National Bakery Day promises to lift the independent retail bakery universe to new heights.
There has never been a more important campaign for independent retail bakeries across the country to rally around than National Bakery Day, which this year arrives on Friday, Sept. 14.

This unique promotional event presents local bakeries the chance to shine and sparkle and, better yet, profit from the experience. So, you may ask, what should I do to take full advantage of this enormous opportunity?

It’s the 100th anniversary of the Retail Bakers Association, and the first step to achieving success is to understand that you are not alone. Reach out to the RBA ( and get involved.

“Every time people support a local business, that money gets reinvested into their community,” says Deluxe’s chief brand and communications officer Amanda Brinkman. “Small businesses have such an enormous role in making each community across America special. One thing small business owners can do to keep building momentum around this movement is to support each other. By working together to share experience and ideas, individual owners can add value to their businesses, as well as the local economy as a whole.”

Now is the time to start planning for National Bakery Day promotion.

There are tens of thousands of retail bakeries in the United States, ranging from donut shops to artisan bread stores to patisseries and cake shops. This is an exciting industry, and the consumer world has never been more fascinated with local food and supporting the small business economy. So start planning now.

By joining RBA in a Retail Level 1, 2 or 3 membership category, your bakery will receive a free marketing kit for National Bakery Day. The kit will be sent to your bakery and will include National Bakery Day marketing materials for you to use, as well as a how to guide. These kits included a box label, window decals, posters, table tents, and counter stands. The professionally designed artwork features fun slogans such as “Keep Your Dough Local.”

LTOs and other marketing ideas

For bakeries in search of creative ideas for promoting National Bakery Day this year, one of the most effective marketing tools is the limited-time offer (LTO).

LTOs work by energizing your customer base to act now. They typically boost immediate sales by 10% or more and bring your brand to the forefront. The key is making a lasting impression that brings customers back for more.

Last year on National Bakery Day, Flour Bakery + Cafe sold special mini chocolate cupcakes with rainbow sprinkles, with proceeds going to Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign.
Think about creating a limited-edition, one-time-only pastry or donut or bread that you make exclusively for National Bakery Day.

Nationally recognized blogger Mike Wallagher shares five solid tips for successful LTOs. He writes that 78% of millennials would rather spend money on experiences than physical products, so keep that in mind.

  1. Draw attention to new experiences
  2. Define your offer dates
  3. Use a benefit-based call-to-action
  4. Keep your offer simple and brief
  5. Be honest

Given that we are fully immersed in the “experience economy,” another great idea for National Bakery Day is inviting customers into your bakery for a special demonstration, or even holding a raffle during National Bakery Day for the chance for one lucky customer to spend the day with you inside your retail store. Sound far-fetched? Not in the slightest.

Creative Cakes in Tinley Park, Illinois held a golden ticket promotion on National Bakery Day last year.
Many consumers would love to get a behind-the-scenes look inside your operation. Talk about creating a unique experience for a child or a parent who is an aspiring baker. If this weren’t the case, millions of people would not be watching “The Best Baker in America” series on The Food Network, TLC’s hit series Cake Boss, or “The Greatest British Bake Off.”

“People want to know: What are your habits?” explains Penny Hardman, associate content director for Sullivan Higdon & Sink, a Kansas-based marketing and advertising agency. “A baker’s day is so different than ours. That’s what makes it so interesting.”

Supporting Words from National Bakery Day Sponsors

Barry Callebaut

“Crafted in one of Belgium’s oldest cocoa roasteries and made from sustainable cocoa beans, Callebaut’s Finest Belgian Chocolate is here for you. Since 1911, Callebaut’s mission has been to bring great tasting chocolate and support chefs in creating wonderful chocolate delights. We strive to provide our customers a platform to share their creativity, passion and hard work. This is about heroes like you: chefs who work hard every day doing what they love. As part of our commitment to promote our customers, we are happy to renew our sponsorship of National Bakery Day. We look forward to celebrating with you!”

Van Leer

“Van Leer Chocolate is proud to be a sponsor of National Bakery Day 2018! As a brand, we are always looking for ways to support locally owned bakeries and encourage the livelihood of small businesses. What better way to celebrate the success of independent bakeries than by enjoying their signature creations, unique tastes and contributions to their local communities. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with Retail Bakers of America to recognize our independent bakeries across the U.S. on September 14th and we look forward to seeing how our local bakeries celebrate!”


“For the past 2600 years—since bread-baking first began in Ancient Greece—baking has been about two things: tradition and innovation. Baked goods figure in so many aspects of our culture, from family celebrations to religious rituals to everyday sustenance, it’s no wonder baking seems an essential part of life. One taste can transport us back to childhood memories, while another excites our awareness of delicious new possibilities. Corbion is proud to support the bakers of the world, and the industry whose heritage is so tied up with our own. Here’s to a future filled with more remembrance and discovery.”

Ardent Mills

“The art of baking dates back countless generations, and true bread enthusiasts have counted on quality flours to create their best ideas. Ardent Mills has the most expansive portfolio of organic and traditional flours, whole grains, ancient grains, and bakery mixes in the industry. Along with or new Annex business, our vision is to be your trusted partner in delivering innovative, nutritious, grain based solutions to customers, consumers and communities. Backed by a coast-to-coast network of more than 40 community mills, an artisan bakery and Innovation Center; we provide unrivaled technical support, food safety solutions, risk management and strong grower relationships to deliver what’s next in grain innovation.”

General Mills

“General Mills is proud to be a sponsor of the 2018 National Bakery Day. Since our beginnings as a flour mill over 150 years ago, bakeries and bakers have been part of the lifeblood of our company. The tradition continues today, with many of the finest bakeries in America using General Mills flours, Pillsbury mixes and a variety of our other products. We join with all these customers and other bakeries in celebrating their day, National Bakery Day 2018.”

Flavor Right

“Flavor Right is so excited to be a part of National Bakery Day again this year! Retail Bakeries are responsible for making life’s most important celebrations extra-special and they deserve a day where we all celebrate and support them! It is so much fun to be a part of an industry where the #1 goal is to make people smile, whether that’s creating a little boy’s 5th birthday cake or putting the final touches on a perfect wedding day.”

Dawn Foods

“As a global bakery manufacturer and ingredients supplier, we are proud to support National Bakery Day and celebrate the hard-working bakers who play such an important role in so many of life’s sweet moments. Dawn Foods has spent nearly a century helping our bakery partners grow their business by delivering the innovative thinking, products and bakery expertise that they need to succeed, and we take pride in being their trusted partner and helping make their bakeries a success.”