ENTREPRENEURSHIP / APR. 08, 2014
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How to Turn Your Baking Hobby Into a Business

Everyone has different hobbies involving anything from collecting baseball cards to building birdhouses. Baking is one of those hobbies that many people enjoy and many people excel at. What is the difference between a hobby and a hobby becoming a business? The answer is a lot. Lets explore some of the steps you would need to take in order to turn your homemade pies into a promising dream business.

Skill Level

This seems obvious, but you need to be skilled in baking before you venture out into the business world. The whole point of taking your baking skills to the market is for people to buy your products. If you have a great product, you're on the right track. If you're the person that is elected to bring baked goods every holiday because they're so great, you should take a good look at your skills.

Baking is all about practice. If you have spent hundreds of hours in the kitchen and have perfected some recipes, it's time to start researching. 

Research The Market

These are some of the areas you need to focus on and ask yourself:

  • Is there a demand for your product?
  • What similar ideas are out there and how are you going to set yourself apart?
  • Look into how much the baking industry is making. You may need to be more specific, it depends on what you're offering. If you want to focus strictly on cupcakes, then focus your research on the cupcake market as well as the baking market as a whole. 

Have an Idea

What is your idea and how are you going to be different from all the other baked goods out there? You may have amazing tasting products, but so do a lot of other bakeries and baking businesses. What is it about your idea that makes you special? Start thinking about:

  1. Packaging: Is there a fun, new way that you can wrap your baked goods?
  2. Ingredients: Do you offer interesting flavours and ingredients?
  3. Health: The health food industry is booming; you could possibly try and incorporate health into your baking (since baked goods tend to be bad for you).
  4. Your name: This is a big one. You need something catchy and easy to remember. Do you research regarding the desired name. There is no point in spending money on a logo or any advertising if that name is already taken. (click here for information).
  5. A logo: What do you want your logo to say? People should be able to look at your logo and get a rough idea of what you're all about. It needs to be memorable as well. 

Money

The majority of people begin their business as a way to make money. With that being said, it costs money to start a business. Make sure you have enough put away to cover your expenses. You have to be confident in your product. Do not spend mass amounts of money until you have done your research. 

Not only do you need to be conscious of money when starting the business, but you need to be smart about pricing. Make sure you are covering all your expenses and since you're baking the goods, charge for your labour and time. Give yourself a decent profit margin.  

Where to Sell

Where to sell depends on your product and the type of inventory you have. Here are some ideas on where to sell your products:

  • Approach supermarkets
  • Farmers markets
  • Health food stores (if you're taking the healthy approach)
  • Bakeries 
  • Restaurants (many restaurants out source their baking needs)
  • Events (e.g. weddings or graduations)
  • Invest in your own bakery

It really depends on what your target market is. These are all the things you should map out long before taking your product to the market.

So, if you are one of those fabulous bakers; think about being your own boss. Make sure you take all the proper steps and do not cut corners. If you are going to do it, do it right. Make sure you have a solid plan, do your research and have the money to back you up. If you already have the skills, jump into the business world. Start turning your hobby into a business today. 

 

Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/decafinata/290467645

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