Small Enterprise sat down with Katie Cross, director of vegan bakery Cake or Death, one of many three winners of the Small Enterprise x Sage pop-up store competitors.
Cake or Loss of life was considered one of three successful companies chosen by our professional panel to occupy a pop-up store area in London’s busy Oxford Avenue earlier this month.
The Devon-based bakery creates luxurious brownies delivered via your letterbox in iconic pink leopard-print bins. The Impartial named the mail-order bakery Greatest Letterbox Deal with in 2020.
Lifelong baking fanatic Katie Cross began her vegan cake enterprise in 2019 promoting on to bakeries, cafés and eating places. She pivoted the enterprise to promoting direct in the course of the pandemic.
Earlier than her reinvention as a star baker, Katie Cross loved a profitable profession as a fundraiser and marketer within the charity sector, working for the NSPCC and Greenpeace UK, amongst others.
The place did the thought of Cake or Loss of life come from?
It developed over numerous years. It began once I utilized for The Nice British Bake Off. I received fairly far via the audition course of though I didn’t really get onto the programme, which was an incredible disappointment. However I feel it confirmed me that I had a ardour for baking, and that I wished to pursue it as a profession. So, over the subsequent yr I experimented with baking and some occasions and that received me to the purpose the place I used to be able to give up my day job.
How lengthy has Cake or Loss of life been in enterprise?
We’ve been operating for four-and-a-half-years now. We began as a wholesale cake enterprise, however we needed to pivot sadly at the beginning of the pandemic as a result of most of our wholesale prospects needed to shut their doorways. We determined to ship our brownies, which had been our hottest product, via the put up in letterbox-sized bins and now 1000’s of individuals ship them as presents, largely to household and mates.
What made you resolve to enter the Small Enterprise x Sage pop-up store competitors?
Two years in the past, Cake or Loss of life moved from its kitchen in London to sunny Devon, which was a private transfer for myself and my household. We’ve arrange a bakery in Exeter. The concept of getting a presence in London for 4 days was actually thrilling. Lots of my prospects are based mostly in Londoners, and I knew I may get them to come back and see us within the pop-up store. It was actually thrilling to be in such a busy a part of the town.
What’s your expertise been of being within the pop-up store?
I do assume that footfall is admittedly excessive on the street, but it surely’s been tougher than I assumed to get folks to come back in. Individuals are not too certain about what the thought is. We’ve discovered probably the most profitable factor to do is to offer tasters on the street and level folks in direction of the store. Individuals are fairly reticent about strolling into a store once they don’t know what’s occurring.
What would your recommendation be to anyone getting into subsequent yr’s Sage pop-up store competitors?
You must go for it, however you want a straightforward retail-able product, and that you must really feel that the consumers on Oxford Avenue are your kind of buyer. You’ll want to have put some thought into advertising and PR. We laid some groundwork by doing a little PR work and a radio interview forward of time, and we reached out to Instagram influencers to come back and see us on the primary day. We’ve additionally been priming our prospects for per week to come back and see us. Doing that groundwork is admittedly necessary.
Extra on the Sage pop-up store competitors
Sage pop-up store winner #1 – Deborah Maclaren, LoveReading – Deborah Maclaren, managing director of LoveReading, sits down with SmallBusiness to speak about what successful one of many three coveted spots within the Sage pop-up store competitors means to her
Sage pop-up store winner #3 – Katie Hanton-Parr, Baboodle – Katie Hanton-Parr, founding father of Baboodle, tells Small Enterprise what successful the Sage pop-up store competitors has meant for her on-line child tools subscription enterprise