Creative Ways to Market Gift Certificates for Cooking Classes

Uncategorized Cooking Schools and Teachers

Last year, I sold gift certificates for the first time and quickly realized that it was a great way to make passive extra income. Beginning in October, I have gift cards available to sell at cooking classes. They are all $100 per gift certificate, which is equivalent to a regularly scheduled class at my home. Clients can also use the $100 gift card towards a private group class or a speaking event they organize themselves. Tucked in a craft paper envelope and attached with raffia to a branded “Smart in the Kitchen” wooden spoon, my limited edition gift certificates are ready for gifting. There are a limited number of certificates that are wrapped and ready and once those sell out, I use 8 ½ x 11 paper gift certificates.

Besides selling gift cards at all classes, events, and demos (payment can be made electronically or by check), I’ve found several good ways to market them successfully:

  • Post a photo of the packaged gift cards on social media. Payment can be sent electronically. I can email the gift card as a PDF, or clients can stop by to pick up gift certificates (30 minutes before a scheduled class).
  • Send an email blast to your subscription and newsletter list announcing the gift certificates.
  • Market the gift certificates to real estate agents and brokers in your area. Cooking classes make a great gifts for new home owners.
  • Make the gift certificates available to Mom groups and playgroups in your area.

Marcia Smart’s company, Smart in the Kitchen, teaches cooking classes out of her home, at Central Market Cooking School, and at various other locations in the Houston area. She also leads cooking retreats twice a year and speak to women’s groups, church groups, and non-profit organizations about weeknight meals and meal plans.

Excerpted from the Fall 2018 edition of the IACP Cooking Schools and Teachers newsletter

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