If you are a new food truck owner, one of the best ways to start building the discussion about your mobile food business is by contacting members of the local media.
This approach will allow you to practice your marketing skills and at the same time begin creating media relationships in your local community. This will help your food truck business grow.
But how do you start your food truck’s publicity efforts?
The first step is to read all of your local publications and figure out who writes about your food, restaurant and the mobile food industry. Check out the archived stories online and also look for appropriate contact information.
If you don’t see a particular writer or reporter who covers food trucks specifically, contact the managing editor or assignment editor. These editors are usually in charge of assigning stories to various reporters.
Practice Practice Practice
So what are you going to say once you get a reporter’s attention? Simple, you could just pick up the phone and introduce yourself and your business.
Explain to the editor your story and the value you can provide as a resource to that publication. You can also pitch a story pertinent to the publication’s audience. With both of these methods, it’s essential to:
Offer valuable information that relates to the local community. After all, that’s what the local publication is all about and what the editor wants to hear.
After you introduce yourself to the appropriate media contact, follow up with an e-mail or snail-mail letter. You want to remind them what you have to offer their audience.
Focus On Their Needs
After your initial contact, you want to keep in touch with your new media contact. On a monthly basis, send a note about a recent article in the publication, provide information about an upcoming food truck event or ask how you can help.
Most local media venues are tight on staff and cash so they will appreciate your efforts.
By starting with these simple steps, you may end up with an immediate interview or a writing assignment. If not, at least you will build a strong, working relationship with the local press so they know who you are and what your food truck has to offer.
Then, when their deadlines pop up and they need an expert resource for an upcoming story, you’ll be at the top of their list.
And if you are a new food truck owner, this process can teach you how to speak to the media at a low risk-level. After all, if you mess up your pitch with a small, local publication, you can learn from your mistakes and avoid them when you move on to bigger media outlets.
With this in mind, try contacting your local newspaper within the next week. It won’t cost you anything but time. Plus, you’ll increase your marketing skills, and who knows? You may end up with a media clip that builds buzz about your food truck, a new working relationship with the local press and credibility you simply can’t buy.