Outwit, Outplay, Outlast, Out-market (Food Truck Edition)

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I’ve been watching the Great Food Truck Race on Food Network. It is just like the other competition shows with teams, challenges and eliminations. The thing that has impressed me so far:  The Nom Nom Truck.  I have no idea is their food is any good, but their marketing strategy is spot on.

They have been rolling over the competition with a few key ideas:

Find the right partner

At a stop in Texas, they contacted a local gourmet food market.  They figured, Vietnamese sandwiches in Texas might be a hard sell, but going where the “adventurous eaters” go is where they’ll find there customer base.  The market made announcements and also helped the team out during a challenge.

In New Orleans, they parked in front of the Pinkberry store.  Considering all of the yogurt chasers that chain attracts, the customers would embrace this LA-based food truck too.

Make it work for you: find a complementary product with the same customers you have.  It is a lot harder to move upmarket or downmarket via your partners.  It is an easier sell when you are already talking to the same people

Your fans are influencers

For the first challenge, the trucks went south to San Diego.  The Nom Nom truck went to Facebook and their fans told their friends in San Diego.  Suddenly it was a trending topic among SD college students.  Sell-outs ensued.

Make it work for you: when you have news, tell your customer right away. You never know where their networks may reach.

What marketing lessons have you learned from the food truck craze?