The food truck business is one of the most saturated markets in the United States, so it can be difficult for newcomers to gain a foothold.
Aside from your cooking skills, you’ll have to add some rudimentary marketing skills under your belt to be noticed. The good thing is that there are many other ways you can employ to help you, and many don’t even cost you.
In this article, we will share three tips to help you dominate the food truck business:
You’re a food business, and you make good food, but so does every other food truck business that’s dominating your locality. You need to know what unique value you’re giving to your customers. This doesn’t necessarily mean creating a menu with food items that nobody else makes (though this is a step in the right direction). In creating your USP, consider the following:
Target Customer: You need to know who you’re selling to. Sometimes this comes with experience, while other times, you will know this from the start.
Competition: Not every food truck is your competition, especially if you’re an ice cream truck near a Mexican taco truck because you’re serving two different items. Keep a lookout for businesses that sell food items similar to your offerings, and think of ways to differentiate yourself.
Ultimately, thinking of these two items will lead you to determine your USP. Do not be discouraged if you can’t figure it out right away because ideas will come as long as you keep working on it. The competition should drive you to innovate and find ways to bring unique value to your customers.
As a food truck business owner, you may want to skimp on marketing and focus solely on your service. This is a good strategy that prioritizes the well-being of your customers before making a buck. However, keep in mind that businesses that do not grow will dwindle over time. If you truly want to succeed, you’ll have to develop a working marketing plan to help your food truck business grow.
You can start with the basics: print some brochures and get some calling cards out. Despite not bringing instant success, word of mouth will provide a solid backing for your other marketing efforts. Next, you will want to have an online presence so that people know of your existence even before seeing your truck in person.
Here are some ways to create an online presence for free:
Claim your business on Google My Business: If your food truck business is already on Google Maps and all that is left to do is to claim it. By claiming it and creating a business profile, you can add pictures and other important details. This not only lets more people find your food truck, but it also signals to Google that you are an active establishment, and it will likely show your business in the “near me” searches.
Create a social media presence: Social media platforms are a great way for you to reach more people. Provided that you have the patience to learn, or the right experience with social media, you’ll be able to quickly catch on and gain a following. Social media is a great way to announce promos, new menus, contests, and other gimmicks to engage existing customers and reach prospects.
Start a food blog: You don’t necessarily have to share trade secrets. You can promote your food truck business by suggesting other takes on your most popular offerings or share some bits of information and background about the recipes that you use.
Although this step in not entirely free, you should only follow this when you and your business are ready to expand.
If you feel that you’re ready to take on another food truck branch, or that you’re prepared to include online deliveries to your queue, then you should also grow your marketing tools. For example, your food blog needs to be turned into a full-blown website. You need to start thinking about improving the online rankings of your food truck and getting into local food business SEO. Fortunately, there are SEO agencies waiting to take on this challenge; you only need to find the right one.
Starting a food truck business can be a daunting process, but as long as you believe in your product and keep on progressing, you’ll find ways to adapt and overcome. By following the three tips given above, you will be able to figure out what to do next and how to grow your business in the long run.