught myself some basic marketing skills to be able to reach more people. A great focus is marketing and promoting yourself to get your name out there. It’s important to be consistent and that alone will drive people to your business. It’s a process that requires patience but focusing on building a loyal clientele will pay off and you can save up to achieve the goals you want for the direction that you want your business to go in.
Invest In Yourself
I think if you plan to turn your passion or hobby of baking into a business, it’s important that you invest in yourself to build it into exactly what you want it to be. This takes time and lots of trial and error but it’s worth it. Take a little bit of money weekly or monthly and create some business cards, get a logo designed if you want to, take classes, start your website with detailed info on you and your business, etc.
Start to build the foundation for your business little by little and while you do this, you can save money from any orders you have to be able to grow the business. To simulate what I’m saying, I think instead of jumping straight into a full blown business, it’s good to get familiar with what it’s like to be an entrepreneur and really take the time to learn the in’s and outs and dos and dont’s. Figure out what you like and what you don’t like when it comes to running a business. Set some goals and work on achieving those no matter how long it takes.
So Imagine that you did have a large lump sum of money to start your business. Would you?
Maybe you would if you could afford a business manager and financial advisor to guide you in the direction to create a successful business but in my opinion it’s important to take those baby steps.
I suggest setting achievable financial goals for what you’d like to put into growing your business.
Every time you have an order, any money that you make should go right back into building your business and making little purchases until you’re at the point where you can make a profit to slowly start saving for the big picture, whether it’s a shop/storefront, remodeling space to create a home cake/dessert studio, becoming a published author and creating your own cookbook, etc.
What are your thoughts? Feel free to join in and let me know your process or what worked for you. If you're having any challenges or if I can help you uncover any opportunities, please share your comments, questions, and/or stories. Looking forward to chatting!