Tag Archives: Truffas

What we learned from our bocaditos selling experience

At the end of the 4 days of making and selling bocaditos we took a few moments to reflect on the things we had gained and learned from that experience. And we thought we’d share them with you:).

  1.  When selling a product or service, give something for free first. People will be much more inclined to buy from you after that. This was one of the most surprising and important lesson we learned. The mamacha we had lunch from one of the days said she’ll buy one. She ate it while we were still eating our food, and as we were preparing to leave she said “Oh wait, I’ll pay you for the bocadito”. Without thinking we just said “It’s ok, it’s on us”. She then smiled, thanked us and said “Ok, I will buy two more then”. Another day we were entering a stadium and didn’t know we were meant to pay an entrance fee. When we told the lady that we just wanted to give one round to see if anyone wanted bocaditos, she let us go in for free. On the way out we went to offer her a bocadito as a sign of gratitude for her gesture. She was touched and on top of the bocadito we gave her she bought another one. And the examples could go on and on. Every such event would make us not only love these people more, but understand once more that it’s the giving first that makes the difference later.
  2. Provided you have good morals, you will NOT do well if you’re selling a product you don’t believe in or if you’re uncomfortable about anything related to that product/service (unless you’re very good at lying. But then again, does lying to make a living help you sleep well at night?). The first day, upon seeing how the kids reacted to the price we quoted, I started to feel very uncomfortable about selling the bocaditos for 1 Sol, as I felt they were too expensive for the place we were in. As a result, I didn’t sell as many as Boca and Katya did, who were ok with the price we set because they felt it was fair.
  3.  Some products sell themselves (e.g. bread). If yours is not one of them, know it’s then your attitude that sells. We were looking at the mamachas selling bread, or even food for lunch. They didn’t need to put any effort in selling because people needed to eat. But people didn’t necessarily need to have desserts, and even if they badly wanted it there were so many others to choose from. So we had to use our “charm” when selling, and we realised what worked best was being authentic, happy, smiley and genuinely interested in offering the people something that would make them feel good. We also noticed that the days we were happy and enthusiastic about selling were the ones when we sold the most.
  4. Don’t sell to white people things the white people can get back in their countries. We were told to go to Pisac for the Sunday market because there were going to be a lot of foreigners there and we’d surely sell the truffles in no time. Boy, were we in for a surprise! It very soon became clear our market was definitely not the foreigners, as the truffles were so common and just “the usual stuff’ for them, but instead it was the locals, as this was exotic and something they had not experienced before.
  5. Customize your products for your different target groups. We learned some things from our experience the first day, so when preparing to go to the school the next day we made the bocaditos smaller and colorful. Then, when we went to the market in Pisac we took it a step forward, and we had 3 sizes/types of truffles: for the adults with a sweet tooth, for the adults who just wanted to try, and for the children. Yup, it pretty much worked 🙂
  6. How much you sell one day depends on so many factors that you can’t beat yourself up for sales being lower one day than you had expected. What you can do is sit down and analyze at the end of the day, so you’ll know what to do next and what needs to be changed.
  7. If something doesn’t work, change it! Einstein defined insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. Don’t be insane, change something! We only sold the truffles for 4 days but we changed things every day based on our observations the previous days.
  8. People will judge you, it’s up to you to understand it’s not about you but about them and not take it personally. It was so funny to observe how many foreigners were looking at us in shock, surprised that in a country like Peru, where they would expect the locals to sell any small things in the streets, they were seeing two Caucasians doing this instead. Besides that, most foreigners were used to buying sweets from proper stores, from behind a squeaky-clean glass and a germ free environment. Buying them in the middle of the street from a plate that had been taken around the market for a while was probably not their idea of “hygienic dessert”. So if we were to be intimidated by their looks we would have gone home crying after the first 5 minutes. Instead we once more embraced “As in Rome…’ and continued selling the bocaditos to the locals the way they had been doing for centuries.
  9. In an exchange, the human interaction is more exciting than the mere exchange of goods and money. If it doesn’t seem so it’s because it is done in a perfunctory manner and you as a seller are not even necessary. You might as well be replaced by a machine. We realised how true this was at the end of one day when we looked back and asked ourselves “what was your favorite moment of today?”. The answers were all to do with the people we had met while selling and the conversations we had had with them. We felt more excited about the interaction with 5 people than about the 100 bocaditos sold. Thinking about our experience as customers, we realised as well that the places we always loved going back to were those where we had developed a relationship with the people there.
  10.  You will go through moments of irritation and apathy, it’s normal, but just remember that how much you sell is directly proportional with your attitude. If you can’t change your state, close shop for an hour and light some incenses or whatever you do to relax and get back into a productive state. We realised that when we were not in a good mood we didn’t manage to sell much at all, so we were better off going home and returning the next day.
  11. When things don’t go as planned, come up with an alternative strategy fast. When we went to the school on the second day with the truffles prepared especially for the kids, we found it to be closed. We didn’t lose a second but immediately found out why, and when we were told it was due to the games in the stadium we headed to the new location asap.
  12. “The last 2 pieces, the best ones” really works. When people know this is their last chance they will be much more inclined to buy. We found it was many times easier to sell from an almost empty plate than from a full one.
  13.  If you get upset because someone didn’t buy from you, that attitude will affect your next customer. And he might not buy from you either. I remember the not so pleasant feeling I’d get every time I wanted to buy something, asked questions about the thing but in the end didn’t buy it, and then the seller got really upset about it. I’d move on and not be affected about it too much, but I’d always think about the next potential customer who’d be meeting with the bitter and unhappy face of the seller. The chances of this person sticking around and buying were much smaller (unless, as mentioned, we’re talking about a product which sells itself, in which case the attitude takes a secondary role). In any event, I found I could never get upset with the people who didn’t buy from me… it was weird almost, but I’d smile to them anyway and was just happy we had made contact. They were simply not interested, which is normal, and there would surely be other people out there who were bocaditos fans :).
  14. The intention. I recently came across this very interesting book called the Sacred Commerce, highly recommend it. One issue raised there was the intention behind doing that which brings you money, and the great difference between doing something just for the money, as opposed to doing it while being aware of the way it contributes to the customer’s life. Just a sales person, or someone who makes a difference? As with any other job, the way we see ourselves in that job creates our experience. It’s like the story of the 3 bricklayers working on building a monastery. When asked what they were doing, the first one said, “I am laying one brick over the other”. The second said: “I am constructing a building so I can feed my family”, and the third “I am helping build the mightiest cathedral ever seen”. I wonder how they each felt at the end of a day’s work, and which one was the happy one in life? It works the same for any job we have: are we just another employee, or do we make a difference to this world in any small way? It was the same for our bocadito selling experience: is our intention only to make the money, or is it also to offer the customer a delicious sweet that would make him/her feel good?
  15. Giving more than the customer expects makes you feel good, and that contributes to the great attitude that will bring you more sales. When people bought a few truffles we always gave them an extra one for free. That made them really happy and us even happier. Made us smile more and hence sell more.
  16. Recurring customers are the most efficient way to make sure you sell your stuff. You get them by the quality of the product, of course, but also by the quality of the service. And when you offer the extra bit they are not expecting, their loyalty will know no limits.

Try it and you’ll know it!:)

If you liked this post please rate it, leave a comment or share it with a friend using the buttons below.


A kekszgolyó árulás további leckéi

Másnap elkészítettük újabb adag golyóinkat, amit nem csak, hogy kisebbre csináltunk, de vettünk szines zizket, s azzal díszítettük őket, hogy a gyerekeknek jobban tetszen.

Lecke 3.: Ha egy termék nem megy olyan jól, mint ahogy mehetne, válltoztatnunk kell. A válltoztatásokat néha egyik napról a másikra kell megtenni, s nem szabad hónapokat várni, s azon gondolkodni mikor indul majd be a biznisz. Einstein mondta: Az a bolond, aki ugyan azt csinálja újra és újra, de más eredményt vár.

Lecke 4.: Ehhez kapcsolódik a rugalmasság. Sokszor hiába találunk ki valami jó ötetet, ha nem műkődik azt fel kell ismerni, s tovább lépni.

Másnap történt, hogy a helyi sport pályára mentünk el, ahol a gyerekek sportoltak. Mikor be kartunk menni a bejáratnál közölte a hölgy, hogy belépőt kell vennünk. Mi mondtuk enki, hogy csak édességet szeretnénk eladni, beendgedett minket ingyen. Kifelé, hogy megköszönjük jóságát adtunk neki egy ingyen golyót. Mire ő így felelt: köszönöm, de akkor veszek (pénzért) egy másikat.

Ebédkor a mamitát, akitől az ebédet vettük megkínáltuk egy golyóval, s mikor ki akarta fizetni, s mi mondtuk, hogy ez ajándék, így felelt: Akkor veszek még kettőt (pénzért).

Lecke 5.: Sokszor ha valamit ingyen adsz először, az motiválja az emberket, hogy vegyenek többet.

 Lecke 6.: Az utolsó kettő darab, a legfinomabbak. Az embereket motiválja, ha tudják, hogy ez az utolsó lehetőségük, hogy szert tegyenek valamire, s gyakran az utolsó darabok könnyebben elkelnek, mint egy teli tál választék.

Lecke 7.: Ha egy vevő nem vesz tőled, s te emiatt elkeseredsz, azt  a következő vevő érezni fogja, s nem lesz annyira lelkes ő sem, hogy vegyen tőled valamit.

Lecke 8.: A kedved, s beállítottságod rengeteget számít. Ha morcosan mész végig az utcán, senki nem jön oda hozzád, hogy mit árulsz, de ha msosolyogsz és jó kedvet sugárzol az emberek odavonzódnak hozzád. 

Lecke 9.: Kekszgolyónk jól ment, mert újdonság volt. Az emberek többsége azért vett, mert még nem látott és kostolt ilyet, s kiváncsi volt. Ha új terméket dobsz a piacra, vagy újítasz úgy, hogy különlegesebb egyél, mint vetélytársaid, nyert ügyed van.

Lecke 10.: Sokszor a dolgok nem úgy fognak menni, ahogy szertnéd, de akkor is a pozítív dolgokra kell koncentrálni.

Utolsó árulós napunkon elmentünk egy közeli városkába, Pisac-ba, ahol a vasárnapi nagy vásár volt. Tudtuk, hogy e napra sok külföldi túrista jön majd el,  s reméltük, hogy gyorsan adunk majd el mindent. Meglepő módon a külföldiek voltak azok, akik a leginkább nem voltak kiváncsiak ránk, s a portékáinkra. A legtöbbjük még úgy is nézett ránk, mintha leprásak lettünk volna. Persze tudtuk, hogy Dél-Amerika egyik legszegényebb országában két fehér lányt az utcán sétállva, s édességet árulva várna el az ember a legkevésbé, de ez persze nem jelenti azt, hogy árunk ne lenne jó, finom, higiénikus stb. Merthát ez az érzésünk volt, hogy amellett, hogy fehérek voltunk, édességet árultunk 2 nagy tányérról a téren sétállva. Nem pedig egy boltban vitrin mögül, ahogy azt a legtöbb európai elvárná. Ha ez elkeserített volna minket, akkor 5 perc után rohantunk volna haza sírva, de minket nem ilyen fából faragtak, s hamar kiderült, hogy a helyi árusokat viszont igen is érdekelnek a golyók, így fél óra után már csak rájuk koncentráltunk, s nem csak, hogy sikeresen adtunk el jópár golyót, de még jól el is beszélgettünk velük, sőtt volt, ahol árucserével kereskedtünk.

Egy kis keksz golyó árulás semmiségnek tűnhet, s mégis milyen sokat tanított nekünk. Ebből is látszik, hogy egy még egy apróságot sem szabad lebecsülni, mert az is taníthat nekünk valamit. Az elmúlt 8 hónap alatt próbálunk minden szituációt úgy lezárni, hogy mit tanultunk ebből. S bizony sokszor megmutatkozott, hogy nagyon hasznos volt ezt tenni. Mindennapjainkban nem tanultuk meg beépíteni a reflektálást, hogy leüljünk egy csésze kakaó mellé este, s végiggondoljuk mit csináltunk ma, ezek hogyan sikerültek, s mit tanultunk a mai nappból, esetleg miért lehetünk hálásak (mert minden nap van rengetegd dolog, amiért hálásak lehetünk). Ezzel a rutinnal szerintem rengeteget válltoztathatunk azon, hogy hogyan éljük meg mindennapjainkat.

Gyönyörű kék lagúna, s indián fejet ábrázoló árnyék a hegyoldalon, mindez a következőkben…


Banános – karamelles kekszgolyó Recept

  • ½ kg darált keksz (itt Peruban az állatos kekszet kell venni, amit kg-ra adnak, ami édes is már eleve) – 3 Soles
  • 6 banán – 1 Soles
  • 3-6 evőkanál karamell (Manjar Blanco) – 9 Soles egy 1kg-os doboz
  • 9 evőkanál árpa (oat)
  • maréknyi kókuszdara (a masszába)
  • 10ml vanillia aroma – 1 Soles
  • cukor ízlés szerint

Ezt mind összegyúrjuk, kis golyókat gyúrunk és kókuszdarába hempergetjük.


Posztjainkkal szeretnénk minnél több kérdéseteket és kiváncsiságotokat kielégíteni, így légyszives írjátok meg visszajelzésként (Leave a Reply) vagy akár emailben, hogy miről szeretnétek még hallani egy – egy országgal kapcsolatban.


Our bocaditos selling experience

Besides writing, learning about the Tzolkin, teaching 7th Path, helping Nico build his chakana temple and taking care of Anay, we did yet another thing that increased our list of “firsts”: we made truffles and sold them on the streets of Urubamba.

How we got the idea

At the Vipassana retreat we met a Swedish girl who was traveling around Peru with almost no money in her pocket and bank account. We later met many others who were doing the same, and were gaining some money along the way by making and selling different items, from food to arts and crafts. The Swedish girl told Boca how she had made and sold truffles in Cusco and was able to make pretty decent money to sustain herself there.

When Boca shared this idea with me, I was immediately fascinated! We had wanted to do things in this trip not only that we had never done before, but that we wouldn’t normally do. This sounded like the perfect such experience, and if we could make some money along the way, who has ever said no to that? 🙂

Getting started

So a few days after we moved to Urubamba we decided we found the perfect time and place to do it. Boca was careful to get the Swedish girl’s recipe and also asked her mom for other ideas, then we came up with our own recipe and we were good to go! We were to make truffles with bananas and manjar (the local caramel), topped with coconut and lots of love. Then we were to go out into town and sell them.

The first day

So one morning we woke up early full on enthusiasm and spent about 2 hours making 50 truffles we were going to sell for 1 Sol each. Katya joined our little enterprise and the 3 of us went out around mid day to tempt people with our sweets. We had to pass by the laundry place to pick up our things and, wouldn’t you know it, it so happened that the laundry place was just by a school… and the kids were coming out exactly at that time. They surrounded us and were very curious what we were selling, as this was all very new to them: first of all that we were obviously not locals, and secondly that we were selling something they had never seen before. It was a tempting change from the jelly and ice-creams they were used to buying everyday outside their school.

Unfortunately, as great as our enthusiasm was when we saw their interest, so was our disappointment when we ended up selling only 3 truffles. The problem was the price: they were used to spending 30-50 cents for their after school sweets, so most of them didn’t even have 1 Sol with them, or even if they did they found it too much to spend on a small sweet. Many asked us whether we were going to be there the next day, and we told them we most probably would. We were going to change our strategy for the next day though, and we already knew how.

We spent the next 2 hours selling the remaining 47 truffles in and around the plaza and the market. It was pretty obvious people had issues with the price, so we knew the next round the truffles would be half the size and half the price. And double the enthusiasm. We also learned that people had no idea what a “trufa” (truffle) was, so we had to change from “Would you like some truffles?” to “Would you like some bocaditos?”, which is what the locals would call a small sweet. Bocadito… we loved the sound of that. And during the night our dreams were filled with bocaditos.

The second day, with a new strategy

With the lessons from the first day internalized, we woke up early again the next morning and made 150 bocaditos we were going to sell for 50 cents each. We had changed our strategy in terms of size and price, but we also added another element: we had bought some colorful candies the previous day, so half of the bocaditos were colorful and really attractive to the eye, especially the children’s eye. We had prepared those especially for the kids at the school we had been to the previously, and we were sure they were going to be a success.

We got to the school the same time as the previous day and, surprise! It was closed. They had some sports competition going on and everyone was at the local stadium. Perfect we though, that’s where we shall go then. When we got there we realised the “everyone” was only the teachers, who were having some intense soccer and volleyball competition and did not seem at all too keen on buying bocaditos. We sold a few but not nearly as many as we had desired. We spent another hour or so walking around but did not manage to finish selling the whole lot.

The third day

So the next day we went out again and sold the remaining 50 bocaditos in 40 minutes. We couldn’t believe the productivity and we couldn’t really understand what had happened. We were happy though, so we decided we’d make double as many truffles and take them to the big Sunday market happening in Pisac, a touristic town about an hour away from Urubamba.

And our last day of bocaditos selling

So we did, and on Sunday before noon we were in Pisac with over 200 bocaditos. It was a full day and we loved walking around the market checking things out while at the same time selling or exchanging our truffles for some other items on sale. We did not get to sell all the cookies we had made, but it was a day well spent and also our last day of bocadito selling. As it had become a habit by now, we ended it by reflecting on the things we had learned from the experience. Funny how so many of them were things we had known on the subconscious level, but had not consciously analyzed them. Or they were things one can easily read about in books on selling, but they were all at the intellectual level until now. Translating them at the experience level made them much more real to us and much easier to use in the future for bigger and more significant projects.

Read the things we learned in a whole new post. The next one. 🙂

If you liked this post please rate it, leave a comment or share it with a friend using the buttons below.

Kekszgolyó árulás, avagy az eladás titkai

Az eladás nem volt újdonság számomra, mert az  AIESECben sokat voltam tárgyalni, hogy különböző projecteket adjunk el cégeknek. Viszont ha az utcán sétállva árulsz kekszgolyót, az nem éppen ugyanaz. Vagyis azt hittem, hogy nem.

Már fél éve utaztunk. Az eredeti tervünk az volt, hogy most megyünk haza. De valahogy ez egyikőnknek sem tetszett annyira. Már Brazíliában kezdtük mondogatni, hogy lassan elfogy a pénzünk, haza kell menni, de mintha ezt mindenki elengedte volna a füle mellett. Valahogy csak bíztunk benne, hogy majd lesz valami. A a Vipassana meditáció után eljött az idő, nem volt mese valami munka után kellett nézni, ami hoz egy kis harapnivalóra elegendő pénzt.

Sokat gondolkodtunk mi lenne a legegyszerűbb pénzkereseti lehetőség, mikor egy másik turista lány mondta, hogy ő kekszgolyókat árult Cuscóban, s 1 nap akár 80 Solest is össze lehet szedni fejenként, ha nem vagy lusta. El is kértük a receptet tőle majd én még megkérdeztem anyát milyen más kekszgolyó receptet ismer, s a kettőt összegyúrva készítettük el saját banános, karamelles kekszgolyónkat. Meg kell mondjam igen csak finom lett J És még olcsó is volt az előállítása. Szerencsére a leányzó, aki ezt árulta megmondta, hogy mennyibe kerül a legolcsóbb keksz, manjar stb, így csak az ő előírásait kellet követni.


Az első tapasztalatok

Ígyhát egyik nap lelkesen kiballagtunk az Urubambai piacra, s bevásároltunk  a kekszgolyó iparhoz. Olyan 2 órába telt, mire meggyúrtunk 50 nagyobb golyót fél kg kekszből, amit darabonként 1 Solesért szándékoztunk eladni.

Az édesség árulás azért volt jó ötlet Peruban, mert itt mindenhol gyümölcskocsonyát (jelly) avagy felvert, édesített tojásfehérjét vagy házi készítésű vizes jégkrémeket árulnak 20-50 Soles Centért.

Első uticélunk az iskola volt, ahol már több leányzó várakozott, hogy a fent említett édességeket eladja. A keksz csodáink nagyon tetszettek a gyerekeknek, azonban hamar kiderült, hogy az 1 Soles elég sok nekik, a 20 vagy 50 centhez szokott édességek után. Lelkesedésükben azonban megkérdezték, hogy jövünk e holnap is, mert gondolom, akkor kérnek több pénzt otthonról, vagy ilyesmi. Mi persze igent mondtunk, s tudtuk, hogy holnap fele ekkora golyókkal jövünk, s csak 50 centet kérünk majd értük.

Az iskola után a főtérre mentünk, ahol ismét csak csodálkozott sok rendszeres édességet vevő nénike, hogy nem 50 centért áruljuk mi is a dolgokat, úgy túnik ez itt a standard ár. Mindensetre Katyát (aki beszállt az édesség bizniszünkbe) és engem nem zavart a magasabb ár és magabiztosan árultunk tovább a téren, míg Iunia első kudarcok után sokkallta az árat, s magabiztosága visszaesett, ami azt eredményezte, hogy kb fele annyi kekszgolyót adott el, mint mi.

Lecke 1.: Ha valamit eladni készülsz magabiztosnak kell lenned az árban, s hogy az megfelel a termékednek, különben vagy nem adsz el annyit, mint tudnál, vagy féláron fogod termékeidet szétosztogatni.

Lecke 2.: Az árnál is fontosabb, ha a termékben magában legyél biztos. Hinned kell benne, hogy amit eladsz egy jó és hasznos termék. Magabiztosságod átjön miközben a termékről beszélsz, ami vagy motiválni fog másokat, hogy vegyenek, vagy eltántorítani, ha látják, hogy te magad sem hiszel abban amit eladsz. Ez magában már nyerő dolog lehet. Gondoljatok bele hányszor vettetek meg valamit, csak mert az eladó áradozott a termékről, s mint gyerek a mikulásban hittetek, hogy ez nektek kell.

Folyt köv.