A plate full of social media: How Food trucks leverage the medium…
Social media marketing has been an important part of food trucks’ marketing blueprints – mainly to create awareness around their upcoming locations, new trendy cuisines, and keeping up with the digital wave.
“I may not do everything great in my life, but I’m good at this”, said Carl Casper as the Head chef in the movie Chef. While the hero was the Food Truck which takes Carl away from the mayhem of his career towards a dream sojourn of creating delectable dishes, the social media marketing push by his son, Percy, was one of the secret sauces for his success and a key highlight of the film.
‘The Chef Show’ on Netflix, based on a similar theme also brought to light the relevance of content marketing to help small businesses reach consumers and expand with relevant engagement in a short period.
Food trucks have been around the world since the 1800s and it’s quite prevalent in western countries with India racing ahead in embracing the concept. According to reports, the mobile kitchen or the food trucks’ businesses in India are increasing at 8.4% y-o-y. We take a look at the social media marketing trends and tactics used by popular food trucks and how their communication is as delectable as the sumptuous dishes served.
Food Trucks Social Media Marketing
Reportedly, Food Trucks in India started back in the 1970s in Delhi. Initially, the food vans approached traditional marketing tools such as word-of-mouth. However, with the digital evolution, the fraternity started leveraging social media for communications and engagement in varied ways.
While premium food trucks like Lalit India and Marriott Bonvoy on Wheels have dedicated social media Instagram pages to reach out to the audience, local and prominent vendors in Bangalore, Pune, Delhi, Chandigarh, and Chennai are not far behind with interesting social profiles. Here’s taking you through some of the top social media tactics deployed by food trucks in India.
Also read: Inside: The role of recipes & comfort food in MasterChow Social Media Strategy
Branding: Logo & Bright Hues
A prominent element of food trucks is their logo, graphics, and fonts in line with their personality. These are extended to their social media branding as well, integrating their online and offline presence.
Visual Appeal Of Food Content
According to data by Digimind, in 2019, Food lovers consumed 4 times more content than the average Instagram user. Instagram has also been an important source to convert leads for up-and-coming food brands – with many restaurants using the platform to geo-target their ads.
Food trucks too have been leveraging the importance of food content on the platforms, by creating delectable content around the dishes they offer.
Storytelling: Personal Stories & BTS
To give a food truck an elevated sense of authenticity as well as connecting with the audience on a more personal level, behind-the-scenes of purchasing raw food items and bon voyages has been a common tactic used by food truck brands. A lot of times, some food trucks like Bar Bank give a personal touch and position their food truck as a place for happy, family times, building better connect with the consumers.
Taking A Vernacular Route
A simple Google Search reveals the number of users in ‘Bharat’ consuming internet and social media in their preferred language. The statistics are well leveraged by food brands who create content in regional languages, fine-tuned for the preference of their audience.
Topicals & Memes
To consistently stay in the minds of the foodies, many food trucks bring topical posts capped with memes to stay relevant. These memes leverage humor with witty wordplays to engage the audience.
Keeping the consumers notified about new offers, discounts, special dishes on the menu through social media platforms has been a consistent part of food trucks’ social media strategy. Much of their content focusses on offers and discounts for special cuisines and preparations.
As restaurants on wheels, food trucks send out regular updates on their upcoming locations, date, and time with food images help to build excitement and drive more footfalls.
Many food truck brands create events and promote them through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Further, gauging the customer likes or dislikes through in-person interactions or social media tactics like poll posts, they are seen fine tuning their offerings and services.
Content Marketing & Collaboration
Another social media tactic utilized by Food Trucks is influencer marketing. The influencer collaborations help to amplify the reach and engagement for the brands. Also, many chefs and celebrities that visit as customers, organically act as influencers and are well leveraged by food truck brands.
The brands also share short, snackable videos with CTAs that often redirect the consumers to their official websites/pages. These 5-10 second videos are often feature quality visuals of their best dishes and overall offerings. These stories capped with medium to long captions help narrate the tale of the preparations while redirecting customers to websites or menu cards with appropriate CTAs
Further, these brands also initiate engagement posts like contests and quizzes. This is done to introduce cuisines, notify the audience about important dates, and redirect towards bookings and reservations.
Many Food trucks’ social media strategies involve ‘Did-you-know’ type posts with trivia for knowledge-sharing and engagement.
Promotions At Events
One of the major marketing trends for food trucks has been on-ground visibility by collaborating with colleges during fests, presence in flea markets, et al. As part of the extended offerings, some of the Food Trucks also provide catering services while building their presence through social events like family gatherings and celebrations – these services are marketed amply on social media.
Food Trucks x Hyperlocal Delivery Services
Since many food trucks moved to digital orders and delivery during the pandemic, their collaboration with food delivery services such as Swiggy, Dunzo, Zomato, also emerged as an content bucket on social media. This seems to work well for both, the loyal customers and the food truck brands for promotions, reach, and consistent services.