Food truck owners learned the importance of social media quickly. Unfortunately, many still don’t understand who their online customers are. Americans have a half empty/half full thing going when it comes to food truck owners using social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook.

They think more highly of mobile food businesses that are active within social media, even when they realize that increasing profit is the primary driver of these efforts, according to a survey by Allstate and the National Journal.

For vendors this survey provides an in-depth profile of their online customers.

Who Are Your Online Customers?

To begin with, your food truck’s online customers are more community and politically active than non-online customers. Their purchase decisions are very dependent on the feedback they receive from their online circles.

As popular as social media has become for food truck owners, it’s still not particularly trusted. Americans are far more likely to believe what gets reported through TV and radio, newspapers and other traditional media. (For example, 71 percent of survey participants place trust in newspapers, compared with just 30 percent who do the same for social media sites.)

“The explosion of available information and inter-connectivity through social media is beyond dispute,” says Joan Walker, Allstate executive vice president. “The greater question is whether these amazing new tools can also help make more trustworthy.”

This poll shows that the jury is still out. It suggests strongly that in social media there is much potential for creating more accessibility, while demanding more authenticity to be successful.

What you should know about your food truck online customers:

  • 64% of American adults are active on social media.
  • 69% of social media users have volunteered for a community organization, compared with 49% of non-social media users.
  • 89% of social media users have donated money to a charitable cause, compared with 81% of non-social media users.
  • 32% of social media users have attended a campaign rally, compared with 22% of non-social media users.
  •  79% of social media users are likely to consult with others about buying a product or service, compared with 60% of non-social media users.
  • 64% of social media users have changed their minds about a product or service due to others’ opinions, compared with 47% of non-social media users.
  • 59% of social media users say that a company’s social media activity makes the company appear “accessible and responsive.”
  • 49% of social media users say companies that are active in social media are more “transparent and open.”
  • 64% of social media users want companies to increase their use of social media for customer service purposes.
  • 73% feel that major corporations are active on social media to more easily advertise, collect customer data, increase profits and gain a competitive edge.

RELATED: How To Develop Your Food Truck Social Media Voice

The Bottom Line

This data will give you important insight in how to market your food truck’s menu and brand to the local community that seeks you out and follows your work on social media.

Do your food truck online customers differ from the results of this survey? Share your thoughts on this topic in the comment section or on social media. Facebook | Twitter