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Grilled Cheese Truck Give Mobi

As a small business owner, particularly a food truck owner, you always have to ask yourself “do I engage with my customers the best possible way?” or “who are they, really?”

In the past 10 years, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) has taken on a huge new role in marketing departments of all business sizes.  It used to be the department where “direct marketing” was handled.  Do you remember getting a current year auto brochure when your lease was close to being due?  It basically said, “Hey, we know you’re ready to turn in your car.  Let’s put you into this current model.”  Or a competitor would buy your name and you’d get something that said, “You’d look a lot better in this competitive model” Whatever the case, the way in which you were contacted and spoken to was very basic.

CRM has evolved into complete understanding of your customers.  Who they are, how they found you, what they like about your product, their purchasing habits with you product and your competitors and so much more.  It’s not just a list of demographics or psychographics anymore.

To aid in this process, Mobile Cuisine has partnered with the GiveNetwork to promote Fighting Hunger In America.  While this campaign is designed to enable your customers to donate funds to two great organizations, Meals On Wheels Association of America and Convoy of Hope, it’s also a very unique CRM tool.  And if you register to Fighting Hunger In America, you’ll be entered to win a $500 gas card.

Many of you have repeat customers.  They are the “bread and butter” of your business, your brand ambassadors and enthusiasts.  They feel connected to you.  Do you speak to them any differently than your other clientele?  How do you engage with them?

The Fighting Hunger In America initiative allows you the unique opportunity to engage with those customers in a more meaningful way than slipping them a bottle of water or public thank you via Twitter.

Once your truck is registered, you’ll receive signage that includes a unique QR code in which your customers can use to scan and easily donate.  The CRM side of this initiative is what you do with the list of customers that you’ll receive at the close of every month.  These customers demonstrated that they’re willing to interact with your brand, share in something you believe in and deserving of special attention.  Once they donate, they will receive a customized ‘thank you’ note from your truck.  In this note, you’ll be able to personally thank them and encourage repeat donation and sales behavior.  You’ll find out who is donating on a regular basis, engage with them and reward them.

Unlike many fundraising initiatives that tie “donations” to the purchase of products, this initiative consciously engages the customer in making a donation. Most fundraising campaigns that will ultimately raise money for a worthy cause requires the donations by the retailer regardless of any action taken by their customers.  In reality, customers are passively, at best, deciding to participate by buying something that they may have already planned to purchase.  The Fighting Hunger In America initiative allows you to engage and identify your customers that elect to participate by donating, independent of a purchase.   If you sign your truck up by the end of this month, you’ll be entered to win a $500 gas card.

The objective of Fighting Hunger In America is to fund organizations that work to feed our nation’s hungry and to promote and grow citizen philanthropy – one truck at a time, one city at a time.

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Protein Sources for a Vegetarian

Each week new Meatless Monday participating restaurants and food trucks are popping up worldwide. To do our part in supporting Meatless Mondays we believe that sharing information, recipes, and news about vegetarianism and leading a more conscious life overall is beneficial for everyone, vegetarian and omnivore alike.

From large chains to fine dining, chefs and restaurateurs are discovering the many benefits Meatless Monday offers to both their patrons and their pockets. So what can Meatless Monday do for your food truck business?

• By signing onto the Meatless Monday movement, you’re joining forces with eateries nationwide! From delis in D.C. to five-star bistros in Santa Monica, this is a public health campaign that everyone can get behind. Even celebrity chefs like Mario Batali and John Fraser now have Meatless Monday specials.

• Meatless Monday is a creative way to combat an otherwise slow day in the mobile food industry. Weekly specials are a great way to increase traffic and gain new customers. Meatless Monday also lends itself to a wide variety of one-time events and promotions; get them talking about you one week and dining with you the next!

• Offering a Meatless Monday special couldn’t be easier! Simply highlight the meat-free options you already have on hand. Just like Sodexo, the world’s premier food services provider, does for its 10 million meals served every Monday. Remember- you don’t have to take meat off the menu to participate. For an exciting start to the week you can also use Monday to launch new meatless options or to highlight a local or seasonal dish.

• Meatless dishes are usually much cheaper to produce and take less time to prepare. Highlighting meat-free entrees means an increase in profits from each dish sold. Low costs also mean you can offer attractive discounts and specials without breaking the bank.

• Meatless Mondays are an easy way to show customers that you care about issues in your community. Rates of obesity and chronic preventable disease have soared in recent years. So too have concerns about the environmental impact of what we eat. Meatless Monday addresses both of these issues in an approachable way, allowing restaurants to be part of the conversation.

WHAT’S A MEATLESS MONDAY FEATURE?

There are limitless ways to bring Meatless Monday to your restaurant. But they broadly fall into two categories:

Highlight What You Have

If you already serve meatless dishes, simply highlight them as Meatless Monday options! You can gather them under one menu heading, use a little “MM” insignia next to each item, create your own Meatless Monday logo, make a Monday menu inset, or highlight Meatless Monday meals on a specials board. Ultimately, it’s just a matter of drawing attention to the delicious meat-free items you already serve.

Add Meatless Dishes

If you don’t already offer meat-free items, it’s easy to create and/or add these dishes. Half the fun of Meatless Monday is trying new, tasty meat-free fare – and this is a great opportunity for chefs and restaurateurs to get creative, experiment with different vegetables, or try new combinations of veggies, grains and beans. If you’re looking for recipes, MeatlessMonday.com is just one place where you’ll find a bounty of possibilities.

IT’S ALL ABOUT CHOICE

We encourage our restaurants, whenever possible, to offer meat-free options alongside meat dishes. Meatless Monday is a campaign of choice – it’s fundamentally about adding options, not taking them way. We want to introduce people to new, healthy foods and new ways to prepare and eat greens, grains, beans and fruits. The restaurants around the country that have had the most success with Meatless Monday offer choice to their customers.

GO FROM MENU TO MOVEMENT

When you offer Meatless Monday specials, you’re joining an ever-growing network of restaurants, organizations, schools and communities across the globe who have taken the pledge for better personal and environmental health. To tap into the power of the movement, make sure your patrons and staff know the message behind your menu!

Brief your employees on the Meatless Monday Movement – including benefits, history, and why your restaurant is participating – so they can easily answer customer questions.

ADVERTISE ONLINE

• Let the world know that you’re going meatless on Monday! Add an announcement to your restaurant’s homepage or menu section- you can even use the logos available on www.MeatlessMonday.com. If you’re featuring a full Meatless Monday menu, post a link so site visitors can get a taste of what you have to offer.

• Let them know you’re going Meatless Monday! Send an e-mail to info@MeatlessMonday.com and they’ll add you to their list of participants on site!

USE SOCIAL MEDIA

Utilizing social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter is a quick, easy way to share the movement with your favorite customers:

• Remind your followers about your Meatless Monday special on Sunday night or Monday morning.

• Reinforce your reasons for going meatless by sharing informative health and environmental articles on Monday.

• Use social media to ask for customer feedback- that way you’ll be able to share your successes and see where there’s room for improvement.

• Show your follows what they’re missing! Post pictures of your Meatless Monday entrees, smiling customers, busy cooks or your Monday night full house!

• Make your followers feel important with exclusive discounts, giveaways, meal deals and other “social media specials”.

• Take advantage of the Meatless Monday network! Send a shout-out to Meatless Monday on Facebook or Twitter so they can cross promote you.

www.Facebook.com/MeatlessMonday

www.Twitter.com/MeatlessMonday

POINT OF SALE PROMOTION

Don’t forget to advertise at your food truck! A few well-placed signs and a knowledgeable staff are all it takes to bring your Meatless Monday special to the next level:

• Place a Meatless Monday cling in your service window so passersby can see that you’re part of the movement.

• On Monday try putting specials on the menu board. Monday is your opportunity to make a positive impression that will last all week.

• Train your wait staff to ask customers if they’re celebrating Meatless Monday today. Provide them with general information sheets so they can answer any questions customers might have.

• Call attention to your Meatless Monday meal choices- add a graphic to your existing menu, or simply create a separate menu board for Monday.

Please do your part today and join the movement? Signing up is fast and easy! Mobile Cuisine Magazine looks forward to our continued sharing of Meatless Monday articles with our readers!

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