I’ve decided to start a bakery – Natalie’s Bakehouse!!
Just writing that down feels good. I’ve always loved baking and cake decorating, but it was something I always did on the side…after my “real” job. This year, I plan to make baking my real job — and I’m excited!
I’ve been doing custom cakes on the side for a year so I already rent a commercial kitchen, have a retail food license (currently for catering), have a retail sales tax number, and have a good start on my own scratch recipes (some original, some from my grandmother). I’m in the process of starting a business plan and getting help with some basic market research to make sure I have a market. And I’m reading like crazy to understand what I need to do to be smart about this. I decided to blog because it occurred to me that others might benefit by following along, plus writing has always helped me clarify my thinking. So join me as I open Natalie’s Bakehouse!
I know how to bake, but running a business is new to me. So I’ve started my quest with many books on starting a bakery and any online entrepreneur classes I can find. I haven’t found any books I absolutely love yet as they all want to focus on recipes instead of business. I mean maybe I’m wrong, but wouldn’t most people looking to open a bakery already know how to bake?? What I was hoping to find was how to estimate my market, where to start in sourcing product, and how to streamline my production process, I haven’t found that at all yet, so if you know a good book, please let me know!
I did find a website I like though: www.marketingprofs.com
You can join this site for free and get access to a lot of content on business and marketing. I opted to pay for the pro membership because there were several premium seminars I wanted to take. Their Small Business Series has been particularly helpful in helping me understand the market research I need to do. Check them out, but if you do opt to go pro, make sure to first sign up for the free membership because they will then email you a coupon for a discount on the pro membership. Their forum is a great place to ask questions, and there are real experts sending answers.
So still studying and studying and studying….but next time I’ll update you on what I’ve learned.
“The biggest mistake people make in life is not trying to make a living at doing what they most enjoy.”
― Malcolm S. Forbes