Two years ago, when I was still with HP and we didn’t go back for Chinese New Year, I attempted to make Lou Sang at home for our own consumption with the help of my maid. I was pretty happy with the outcome, and we all had a good supply of Lou Sang throughout the entire CNY. We even gave some to our Church’s Pastor family to try.
This year, some crazy idea came to my mind, since I’m making Lou Sang for my own consumption again, why not make a business out of it. Lou Sang is a common dish in KL. We eat them starting from weeks before CNY, up till Chap Goh Mei itself. But in HK, it’s either too expensive (those selling in hotels) or difficult to find. Even pre-packed ones are not easily made available. So I decided that I should test market. Who knows it can be a hit in HK.
I started preparing the ingredients and market my Lou Sang during Church Christmas Party. Prepared 2 big dish for everyone to try to get some feedback. There were a lot of positive tone. At the same time, I also told my church members I’ll be selling these during CNY, they could order from me.
I also bought different sizes of zip lock bags for storing of the ingredients. Initially I thought of just putting ingredients into the paper back, but Hon gave me idea to put them in aluminium foil tray, together with chopsticks so it’s like ready to eat anywhere anytime. It was great idea, but sourcing of the tray was a pain. Good thing, he managed to find some tray in Daiso, Narita during his night stop, so he bought some for me for the packaging.
Then I prepared flyers, so I could distribute it among friends via whats app. Wasn’t too difficult to get this done using photoshop and some of my digital scrapbook material. Hon helped to do the write up after he complain my write up was rubbish . Aside from the flyer, I also prepared a more detail write up on the Lou Sang, meaning of all the ingredients & how to eat Lou Sang in style . I also manage to get my friend to help translate both the flyers & write up to Chinese so it could reach a greater community.
I sent them all to my friends in HK. I also put it up on my instagram and finally revive my Facebook to post this important flyer on my Facebook page.
Orders started pouring in. At first it was rather slow. Then I decided to prepare some for my Zumba friends to try (mostly Filipino). Whoa they love it and all of them ordered from me.
Things started to get really hectic 2 weeks before CNY as I had to prepare all the materials before hand, do the packaging & delivery as well. At the same time, I was being ambitious, I baked some cookies for CNY celebration as well (not for sale OK).
I had an excel worksheet where I keep track of my cost, my capital investments & orders.
It was like running project again, but this time of a different scale and not involving IT.
It was tiring, but I sure had fun and some great sense of accomplishment. For once I felt like I’m a Project Manager again, after leaving the workforce for more than 1 year. Workaholic Syndrome hahaha.
Today, is the last day of CNY. I am also delivering my last order of Lou Sang to my church friend’s Chap Goh Mei Party. Business been pretty good (unexpected) and I’m sure next year I’m going to do this at a larger more capable scale. Now I need to start a business plan .