food truck marketing ideas
by Laura-Andreea Voicu

Food trucks attract customers due to their convenience, signature cuisines, and community aspect. You can be wildly successful with a food truck if you know how to promote it and take advantage of its unique features. The food truck marketing ideas below will show you just that. So, without further ado, here’s how to market a food truck business.

Food Truck Demographics

Before you start devising your food truck marketing strategy, you need to look at food truck customer demographics. This will help you see who is usually drawn to food trucks. According to IBISWorld, 43.4% of food truck customers are in the 25 to 44 age demographic. An additional 19.7% are under the age of 25.

What does this market segmentation mean for your food truck business? One key takeaway would be that most of your target audience is an avid social media user. And since you want to be where the customer is, you need to develop a solid social media presence to attract people to your food truck.

Food Truck Food Ideas

Are you thinking of opening a food truck, but you’re still unsure of what your signature food should be? Luckily, there are many unique food truck ideas you can explore. Here are just a few:

  • Tacos
  • Burritos
  • Pizza
  • Falafel
  • Gyros
  • Burgers
  • Hot dogs
  • Waffles
  • Ice cream
  • Smoothies

How to Market a Food Truck: 10 Food Truck Marketing Ideas

1. Attend festivals and events

As a food truck owner, food festivals are your bread and butter. You can’t go wrong with attending as many festivals as possible, and not just food festivals. Music festivals are also a perfect place for food trucks to shine.

Keep a close eye on any events happening in your area and inquire about joining as a food provider. That’s what’s going to get you the most loyal customers in the end because people will remember your food and seek you out.

With that in mind, make sure you bring many promotional materials like business cards to every event you attend. Hand them out to people, so they know where to find you.

2. Go all-in on social media

Like I mentioned above, most food truck enthusiasts are active on social media. It goes without saying you should be too. Social media marketing for food trucks is not that different from marketing a regular restaurant.

What matters most is being constant and active. Post often, share delicious photos of your food, give exclusive discount codes to the people who follow you, and engage users directly by organizing contests and giveaways.

Apart from the three most popular social media platforms, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, I also recommend creating a Yelp and TripAdvisor profile. Encourage reviews and keep both locals and tourists updated on your schedule, menu, and more.

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3. Explore location-based food truck advertising

Since one of the defining characteristics of a food truck is that it can move, take advantage of location-based advertising to boost your sales. For example, if you have relocated to a music festival, you can use geofencing marketing to create ads that target smartphone users in the area.

Then, all you need is a creative ad text to draw them to your food truck. In keeping with the music festival idea, you could say: “Take a photo with your friends, and you all get a 10% discount at our food truck.”

4. Come up with unique branding

Branding is among the top food truck marketing ideas that can help you stand out in the crowd. From the way you design the food truck to its name, the promotional materials, and the signage, every detail is crucial in building your brand identity.

As a food truck owner, you should invest a lot in signage. That’s what people see first, and it might make the difference between them choosing your truck or going somewhere else. Passersby will make up a large chunk of your audience.

Ensure that people who see your food truck from across the street immediately understand what you’re selling. Place a large chalkboard sign in front of the food truck where you write the specials. Come up with unique names for them and draw something cute or fun on the board to attract people’s attention.

Once people get closer, your branding should become even more apparent. From packaging with your logo on it to business cards shaped like a food truck or like the food you’re selling, everything should scream “unique.”

5. Do food delivery and catering

Food truck catering and delivery are going to be another integral part of your sales. Don’t just wait for people to come to you – go to them as well. First, set up a website for your food truck business. This is practically necessary for this day and age, even if you don’t deliver.

Then, after you’ve set up your delivery/catering business, promote it like crazy on your website, social media, physical food truck, promotional materials that you distribute around the neighborhood, etc.

Whenever someone visits your food truck, ask, “Did you know that we also deliver?” while handing them a business card with information on where they can place an order.

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6. Look for partnership opportunities in the neighborhood

Food trucks often go hand in hand with other businesses because they complement each other so well. Seek out those businesses and propose mutually beneficial partnerships. Do you have a local farmer’s market? Inquire with the organizer about catering your delicious food to visitors.

In summer, many towns organize open-air cinemas. That is your chance to shine as people love to snack on street food at movies. Are there any local pubs that don’t serve actual food? Ask them if you can camp out front and provide it. The list goes on and on.

7. Offer discounts and promotions

I don’t have to tell you that any food business thrives on promotions and special offers. Provide regular offers and discounts to both online and offline customers. From classic first-time discounts to free delivery, “bring a friend” combo deals, complimentary drinks, and more, there’s no shortage of food truck promotions you can offer.

8. Travel to new places

You don’t need innovative food truck ideas to tell you to take advantage of your food truck’s mobility to the max. Don’t be afraid to get on the road and explore new neighborhoods and even new cities.

This makes the most sense when you’re traveling for a special event or a festival where you know you’ll get new customers. However, as long as you promote where you’ll be next on social media and your website, you should be able to travel anytime you want and still expect people to show up.

9. Host events with local performers

Speaking of beneficial partnerships, contacting local performers is a win-win. They get the exposure they need and some extra cash; you get to attract more people to your food truck by providing live entertainment. After all, you don’t need a music festival to shine; you can just make your own in the middle of town.

10. Be generous to those in need

Last but not least, truly become a member of the community by doing your part for people in need. According to a Fortune poll, customers prefer businesses that give to charity, so you’ll also be making a name for yourself in the process.

Donate to food banks or give all the leftover food to homeless people every evening. You can also make cash donations and encourage your customers to donate too for a small discount or coupon code.

Final Words

You can’t put together an air-tight food truck business plan without thinking of how to promote it. I hope these food truck marketing ideas have given you some inspiration on how to attract people to your food truck and make the most of its unique selling points.

photo of GloriaFood blog writer Laura-Andreea Voicu
Laura-Andreea Voicu

Laura-Andreea Voicu is an experienced content writer with a knack for marketing and SEO. She delivers business-optimized content to help restaurants boost sales and grow their brand.