Kayisha Thompson, Founder of De L’or Cakery Corporation. Photo used with permission. All rights reserved.
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
Balboa Capital invited business owners to participate in an essay-writing contest. The concept was to write a short essay on what it takes to become a successful small business and include real-world tips and information. The response to our first-ever Small Business Success Contest was overwhelming. Balboa Capital received hundreds of well-written essays, making choosing a clear-cut winner very difficult. That being said, we felt the overall message of Kayisha Thompson’s essay was excellent, so hers took top honors. In addition, we wish her business, De L’or Cakery Corporation, continued success. Below is Kayisha’s essay, which outlines her secrets to cake decorating business success.
A sweet beginning.
“My interest in the art of cake decorating peaked in 2008 after relocating to the south. I took a few cake decorating courses between 2008 and 2011 at various places, including the Viking® Cooking School in Atlanta, Georgia. Then, I reached out to LegalZoom® to register a small business name.
“While completing some recreational courses, I began posting pictures on my Facebook™ page. A well-known Florida-based jewelry seller (an entrepreneur herself) recommended that I start a Facebook™ business page with a professional logo created by a graphic designer.”
Perfecting the cake-making craft.
“I researched licensing information and registered as an event planning company since I was baking on a small scale. At the time, my kitchen did not meet cottage requirement laws. Simultaneously, after completing my third Wilton Method® course, my instructor announced openings and encouraged me to apply. I applied to teach cake decorating and was approved. Having the opportunity to teach cake decorating strengthened my skills.
“I used my Facebook™ business page to post the cake decorating courses I was teaching at a local JOANN™ store. To date, I have taught well over 150 students of all ages, from kids to adults. I became a Wilton Method® Instructor and could enjoy many great benefits, including complimentary supplies and discounts on products from their catalog.”
Taking it to the next level.
“I knew there was a lot to learn about the cake decorating business, so I purchased a “How to Become a Cake Decorator” guide which provided me with an abundance of helpful tips and information. Then, someone told me about Women Intelligently Networking, a boot camp event. So I registered as a vendor and supplied complimentary cake and cheesecake.
“From that event, I realized the power of business networking and went on to do several interviews. I did one radio interview with Tamara Eckles of ‘Jem of the South.’ Ms. Eckles’ motto is ‘searching for something sweet,’ and her show is geared towards bakers, cake decorators, ice cream makers, sugar artisans, etc.”
“Learn to create your own buzz! I have auditioned for Food Network™ and TLC™ shows. I even made it to round three for one show. Although I was not picked, I wrote a blog post about it. In addition, I give back to the community by offering complimentary cupcakes or gift certificates to reputable non-profit organizations. This is tax-deductible and allows you to obtain new leads. You should write blog posts and send newsletters on a weekly or monthly basis.
“Depending on your ultimate goal, you may want to consider creating YouTube™ videos. However, it is best to research and find out if it is a smart move. I have seen some videos that are not career-worthy. I hope you enjoyed my small business success essay, and have a wonderful day.”
The road to sweet success.
De L’or Cakery Corporation is a five-star artisan cake catering company that offers gourmet cupcakes, gourmet wedding cakes, special occasion cakes, gourmet cake jars, and gourmet cakesicles. De L’or Cakery Corporation also provides online and in-person classes, where you can learn the essentials of baking, cake decorating, frosting, filling, and more.
Balboa Capital, a Division of Ameris Bank, is not affiliated with nor endorses De L’or Cakery Corporation, Viking Cooking School, LegalZoom, Facebook, Wilton Method, JOANN, Food Network, TLC, or YouTube. The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.