I must say I tried giving free cupcakes to my day job as well as my husband’s job early on in attempt to try to get some business from colleagues. Many would say how fabulous they are and so delicious and lots of comments about doing their kid’s birthdays and what not… but when the time came I was not approached for an order. So I stopped giving away freebies to them. You are right, it is really hard to start off not knowing anyone. I live 3000 miles away from my family and old friends and haven’t really developed any close knit ties here nor do I have children yet so I don’t have birthday parties to make cakes for and get other mom’s to take notice… so getting started has been difficult because you don’t have that built-in group of people you can make cakes for and grow from there. I tried selling at a farmer’s market and it was way too much work for no profit and only translated to a handful of private orders. Luckily with word of mouth (slow as it may be) and great client referrals, two year later, I have steady work and busy weekends so I can’t complain. Still not enough to quit my day job but I’m happy because I’m feeding my passion for cakes and I know eventually I can focus on this full time. I agree with the other artists to explore all avenues and try get involved whereever you can. If you have Indian groups or communities which have events, try to pursuade them to let you make a cake for it – even for just the cost of your ingredients or maybe even free – it might spark interest. Use social media and share your cakes. Make a great website. Work with charitable organizations and donate cakes to Icing Smiles or local organizations; Look for county fairs – many have baking/cake contests. I know some people send cupcakes to local papers and magazines in hopes of a write up. I’ve never done this but it’s an option. People don’t know you exist so you have to get in front of their face somehow. This is a hard business to get started but keep at it and things will improve – your passion will drive you to keep going. Good luck!
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