Yoba Frozen Yogurt

A New Year…

Posted on: January 6, 2011

A new year and a new start to this blog. I am usually not one to make any New Year’s Resolutions, but this year, if I have one goal, is to maintain this blog on a more consistent level. Now I know I have said this before in the past, but I’m really going to try to keep my word this time. I hope all of you had a wonderful holiday with your family and friends. Although I did spend the majority of my time here at the store, I did enjoy myself on Christmas and New Years Eve with some time off. I caught up on my sleep and ate some delicious food at the various parties that I attended. I hope that will last me through the spring.

It’s been a little over a month since we have opened our doors here at Yoba Frozen Yogurt and it has been a mixture of elation, hardships, and at times a battle of self-confidence. I kind of thought it would be neat for this post to write down a list for myself on some of the things I wish I had known before hand about business, some of the things I have learned over this past month, and my goals for the near future. Hopefully I can look back upon this list over the course of this year and continue to expand it as the business hopefully grows.

What I wish I knew:

  • How much more difficult opening a business would be then initially thought. As usual it’s been a cold winter here Ohio and to be honest it business has not been as consistent as I had estimated in my business plans. Of course that should be expected and I have always read that you should always take your business expectations and then cut them in half to be realistic. Well, I think to be even more realistic, cut another quarter from that number. It’s always better to underestimate and outperform rather than have incredible high expectations that are unattainable.
  • Some rudimentary graphic design skills. I’m not going to pretend here that I have amazing computer technical knowledge. I don’t even own a copy of Photoshop which I now find just ridiculous. Just having some basic knowledge of graphic design would probably save me some money here in the future along with just creating better looking business cards, flyers, and other promotional items without relying generic templates. This is one of my goals to improve on this year.
  • Marketing experience and/or knowledge. I think I’m just having a tough time right now deciding on how to spend my allocated advertising dollars. What is the most effective way to market this brand of Yoba Frozen Yogurt? What is our customer profile and what will encourage them to come into the store? What kinds of promotion would be the most effective while also moving the company into the direction that I want? These are just a small portion of the questions that continuously pour through my mind everyday. I need to make a decision quickly too.

What I have learned and improved on:

  • My organizational and time-management skills. It’s just not about me anymore. I have just so many hours in the day to maintain the store, keep track of inventory, accounting, and numerous other things. I have to definitely give a shout-out to my father whose has helped me immensely over this past month, but eventually all of these things will have to become more efficient and organized. My room could still use some work though….volunteers??
  • Store operations. I had no experience working in a frozen yogurt or ice cream store prior to this venture. My only food experience was working as a waiter at China Cottage for about a year in college. Therefore I was basically flying blind when we opened the store. However now with a month’s worth of data, I have a much more concrete understanding of the operations in the store. How much each particular topping costs, along with how much it actually costs us to serve each and every customer. The numbers were not pretty. However I think the most important aspect of this business is to maintain solid portion control while giving the customer’s their value worth of product. There is nothing more important than having a customer be nothing less than happy about their purchase.
  • My management skills. At least I hope so, you might have to ask my employees personally. My toughest aspect so far has been in trying to keep my labor costs low while maintaining quality customer service all while keeping my employees motivated and happy to be part of the Yoba family. I have to thank all of my employees for putting up with general craziness this past month too. They have just been an awesome bunch, ready to greet each and every customer, maintaining the store, and making some awesome looking frozen yogurt and bubble teas.

My Goals in the coming months:

  • Going back to a previous point, market, market, and market. I need to find an effective way to market this brand. I know we sell a solid and delicious product, but how do I get people to actually come into the store. Keeping costs low can only grow the business so much, sales is what really drives and expands.
  • Get our actual website up and running.
  • Decorate the interior of the store. I love how simple and focused the design of the store is right now, but I just feel that there needs to be a splash of color somewhere to really take it to the next level. I am open to any and all suggestions.
  • Continue to improve operations and make them efficient as possible so we will be completely ready for the spring and summer seasons.

That’s all for now. I’m sure this list is going to expand quickly from here on out, but I think writing this all out will help keep me focused and driven through these tough winter months. If you haven’t been to Yoba Frozen Yogurt and want to know more about the concept you can read our reviews on Yelp at http://www.yelp.com/biz/yoba-frozen-yogurt-dayton as well as liking our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Yoba-Frozen-Yogurt/117673521617757.

Thanks,

Will

Yoba Frozen Yogurt

On my Agenda:

  • My friend Neal just made a website http://athleteamazing.com/ which basically consists of awesome sports videos (mainly videos of Blake Griffin humiliating people). Cool website to spend a bit of your day with.
  • A couple blog shout-outs for my friends too here. Joel at http://joeljean.wordpress.com/ and Esther at http://estherxyu.blogspot.com/. Both are much better writers than me.
  • I saw Black Swan last night. It was…interesting. I can see why people are loving the movie and I definitely appreciate the concept, however it wasn’t for me. Natalie Portman was very good in it though.
  • Finally a cool video that was sent to me on the science on what motivates us. I usually don’t promote YouTube videos, but this is actually a very interesting watch.
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3 Responses to "A New Year…"

I just wanted to let you know I love the store and the product! It could use some more user friendly seating, but you product is what really shines.

There is nothing like it in the area and you should look to chains like pinkberry to see how they market their product. I would suggest getting on a couple more social media sites like twitter and foursquare and actively participating.

I’ve gotten a lot of traffic that way. I also think that once the italian place a couple doors down from you opens up that will help foot traffic to your store quite a bit. It’s all uphill from here!!

Good luck!

hellllo,(:
I would like to start out by saying I have had your frozen yogurt four times since you opened and every time it got better, but me and my mom are on a strict diet since new years started and i cannot seem to find the nutritional facts or calorie count of your frozen yogurt. I know there is no fat but my mom is trying to cut out sugar, i would love to know how many grams are in each serving and if your thinking of coming out with a sugar free frozen yogurt. I would like to say agian your yougurt is amazing and i think buisness will be packed in the summer when people are looking ofr a nice and cold refreshing treat !
gooood luck ! Noelle.(:

Lea: Thanks for the comments and advice. Looking for any avenue of help right now 🙂 Also by spring I hope our seating situation will have vastly improved. Thanks!

Noelle: Hi Noelle, I just posted up our nutritional information onto the about section of this blog as well on the info section of our Facebook Page. Unfortunately, all of our yogurts do contain sugars. We have tried working with sugar-free yogurts and they just do not taste comparable. Hopefully one day in the future we would be able to provide some sugar-free frozen yogurts though. Thanks for the comments!!

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