Is starting a food truck business a good idea

Posted by Damian Roberti on

Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

So, welcome to Food Truck Freeks. In this podcast, which we will upload to Are we going to upload this, guys, to YouTube as well? All right. Yeah, we're going to upload this also to YouTube and it'll be up on our podcasts available as well, down below in the description section. You can check us out on those multiple platforms. We are on 11 podcast platforms. So check out the Food Truck Freeks podcast as well. And if you're brand new to our YouTube channel and this is your first video, welcome. We are all about food truck entrepreneurship and getting your food truck business up and running while bringing you all the resources you need to be successful doing it. My name is Damian Roberti. I'm actually a food entrepreneur. I have been in the food industry for over 35 years, and I operate multiple YouTube channels here on YouTube. We have quite a few of them. One of them is about to reach our 100,000 subscriber milestone, and that's Marketing Food Online. So, definitely check out those links down below and our other food entrepreneur channels as well.

 

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Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

But let's dive into this. I've actually got five specific reasons why it is a great idea to start a food truck business, even in 2022. And I'm going to be more specific about why that is, but we're going to dive into the five. Now, this is in no particular order. These are not going to be top fives from five down to one. All five of them can give you a great understanding of why you need to open a food truck. If you're on the fence and you're kind of figuring out whether I'm not sure, my friends are telling me this. It's all nonsense after you hear these five. If you're hearing negative vibes from people about starting a food truck business, unfortunately, I would tell you to just find some new friends and get some people who are more positive around you. Because food trucks are one of the things that you can invest in and start with, and you can actually create, experiment, and do a lot of things that you can do, but you can't do in a brick and mortar. I actually should know because I operated an Italian bakery and deli. Italian deli and bakery businesses.

Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

We had gelato and panini sandwiches. My wife and I started it quite a few years ago. I learned a lot, actually. I made some really good decisions and I made some decisions that could have been better. But particularly, these five things are going to help you out and understand your food truck business. So number one, food trucks can actually get more customers to them than a brick and mortar restaurant. Okay? Now here's the reason why I say this. Food trucks can attract more people because food trucks are mobile food businesses, as you know, but the places you go to are particularly events. That's festivals, farmers' markets, local brew pubs, whatever it may be, but those events are in need of eateries. They need mobile food businesses.

Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

So, those fairs and festivals and different events that have all kinds of things going on. If it's a concert or if it's an outdoor event and they don't have any eateries around them, they're reliant upon the food truck. They're reliant on you to be there. And for that reason, you are catering to people who are going to be hungry. So if you're a pizza truck, a taco truck, if you're doing hamburgers and hot dogs, or if you're doing fine dining cuisine and there is no eatery around and it's an event and you may be one of maybe two or three, maybe just a few food trucks, you are going to have people come to you. Now, when you have a brick and mortar, this is something I learned from my own experience. For brick and mortar restaurants, cafes, or delis like we had, we relied on foot traffic. And if you're in a shopping plaza and, for some particular reason, you don't get a lot of foot traffic in that plaza, people are not necessarily going to come deliberately to your restaurant unless you have really good food, really good service, your prices are right, and a whole list of other things.

Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

So the beauty of having a food truck is that you can take your food truck specifically to where people will be in need of eating. Do you follow what I'm saying? So you can actually generate business because you are the one there with the business. On the other hand, with brick and mortar, you've got traffic, you've got people driving by. You might be in a good plaza, you might be in a busy plaza, but they may not want the type of food that you have, or maybe they just don't have the funds to eat out at that time. There are a lot of reasons why you may not get business from just foot traffic, but a food truck is going there. It's going to a place specifically where they're in need of food. So food trucks can actually end up getting more customers that way, okay?

Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

Next up, Okay, number two is that food trucks have a very low operational overhead. When you have a food truck and you have a very basic or simple menu, maybe you've got a few ingredients. The assembly of those ingredients to create your finalized food product doesn't take rocket science to put it together. So you and possibly one or two other people can literally run a food truck and make six figures or more per year.Or even 30, 40,000 a month, wherever you might be, of course, based on your location. But you have low operational costs. Now, take that and consider a brick and mortar restaurant, a cafe, or something that you want to open up that's brick and mortar. There is an enormous amount of, I can tell you from my own experience, not only is the insurance insanely high, but you've got a lot of payroll because you're going to have way more than just two people running a restaurant. You've got cooks, your chefs, you've got people cleaning, bus boys, waiters, waitresses, insurance for the building, insurance for the customers coming in the door, insurance for the employees. It goes on and on. So overall, your operational expenses for a food truck are low. Now, here's another one really quickly. This is not one of the five, but this is something that just came into my mind. The other great thing is that if you have a successful food truck and it's in one city or county within your state, you can take that and literally not only franchise it, but you can actually open up one, two, three, four, even five different food trucks with the same menu, because it's done so well in that city or county within your state. Or even branch out and have it in another state. But you can have multiple food trucks operating at multiple events, covering multiple areas. Okay? That's something to think about, too. Obviously, you can franchise a restaurant. Everybody knows that you can do that, but the operational cost of getting that up and running every single month and having multiple locations of that is enormous compared to a food truck.

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Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

So the second benefit is a low operational cost.Number three. What's great about the food truck business is that you have the ability to try new locations, okay? So if you've got a certain menu and you are, let's say, creating gourmet tacos, and you've got a specific type of fresh meat or protein that you're making, you've got your own sauces and marinades, whatever it may be, you've got a successful food truck, but you know what? The location you've been at lately is not really doing all that great. You can't just pick up a brick and mortar restaurant. Like I mentioned in the beginning of the podcast, if you're doing no business at a brick and mortar, you can't just close it up, pick it up, and then go to another place and reopen it immediately. In your food truck, though, you can. You can drive that food truck to another location. You can drive that food truck to maybe a new event that's in town that doesn't have any vendors that are selling tacos and you can sell out like crazy. Okay? So you have the ability to test out new areas. And if you find out, you know what? That area over there performs admirably.This area over here, I just don't do much business in. You can experiment with that.

Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

That's the beauty of a food truck, okay? Next up, You can use a food truck to experiment with a concept if you eventually do want to have a brick and mortar. So the idea is to test the menu in the community you're in, but with a low overhead.By the way, I don't know if you know this or not, but if you're watching this and you're not aware of this, you don't even have to buy a food truck. You can rent or even lease one, making it even a more minimal amount of an investment. If it doesn't work out, well, the food truck goes back to the owner, you pack up your stuff, and you're done, right? But at least you tried. At least you tried; at least you experimented and checked to see whether or not it really did work. But the idea is that you could test out a concept or a brand before you make a big investment. When I opened up, my wife and I cleared out our savings, we maxed out our credit cards, and we did a lot of other things financially that probably weren't the smartest thing to do, but we did it on our own, and we invested a lot of money in it.

 

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Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

So when it opened, it did well. It didn't do fantastic, I'll be honest. It did great, it did well, but it wasn't doing what we really, truly wanted it to do. So we transitioned to e-commerce and we've been there for 12 years since. So, if it works out, great; then you can take that concept and say, "You know what? Now it's time. I'm going to transition into a restaurant. "" Because the great thing is, a lot of restaurants now, because of what happened in 2019 and all, have a limited amount of space open, or they've reopened their dining rooms, or they have been impacted so dramatically that they've actually expanded into food trucks to try to reach the community and to go out into places that are in the areas that they're in. Not reliant solely on brick and mortar, okay? So that's another great reason why you have a food truck, because you can expand on an existing brand or test one out before you make that big dive into getting a brick and mortar. Number five, low initial investment.

Is starting a food truck business a good idea?

 

So, number five is the food truck business, which, really, in comparison to brick and mortars, is a very low-investment type of business. Now don't get me wrong. I'm sure plenty of you are saying, "Well, Damien, I've heard that it's $100,000 to open up a food truck." No, it's not There is no need for you to purchase a $130,000 food truck with 125 seats.Is it going to cost you about 50 to 60 on the low end, or even around 70 or 80? Potentially If you want to get one, it's obviously got the right equipment. Maybe you have a used truck, but you have to retrofit it and build it out, but you're going to use brand new equipment. Licenses and permits, an initial investment in payroll for a few months, ingredients, small wares, and anything else you need in terms of other permits and licenses with the city or countiesOf course, Yes. But if you compare that to a brick and mortar, 50 or $60, you couldn't open up any restaurant that I know of for 50 or $60, not even close.

 

 

So the initial investment to get it started is way, way, way considerably lower. So, if you want to test out a concept, get a food truck. If you want to have the ability and flexibility to be anywhere and go anywhere and meet your customers where they are, get a food truck. If you don't have $200, $300,000 to dive into a restaurant, or even more than that, actually, then get a food truck. Remember, like I said before, you don't have to necessarily buy one. You could rent it or lease it. You can create any type of contractual agreement you want with the person who owns the food truck, or even better yet, there are companies that actually make food trucks and simply lease them and rent them out. There's lease-to-own. You can even rent it or rent-to-own it. You can even lease-to-own a food truck. All of these are available, these different ideas. You have to be the one to initiate that movement and go towards it and try it and see what you can do. But all in all, food truck businesses are a great idea because, at the end of the day, if it works out, then you've got a great idea.

 

 

And you also gain a lot of experience. More importantly, you experience what it is to run a food truck business, okay? So, if that was a great video and helped you out, let us know down below with a big thumbs up. And if you have a comment on the food truck business, or if any of this information was helpful, do let us know in the comment section. And be sure to subscribe because we've got hundreds of videos on this channel, a brand new channel. It's going to be up and running with all kinds of great content for you guys. And I'll see you in the next video.

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