You’ve been waiting for this: your food truck is finally ready to go! You can’t wait to get out and start wowing your local food scene with all the delicious dishes you’ve created. You can just see yourself, cooking up a storm, leaving customers stuffed and satisfied, parked right by… what?
Where are you actually going to park your truck, now that you think of it? Where can you go to drum up the business you need to make your food truck successful?
Read on for some ideas on how to find the right places to get your business booming.
Find Other Food Trucks
One of the best ways to get an idea of where you can park your truck is by finding other food trucks in the area. See if your city, county, or state has a food truck association where you can get advice from other owners.
You could even look up to see where existing food trucks are parking to get ideas. Just be sure that you don’t encroach too much on their territory, or steal their business. That’s one sure way to earn the resentment of veteran food truck owners in your area.
Consider parking in popular spots on alternating days when other food trucks are at different locations. This will keep both fellow food truck owners and potential customers happy: you won’t be competing with another food truck for business, and you’ll be offering something new on days when customers might not have many choices.
Consider Community Events
The most popular places for food trucks are often at community events, like carnivals, fairs, festivals, bazaars, and markets. These typically draw larger crowds than you would find organically, and setting up at one can broaden your customer base. If people really like the food you’re serving, they will try to find you at places you park in the future.
Contact your city or county’s chamber of commerce to find out what upcoming events could be a fit for your truck. Search on Facebook for events coming up near you, and check out the official tourism website for your city. You might even consider signing up for current events newsletters serving your area.
Be sure to find out what requirements there might be for you to show up at these events: you may have to register or pay a vendor fee to be included, rather than just showing up and setting up.
Book Private Parties
Another stream of revenue you can pursue for your food truck business is catering for private events. Catering like this can often get you returning customers who will keep coming back when they need another event catered.
See what businesses in your area would be interested in booking your truck for corporate events. Attend networking events or business expos to get an idea of what businesses present in your area might be interested in your services. You could also contact nonprofits in your area to pitch your food truck, as many fundraisers are food-based.
Another type of event where food trucks are gaining traction is at weddings. Having a food truck is a fun and unique way for guests to celebrate and lots of couples are embracing the trend!
Try taking out an advertisement in your local wedding magazine. Talk to wedding venues about how to become one of their preferred catering vendors.
Once you feel out the local wedding scene, you might decide it’s worth diving deeper; you might even want to see about attending wedding expos, alongside other caterers. That way you can let your food speak for itself by offering samples. People will be much more likely to book your truck for a large event if they’ve experienced how delicious your food is.
Get Your Name Out There
If you want to start building a customer base, you need to make it easy for customers to find you. Make yourself a Facebook page and post your daily locations and specials. Share your spot of the day on your Instagram story each morning when you move somewhere different.
Another important part of getting and retaining customers is building brand recognition. This means that when people see your truck it is instantly recognizable to them, and they associate your food with it.
Make sure you have a logo that clearly identifies you, and get it wrapped on your truck. Use it on all your social media accounts and your website if you have one. That way, customers will be able to recognize you in person when they find you online, and vice versa.
Break Into Your Local Food Truck Scene
So get out there! Start doing your research, and don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions. Talk to other local food truck or business owners, research events in your area, get your catering game in gear, and market your truck like nobody’s business.
If you haven’t got a food truck yet, or are looking to upgrade that old clunker you’ve been operating from, contact us. We can help you design the perfect truck, whatever your food truck business looks like.