Gary Vaynerchuck is arguably the most well-known entrepreneur and social media thought-leader on the planet. Throughout the year you can watch daily tidbits of him running his business his YouTube Channel that’s rapidly approaching a million subscribers or Instagram. Vaynerchuck’s company, VaynerMedia, provides marketing consulting from Fortune 500 companies to the biggest athletes in the world. But while attending a recent marketing conference, Vaynerchuck took some time out of his speaking schedule to offer some specific advice to a small business owner… specifically a food truck owner.
If you’re someone that’s never heard of Gary Vaynerchuck don’t worry! As background Vaynerchuck has a regular YouTube / Podcast called “Ask GaryVee” where people call or email a variety of business, social media, and even life choice questions to Gary. Gary takes these questions and gives his no-holds barred perspective on questions that are asked.
As Vaynerchuck describes in the video below, he met this food truck owner at a conference / book signing. The woman that owns the food truck received a signed book, but came back to Vaynerchuck to ask for seek specific advice about the operations of her food truck. Vaynerchuck gives her major praise for coming back to speak with him personally about her business and shared the mini consulting session below through his vlog.
The reason this woman sought Gary’s advice was to get his opinion on why her food truck was struggling. The woman had started an all-American BBQ food truck. Her first food truck was a huge success, profitable, and gained a following quickly. But… after adding a second and third food truck she found the growth difficult to manage and the new trucks to not be as profitable as the first. She then asked Gary what his thoughts were and admitted she wasn’t able to pinpoint where things started to go wrong.
Gary starts by asking the woman what changed after growing to three food trucks. This was a terrific question after all the day-to-day work of a food truck owner with one truck is very different than someone that owns three. With a single truck, you can have your hands in every aspect of the operations from the business from front-of-house and greeting customers to cooking meals and everything in between. But when you scale to multiple locations, your role needs to change. You will be doing more management of people and securing business for the trucks. It’s a completely different position!
Gary asks the entrepreneur to work back and think about all the different aspects of her business that changed after expanding to three trucks. The woman mentions that she used to take orders from the window. Now other employees accept the orders. The recipes and portion sizes may have changed… even slightly after this expansion as well. Vaynerchuck then explains to the woman how she needs to work backwards and figure out all the things that changed with her business operations initially and see what could be done to build more process into her business and make the total experience closer to what she had when there was only one truck.
Social Media Marketing
Gary Vaynerchuck first became well-known in the marketing space for being an expert on the topic of social media. Gary then offers the business owner a tactic on Instagram that could work extremely well for a food truck business.
The idea is to find 20 social media influencers that are nearby the city you operate in. Gary then recommended reaching out to 20 people per day, saying you like their profile and then offering them free lunch at the truck. By consistently applying this tactic over time, Gary believes that you could become an extremely popular truck in the area assuming your food is of high-quality.
Gary also clarifies that it’s important to implement this strategy on Instagram specifically. Why? Because it has more organic reach than other social media websites like Facebook. Organic reach is a description of the number of people that see your post for free online and don’t have to pay for it with advertising.
The conversation is pretty in-depth considering that this advice was given at a marketing event where Gary was likely being approached to speak with many high-level marketers or business people. So major props to Gary for taking the time to consult with a small food business owner. The owner walked away with some very specific takeaways that she said would be implemented in her business.
Whether you’re currently operating a concession business or just thinking about it, we recommend watching this video to anyone. It demonstrates just how challenging operating any type of business, including a food truck can be.