While the mobile food industry is booming, an exceptional amount of them fail as soon as they’ve started up. It’s almost unsettling to watch and, as an increasing amount of food carts, hot dog vans and ice cream trucks are popping up everywhere, an almost equal amount bites the dust every year.
It’s not all due to local legislation and a challenging market, though, and the ones who manage to stay afloat for more than a couple of years have actually been able to pinpoint their source of success – so that you can find yours as well.
Here is how you can keep your portable cuisine business afloat, and continue to feed your community without all the hiccups.
Don’t be self-obsessed
Running a gourmet food truck or mobile cafe is just like running a stationary one – only with the obvious difference of having wheels instead of brick and mortar. Those in charge of managing a restaurant or cafe are often passionate about what they serve and have their own set of standards, which is a good thing, but quite likely to get in your way when you should be listening to the customers.
Business owners can quickly get self-obsessed and caught up in their own standards, refusing to listen to their customers and unable to broaden their vision. It means that the once so successful food truck is decreasing in relevance; the customers no longer feel like it meets their needs, so they move on to something else.
Be open to other people’s opinion, listen to the community you’re in, and incorporate their values into your business vision. It’s the only way to keep them hungry for more, and your best safeguard against being swallowed whole by competitors who take the time to listen. Check out Mobile-Cuisine, first of all, and read up on more ways to succeed in the industry.
Build an identity
The concept of having a solid identity is never as important as when you’re running a mobile food business. Where business owners should have been stubborn about their identity and open-minded enough to listen to the market, many of them have gone ahead and done the opposite.
The food vans that fail are often constrained with regards to vision and wishy-washy in terms of identity, leaving their customers feeling uncared for and unable to connect with the brand. This is bad news for any business; to a mobile food business, it’s often detrimental – eliminating the need for your services and seeing another, more relevant, food truck popping up in your place.
The success of your business depends on your ability to develop an identity and stick to it. You can have a look at Kickstart My Coffee Vans for more great advice on getting started, no matter what kind of cuisine or service your mobile business is dishing up.
Failing to plan sufficiently before opening your mobile kitchen is a sure way to fail permanently. Even though the idea of starting a business like this seems straightforward enough, to begin with, the number of scrapped food trucks proves how important it is not to underestimate the amount of work – as well as how challenging the market can be.