Business cycles are the normal fluctuations (economic ups and downs) of the output of an economy. Every industry grows over time, but not at a steady rate. Because food trucks are consumer-focused companies, they experience both good times and bad times. With that said, some food trucks seem to consistently outperform the competition regardless of economic conditions.
Understanding what successful food do well, regardless of economic conditions usually follow three simple principles:
- Recognize that you don’t control external economics. Successful food trucks outperform their competitors no matter the changes in the economy.
- Develop a clear understanding of who their customers are. Regardless of the economic climate, successful food trucks know the customers they serve and what those customers want.
- React to economic changes. Enable your food truck management team to act responsively as customers adapt to changes in their lives. The management team sets the direction and the staff converts this direction into sales.
To survive and thrive both economic ups and downs, there are several things vendors can do to help keep their food truck on course.
5 Ways To Properly React To Economic Ups and Downs
Never stop looking for ways to implement change to your mobile food business, especially during tough times. When things get tough, weak competitors will close, and this is when creative vendors make their moves. Get closer to your customers to offer them menu items and services that best serve their needs.
Marketing is often the first budget that gets cut during an economic downturn, but it should be the last. Cutting your marketing and sales is like turning off your generator in the middle of a busy lunch rush. Let your competitors cut their marketing budgets and capitalize on their fear.
Do More With Less
Food truck owners should become experts at survival tactics. If you have to lay off staff members, then keep the best, train them more, and pay them more to do more. The customer experience cannot suffer because the owner has fewer resources.
Maximize The Good Times
When the good times come, use those opportunities to prepare for the long haul and focus on growing your mobile food business. Be strategic and proactive and use the wave to look for ways to reduce expenses and increase profit margins. Keep your eye a minimum of 60 days ahead strategically. This will allow you to run your food truck proactively instead of being reactive when unseen events pop up.
Be Honest With Your Staff
Never lie to your employees, especially when times are difficult. Communicate the state of your food truck empire on a regular basis. When kept in the loop and included in the process of implementing change during down times, employees become understanding and helpful. In the same respect, when things are good, reward them. Then they’ll stand by you and work extra hard through any economic fluctuations.
The Bottom Line
Economic cycles can be erratic and impossible to foresee. Economic ups and downs may not be obvious until months after it happens, so it’s important to understand how business cycles can affect your mobile food business. Successful food truck vendors understand that whether the economy is good or bad, it takes every effort, managerial capability, and leadership to achieve an edge over the competition.