Vegetarians come from all walks of life, all around the world. They’re highly educated, aware about animal rights and environmental issues, and passionate about their vegetarian lifestyle and the brands that cater to them. The vegetarian market segment is huge. There are about 18 million vegetarians in the U.S. and this number continues to grow. The good news for food truck vendors, vegetarians are less price-sensitive than the general population.
Why Market Your Food Truck To Vegetarians
To better understand vegetarianism, we’ll define the various levels of vegetarianism.
- Vegans eat no animal products at all, including eggs, dairy and honey.
- Lacto-ovos eat no meat (fish and poultry included) but do eat eggs and dairy.
- Pescatarians, eat no meat except for fish.
- Flexitarians, are concerned with healthy eating, have several meatless meals per week.
- 20 – 25 percent of the population describes itself as “vegetarian” and eats four or more meatless meals per week.
- More likely to be female (62 percent female, 38 percent male)
- Average age is 47.
- Less likely than the total population to be married (49 percent vs. 61 percent)
- Likely than the total population to have at least one child under the age of 19 living at home.
The good news is there are a lot of vegetarians. The better news is if your vegetarian menu items appeal to them, these meatless eaters will spread the word about your food truck. Vegans and vegetarians are very loyal customers. As soon as a vegetarian food truck hits the road, they tend to jump on social media and spread the word.
Reaching The Vegetarian Market
Vegetarians are very active online. They’re often online researching various vegetarian products and dining options. This means the Internet is a good way to reach this market.
The best way to reach a loyal vegetarian is by targeting vegans. Most vendors make the smart move of catering to all vegetarians and interested people by making sure that their menus and messages are vegan-friendly. If you have a vegan-friendly menu, consider applying for certification so vegetarians feel confident buying from your truck. You can learn about the Certified Vegan Logo from Vegan Action [here].
Your food truck marketing should hit on these vegetarian concerns:
Be sure to stress your menu’s benefits as they pertain to these three concerns, even when you think they may be obvious. Use buzzwords and phrases on your menu that include fair trade, vegan, vegan-certified, and organic.
Avoid vague words like healthy, which can mean anything or nothing. Even the term vegetarian-friendly can be too vague. The key when targeting the vegetarian market is that you message needs to be authentic. Vegetarians tend to question marketing. One mistake to avoid is to create marketing materials that are too commercial, or too mainstream. If you’re not sure how to speak vegetarians’ language, we suggest hiring a green marketing firm to help you build your message and menu descriptions.
RELATED: Meatless Mondays And Your Food Truck
The Bottom Line
Non-meat eaters are fiercely loyal to the brands that address their concerns. Show a vegetarian how your food truck is compassionate to animals and environmentally correct, and you’ll have a customer for life.