I'm thinking about starting a food truck, servicing 2-3 counties mostly during events. Where I live the population is very spread-out, so my strategy will be regularly getting into events with crowds of 800+ instead of a permanent spot.
I'm studying The Food Truck Handbook plus a few other resources (mobile-cuisine.com). While online marketing is well covered, direct offline marketing isn't talked about. I have a few questions for those who have managed mobile cuisine in the past:
- How much time do you spend every day (or is it once or twice a month) planning out where you'll go next and making calls to event managers?
- How do you find smaller less publicly announced events, like paintball tournaments or car dealership events? Do you buy a few newspapers every day or just check a bunch of websites?
- Do you ever miss out on events because you didn't hear about them in time?
- What makes you think an event will be good for business? How do you decide to go to Event A when Event B is happening at the same time across town?
- When you find an event that could be profitable and the event manager hadn't yet considered a food truck, what do you say to get them interested and how do you work out compensation?
- Is it worth it to cold call a factory to get their lunch break schedules and ask if they want me to stop by from time to time?
- At a bare minimum, how long does it take to get the truck ready to move to a new location? Is it realistic to stop by 5 or 6 places an evening, or does getting the truck rolling take too long? Just put everything away, turn everything off, wipe everything down, and start the engine?