In a world where we are bombarded by standards that are often set by key marketing strategists, it's difficult to know what’s what. We often run out and buy for the sake of buying, instead of purchasing for a need or a ‘real’ want. Spur of the moment and impulse buys are the things that keep us going as manufacturers. If a consumer wants it or demands it, we will make it happen. That has never been truer than it is now.
So how do you, the one doling out money (sometimes lots of it), differentiate in a sea of unending choices? Personal likes and dislikes factor in. We sample based on recommendations, and often ‘go for it’ if it seems appealing. Foodies and Food Bloggers can make or break a business. One horrific remark, or a bad review can destroy a company if those writing and commenting have clout! So how does one stay afloat or even make it in this temperamental landscape of goodies?
No matter what, you must ALWAYS (and I can’t emphasis that enough) have a good product to begin with. Trends will come and go. Exotic donuts, charcoal flour, piled high cones will last until the next ‘great thing’ comes along. TV show bake-offs and stunning cakes can create trends. Not to mention consumers who are always looking for cool food. They demand excellence–as they should. So, if you don’t have a delicious, well-made food as your base, you may not survive in this cut throat world of baking.
Keep up with the trends, but never deny giving a classic taste experience to your patrons. They are intelligent and wise people. They’ll jump on the fun bandwagon for a while, but will hop off once they know there’s really nothing of substance you are offering. Keep it real. Keep it fresh. And you’ll likely end up having loyal customers that will stand by your side as the markets and tastes change.