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Learn A Lesson Or Two From Food Trucks

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Learn A Lesson Or Two From Food Trucks
I love food trucks!

And I don’t know what I like more about them, is it the great food that comes from them or is it the way they do business?  Both are spectacular.   It’s not just the way they can do business, but the way they are able to adapt so easily and change up the way they do business.  I think it’s a concept and idea that most work from home businesses can learn from.

Why am I talking about food trucks?

So this morning as I’m checking my Twitter feed I see that The Grilled Cheeserie will be close to my house serving lunch this afternoon.  That instantly got my attention!  I love this truck.  May I just say ymmy?  They use local and seasonal products to make gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches.  These are not the kind of grilled cheese I had growing up.  These are “fancy” grilled cheese packed with taste.  Yes, they are yummy!

As I headed over to find The Grilled Cheeserie for lunch, I started thinking again about how cool the entire food truck industry is.  Is it a fad? They’ve been around Nashville for a few years and continue to go strong.  It is even rumored that Disney is going to include food trucks in the new Disney Springs area.  They certainly seem to have some sticking power.foodtruck22

Much like home based businesses and other small businesses, I believe food trucks have numerous business applications going for them that corporate America and large businesses do not have.  I’ll point out a few…

Did you see how I came about eating at The Grilled Cheeserie today?  They tweeted where they would be.  Most food trucks communicate with their following through social media in a much different way than big corporations.  They interact with their fans, they post yummy pictures of their amazing food.  Their use of social media is genius and much can be learned by studying them.  When they tweet their location, it’s creating a sense of urgency and a “you don’t want to miss this” feeling.  Because of their interaction with their followers, they create fans – who retweet and check-in and become a marketing team for them.

They use innovative technology.  I have “Square Wallet” on my iPhone.  Before I walked up to place my order, I clicked on their icon on my phone, causing my picture to show up on their iPad.  They entered my order and the total displayed on my phone.  I approved the total and the order was placed… no exchanging money or even needing to run my debit card.  They embrace technology that large companies are often leery of.  I still do not get why all businesses do not use this concept. They make doing business with them “cool” and “hip.”

They charge a fair price.  Without a doubt, their overhead is lower than a brick and mortar location.  But they would cheat themselves out of a lot of revenue if they thought “I have half the overhead so I am going to charge half the price.”  They charge a fair price.  In your business, be sure you understand that just because you have a low overhead that you still need to charge a fair price.  Do not cheat yourself out of income nor undervalue the services you provide.

They easily adapt.  If a bacon, turkey & avocado grilled cheese is not selling well, they are able to remove it from the menu the next day.  If a certain location does not produce many customers, they are able to move to a new location.  If a certain venue brings about a high volume of customers, they know to be a part of that venue again.  Big businesses are not able to do this.  With home based businesses, we have that same kind of flexibility and must quickly adapt for success.



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They produce great quality products.  The food from food trucks around Nashville is simply delicious – or at least it is at the ones I frequent.  Food is hot, fresh and yummy!  They use better ingredients, fresh ingredients and prepare the food on a daily basis – that’s better than you get a most restaurants.  That’s the way we have to be with our home based business.  We have to make certain that our products & services are of top quality.  We have to offer services that will have that “gourmet” effect and will let our customers easily see a difference.

They know their audience.  Reading back through tweets from various trucks, it’s easy to see that some of the trucks know their audience and use this incredibly to their advantage.  Knowing your audience is vital for success.  In over simplistic terms – If you have an audience of vegetarian customers, it does not bode well to blog about the perfect marinade for  20 ounce rib eyes.  If you have stuffy academic types, you don’t want to use the word “y’all” in your tweets.  Knowing your audience is key.

I had a great lunch today thanks to one tweet that I read in my twitter feed.  Social media works, having an outstanding product works, being adaptable works, charging a fair price works.

And now I’m craving dinner…

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Discussion

  1. Chuco Townsend  February 27, 2014

    Thanks for sharing.
    The “Food Trucks” of today are not the roach coaches of yesteryear, although the lingeting fog of that stigma does still continue to this day in some areas. However, most people who decide to visit s food truck either out of curiosity or peer pressure, tend to find themselves pleasantly surprised with what they receive. Excellent food ad a good value, sold hand to hand from the person who cooked it. Not an experience you get at many restaurants).
    Social media is huge for the food truck industry. It always amazes me when I come across trucks who don’t use it, as they are missing out on tremendous opportunities. Crom customer service to community building and management, social media offers food trucks an amazing advantage for those who use it well.

    Mahalo for a great write up.

    (reply)
    • Bonnie Cribbs  February 28, 2014

      I am definitely a fan of food trucks! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and the way you help them too :)

      (reply)

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