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food truck customer list

Customer list building should be placed at the pinnacle at your food truck marketing strategy for 2015. That is, if it already isn’t. But why you might ask?

The size and quality of your food truck’s customer list will help generate business when and where you want it.

While Twitter and Facebook are great avenues for marketing to your local community, however the lists of followers and likes do not belong to you and are regulated by both Twitter and Facebook. Who will see your post, when they will see it and what the content can consist of are only a portion of the rules placed on you by those entities.

By building a strong food truck customer list, you are in control and you can determine who, what and where you send your marketing and promotional messages.

So, you want the control, now what are some of the ways to get it?

How To Take Control Of Your Food Truck Customer List

Staff Involvement

The most important way to take control of your food truck customer list is through the experience a customer receives while at your food truck. Your truck’s staff members are the best way to collect customer contact info and encouraging sign-ups to your food truck customer list.

Why this doesn’t happen in the food truck industry still puzzles me. I think in the last 4 years of covering the industry, I’ve been asked for my email address a total of three times. And in those three cases, I’ve never once received an email from those trucks.

If you’ve tried asking in the past and received a no, you must try again but this time give your staff the training needed for success. This should include a developed script that can be easily memorized and delivered.

Passive Acquisition

The best way to build your customer list is through direct customer interaction, but it can also be done passively. Think about the menus and flyers you pass out at every stop.

You can put a bowl in your service window to collect business cards (with a “enter to win a gift certificate offer”). You can also include on your order slips to encourage email signups but be sure to give instructions on how to join.

Online Tips

As far as filling up your food truck customer list online, you need to have a signup on your website. Not only on the home page, but make sure the sign up form is available on all of your site’s pages. It should be easy and even consider offering a gift (discount, ebook, etc..) for signing up.

Since most food trucks use Facebook to communicate with their customers, your food truck’s Facebook page is another good spot is to encourage signups. Many email service providers (Constant Contact, Aweber, Mail Chimp, etc…) provide easy to install tools to do this.

Fundraisers & Charity Events

Food trucks typically participate in many neighborhood, community and charity events. In these situations, you are likely being exposed to customers who are experiencing your truck for the first time.

Give them a compelling reason to join your email list and many will. Give them a bounce back or a free drink for signing up. Promise them a free birthday meal. A great plan can quickly fill your food truck customer list…which should be your goal.

Building your food truck customer list should become a consistent part of your food truck’s marketing plan. Your customers are the backbone of your food truck business. Explain to your staff about the lifetime value of a customer. Show them the importance of just one extra visit per month can mean to the bottom line.

Do you have any additional tips for building a food truck customer list? If so, please don’t hesitate to share your thoughts in the comment section, Tweet us or share them on our Facebook page.

my little pony burger

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - The Unwanted Animal Kitchen, founded in 2011 as part of a West Amsterdam urban art project, is a food truck that serves foods made from a variety of non-traditional meats- including goose, meerkat, deer, crow, and even horse.

The idea for the kitchen initially centered around geese. Since 2005, Amsterdam’s Schipol Airport has been fighting to protect its aircraft from the large birds, which is why thousands of them are killed by licensed hunters each year. The entrepreneurs behind the kitchen decided that instead of watching the animals go to waste, they would establish relationships with the hunters and source the geese for their menus. From this meat, the kitchen has been able to re-create the traditional Dutch croquette and even make tasty soups and other fried delicacies.

Perhaps what has garnered more attention for the small food truck is the “My Little Pony Burger,’ which is made from retired racehorse and pony meat.

Find the entire article at psfk.com <here>

milwaukee dudzik

MILWAUKEE, WI - Milwaukee Alderman Joe Dudzik says he wants to ban food trucks in his district. It’s a proposal the Public Safety Committee approved Thursday, January 29th.

Food trucks are now banned in Milwaukee’s 11th Aldermanic District.

The law goes line-by-line, banning trucks on every major street and side street in the district.

It bans selling anything from parked vehicles, but the law targets food trucks.

Dudzik says the problem is traffic in intersections.

“You put a panel truck and a couple people pulling over to have a hamburger or hot dog — whatever they want, sushi, became a real problem,” Dudzik said.

Dudzik says food trucks might still be allowed with special permission. They would have to contact the alderman to change the ordinance to allow specific locations.

Find the original article at fox6now.com <here>

food truck financials

Food truck vendors tend to excel in the areas of cooking, menu creativity, and customer interaction. But many don’t have to firm grasp of the business side of the food truck industry. Unfortunately, this lack of knowledge has led to the failure of some great concepts.

You probably already know that it doesn’t take long for your financials to spiral out of control. Today I’ll provide some pointers to help keep your food truck financials from losing control.

Keep Control Of You Food Truck Financials

Know the numbers

If the only thing you understand about food truck finances is how much money you have at the end of the month, how will you know what the problem is? Understand concepts like profit margins and check averages and keep track of these calculations on a weekly or at the most, monthly schedule.

Know what’s most profitable

Just because a menu item is more expensive than another doesn’t mean that it returns a higher profit. Determine which menu items make you the most money. With this data, you can train your service window staff them to your customers.

Create combo deals

Combo meals are popular for a reason. They allow customers to get more for their money, stay within their budgets, and simplify the ordering process. And food truck owners get a more consistent profit stream as well as providing a service that attracts repeat business you’re your happy customers.

Consider catering

Catering from food trucks has quickly become one of the most popular catering trends across the country. Although catering does present food truck owners some challenges, it’s a high margin service that food trucks are already equipped to provide.

Create reports

It’s essential to create daily or weekly reports just to reconcile your cash drawer. These reports can explain which menu items are you big sellers and what stops give your truck the most sales. Reports will also show you sales trends that can allow you to tweak your menu to maximize profitability.

Protect against theft

Employee theft is significantly higher in the food service industry due to the accessibility of cash and high quality food products. Establishing systems for inventory management and cash accounting can cut down on the chances of being stolen from by your food truck staff members.

I’m not sure I’ve met a vendor who started a food truck business because they excelled at accounting. But at the same time, understanding the basic accounting concepts of food truck profitability and cost controls can help to determine if your food truck enjoys a long and profitable run, or shuts its service window after one season.

Do you have any additional tips for new and existing food truck vendors to help them make it in this industry? If so, please feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section below, Tweet us or share them on our Facebook page.