One universal food truck goal is to sell the business’s menu and services. This is usually best done when you publicize your food truck to your target audience, and offering something that solves a problem or that they can’t find somewhere else.
The promotion of your food truck requires personal interaction with potential customers to create interest in your mobile food business. Since potential customers include current customers that may become repeat visitors, promotion can happen inside as well as outside of the truck. Because of that we’ve compiled this list of 10 easy ways to promote and publicize your food truck.
10 Ways To Publicize Your Food Truck
What’s the best way to publicize your food truck? How can you advertise your mobile food business and get your name in front of potential customers when money is tight or you’re just starting up? How can you get the word out about your business in the most affordable way? Try some of these tactics to publicize your food truck business.
Contact local organizations
Ask the chamber of commerce or the convention center for a list of contact information for organizations, such as service organizations, unions, political organizations, etc. Call them and tell them about your truck. Offer to cater their meetings and parties.
Make friends with the right people
Try to be on good terms with people who come in contact with tourists or big groups. Examples are hotel staff, concierge services, event coordinators at hotels or convention centers, tour guides, gas station attendants, car rental employees, etc.
Train employees in personal selling
Any employee of your food truck can get involved with personal selling. Train your service window staff members as well as all of your on-board truck staff to engage in personal selling outside of the truck. Provide them with business cards or promotional materials, which they can distribute to prospective customers.
Pitch to local companies.
You can speak personally with the human resources managers or appropriate personnel at any company that is in your local area to see if they are interested in setting up a truck stop on their property or having you cater a meeting or event.
Follow up personally with customers
You can do this both inside and outside of the food truck. After customers finish their meal, it is never a bad idea for the owner or truck manager to speak with them, thanking them and asking if they were satisfied with everything. You can also follow up on customer service issues. For example, if customers fill out a comment card and leave negative comments, you could call them to apologize for their negative experience and offer to make up for it next time.
Vend at local events
Personally attend farmers markets, local arts or culinary festivals where you can vend or hand out samples. Talk to the event goers and tell them why they should try out your food truck. Even if you do not create any immediate sales, you will create awareness and get your truck’s name out there.
Be friendly, not pushy
Whenever you are talking to a prospective customer, show excitement about what you have to offer, but be easy-going. If they are not very receptive of your pitch, do not irritate them further.
Use good body language
Any time you are in public, you should represent your mobile food business with your image. One way to do this is to use good body language. Make eye contact, smile and do not cross your arms. If you are talking to someone on the phone, smile while you are doing it, because the smile will come through in your voice.
Get involved with the community
The more activities you are personally involved with, the more people you will meet. Almost every person you meet is a new potential customer.
Hand out flyers, menus or coupons
People are more receptive to promotional materials that come directly from a vendor. Instead of putting flyers on cars or stuffing them in mailboxes, try handing them out in person.
The Bottom Line
You may not have wads of cash to spend on marketing in the early stages of your food truck startup, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t effective ways to get your brand out there. Before the Internet, small businesses only had a few ways to market their products cheaply, through methods like printing out fliers or sponsoring little local events. Now there are all kinds of opportunities out there. You just need to know where to look. Use these easy ways to publicize your food truck that won’t cost you a ton of money.