I’m still having a hard time wrapping my head around why a Cupcake ATM would be successful, but this unique way to satisfy your sweet tooth is gaining traction across the US.
The Cupcake ATM was invented by Sprinkles Bakery – a cupcakery in Beverly Hills already known for being an innovator by being the first bakery dedicated to cupcakes. With 9 ATM locations already and 3 more coming soon, this trend doesn’t appear to be going away any time soon. So let’s take a look at what this could mean for your bakery.
How Does It Work?
These machines are located outside of their locations across the country. They work like a traditional vending machine, but instead of serving up stale, pre-packaged treats, these machines are filled throughout the day by the team inside the bakery. So the treats are always fresh, and available 24/7 – even when the bakery is closed! Check out this quick video that shows it in action:
Competing Against Convenience Is Not a New Threat
Bakeries are always having to compete against convenience-based sweets. Grocery stores are constantly stocked with “fresh” (and I do use that term loosely) sweets in their bakery or deli sections.
The frozen sections are full of desserts that can be as simple as “thaw and eat.” Some are almost as easy to prepare, such as pies and other desserts that just require taking them out of the packaging and baking according the directions on the box. And let’s not forget the ever-growing assortment of desserts in a box that range from cakes, to cupcakes, to brownies, and pies.
With so many convenient and budget-friendly alternatives to walking into your bakery to get their sweet fix, the cupcake ATM is nothing out of the ordinary when it comes to competition for you.
So, How Do You Compete With It?
The easiest and most successful way to compete with any form of competition that removes human interaction is to remind people why getting to know you is better. It can be easy for people to want to find a way in the hustle and bustle of life to be quicker and more efficient where they can, but choosing a baked good is not a good time to be hands off.
Choosing the right treat is not as simple as looking at a picture of your choice. If it was, then people would just stick to buying snack cakes that come in plastic packages served in cardboard boxes. Walking into a bakery is a sensory experience that you can’t get from an ATM. The beautiful decorating on the desserts, the aromas that take you back to baking with your grandmother, and the friendly smile of the baker that is proud of her creations are all part of the experience.
So make sure to remind your customers how special they are, and how the experience walking into your bakery is better than they could get from an ATM.