Cooking, at its very best, can be a hugely creative and rewarding activity. In fact, it can also make a fabulous career as well, especially if you set up your own business providing catering, artisan bread, or even decorative cake or cookie services. However, being successful in this industry isn’t just a matter of having the talent to create a great product. In fact, you need to be able to successfully run the business side of things as well. Something you can find out more about in the post below.
Love making cakes in your spare time? Adore flooding cookies with royal icing, and mixing up the batter for fresh made profiteroles? Well, that is all well and good, but just because you are fantastic at the skill of cooking doesn’t necessarily mean that there will be a viable market for what you love to make.
In fact, the niche you pick need to be one in which you can work your creative magic, but that there is an established need for as well. That means if you are offering high-end buffet catering services, you will need to position yourself within the right geographical market to make this work.
Additionally, if you are creating decorative celebration cakes consider whether there is anyone else doing this in your area, what they are charging, and whether there is enough of a market to sustain your business as well. Of course, if the answer is no, then you need to come up with another concept such as teaching those skills. Something that would enable you to do what you love but also market yourself to an entirely different demographic, thus making your business much more viable.
Next, when it comes to running a successful creative catering business, you need to have the right equipment to be able to make your products. Of course, this need will differ depending on what you intend your final product to be, and many people start out working from their own kitchens.
To succeed in creative catering you will need the right equipment.
If you do decide to do this, you need to be aware that you will need to adhere to specific hygiene procedures and go through a process of inspection and accreditation from your local council as well, something that not all private kitchens are suited to pass.
Don’t stress if this is the case for your business though, because you always have the option of having a professional kitchen created for your needs. Something that can not only make it easier to adhere to the strict hygiene code necessary to run a catering business, but also make the creation process more productive, streamline, and even enjoyable as well.
The best thing is that there are industrial kitchen installation specialists out there that can help you create precisely the space that you need, no matter what your business’s specifications. Something that can significantly contribute to the smooth running, and long term success of your business endeavour.
Once you have your niche and your equipment sorted, it will be time to let people know that you are available for work. This is where the process of marketing comes in, and there are two distinct way to go about this.
The first is through more traditional channels such as flyers, leaflets, and even print advertising. The idea being that you distribute these resources to people that best meet your target demographic.
If you choose to go along this route, you must remember that your contact details need to be visible on any marketing material that you create and if possible refer people to your website for further information, as well.
Also when it comes to real work marketing don’t forget that in catering you are providing two things, service and an edible product. That means when you meet people face to face you need to be polite and helpful, and wherever possible offer a small sample of the food that reflects your best work.
The second option is of course online marketing, which is not only a cost-effective way of getting the message out that you are available for business but is also highly efficient as well.
The cornerstone of any online marketing will be your website, and this needs to not only be easy to read and navigate but also designed with your target demographic in mind. What that means is that if you are marketing a high-end wedding catering company, the design and images used need to reflect this, as this will confirm your validity and authority in the areas to any visitors.
In addition to your website, you may also use SEO, PPC, and social media advertising as well. You can get an even more targeted approach by using micro marketing where you can direct your message specifically to people that are likely to be interested. Something that can help to increase the success of your business.
4. Supplies and Costing
Another crucial aspect of running a successful catering company is getting a hold of your costings and supply chain. This is so important because the profit margin within catering are often minimal, meaning that if you are paying too much for any one supply, it can all but decimate any money you will make from that product.
Additionally, it can be quite complicated to work out exactly how much of a particular product you use, and so how much that costs you for every unit that you create, especially if you are making customised cakes, pastries, and biscuits.
Happily, there is now some advanced software and apps on the market in which you can input your supply cost, and that will then work out the right retail prices for your products. Something that ensures you can make enough of a profit to stay successful over the long term.
5. Trends and Education
Lastly, when it comes to successfully running a creative catering company, staying up to date with the latest trends and techniques is crucial.
With that in mind, be sure to keep an eye out on social media for the latest fashions, and don’t be shy about spending time and on occasion, a little money on learning how to do these yourself. The reason being that doing so can often set you apart from your competitors and allow you to charge the highest prices for your products.