Today’s interview is with Carol of Carol’s Cookies. Please visit their website, Facebook and Twitter pages. Don’t forget to enter the big anniversary giveaway as well for a chance to win a year’s worth of cookies!
When I grew up in Saginaw, Michigan, my mother used to bake with me and my sisters. One made cakes, one made pies and I made the cookies. After having my kids, I filled my time with baking again and friends and family pleaded with me to turn my hobby into a real business.
I was in charge of the “snack bar” at our workout facility (which was a few dance studio rooms more or less). It wasn’t to make money, just for fun. One of the women told me to bring my handmade cookies to an upscale, local grocery store called Sunset Foods. They told me to demonstrate the product and sell which I could. I sold out in less than two hours and the rest is history. The photo is an advertisement running at Sunset Foods right now to honor our 35th anniversary and them being my first account.
I also see you just celebrated 35 years in business that’s quite a milestone! How has the business changed during that time?
This year marks our 35th anniversary of making handmade cookies. The business went from me baking in my home kitchen to making nearly 3 million cookies by hand in 2013. We sell to hundreds of upscale stores including Whole Foods across the United States and have distribution points from coast-to-coast. What hasn’t changed is the quality, we still make everything in small batches, crack our own eggs and source 95% of our products within 100 miles of our bakery. See this link to an article published on Tuesday which tells a little bit more about our company.
How does technology play into your company? Do you or your key employees use a smartphone or tablet to manage the business? If so, what are your favorite apps?
Because we make everything by hand, the technology piece for us is primarily external. We are putting a lot of our efforts behind social media channels and building our online gift business via our website. We want Carolscookies.com to be the go to destination for people looking for handmade cookies. There has been a discussion about a build-your-own cookie app, but we are not there yet.
How have you found being a mom and balancing a business? Do you have any tips to share with our readers?
Family always comes first. You have to view business as an outlet, and if you can make a living off of doing what you love, your family will support you. Raising kids and launching a business isn’t easy, but you need to challenge yourself every day and be excellent at organizing your life. . . if those pieces fall into place, you can have fun building a business from the ground up.
What are your plans for the future?
We are looking at expanding our bakery to a new facility as we have grossly outgrown our current space.
Any news you want to share with The iMums?
We are just launching our new mini candy cookies at Whole Foods in the Midwest and in Colorado in May so look out for that. Also, don’t forget to enter The #SweetestMom In Your Life Today On Our Facebook Page:http://bit.ly/1nm7udQ
Thank you so much for talking with us today and sharing a bit about your company. We really appreciated the chance to get to know you! One other thing, for those of us who have families with allergies, Carol’s Cookies makes a nut free and gluten free option as well which is delicious! We are lucky enough to host a cookie giveaway ourselves here – so be sure to enter via the Rafflecopter widget below.
If you would like to win a free tin of cookies, please enter via the widget below. Winners will be emailed and must contact The iMums within 48 hours to claim their prize. This giveaway is open to those with a valid United States mailing address to claim the prize. Please ensure you have read and understand our Terms & Conditions. Good luck!