Whether prospective entrepreneurs enter the food vending arena to earn extra income or to start a full-blown concession trailer business, this industry offers many advantages. One of the most attractive aspects of the food trailer business is the ability of owners to “call their own shots.”
Leaving a regimented, workaday environment for freedom and flexibility is one of the many reasons that people are drawn toward careers in concessions. This is not to say that food cart and concession trailer proprietors don’t work hard or that there are no administrative hurdles to navigate. But there is a degree of autonomy in food stand ownership that cannot be found in most other professions.
The decision-making process rests with the independent concessionaire in regard to when and where to set up shop, which products to serve and how to market their food stands. Vendors may choose to start with “standard” concession food equipment such as a hot dog roller, popcorn maker or nacho machine. Or they may try something a little more unconventional such as gourmet pretzels or kettle popcorn.
Successful owners of food carts leave “no stone unturned” when it comes to developing marketing ideas and ways to separate themselves from the competition. It is always wise to survey the territory before venturing into a new event or area. If other food vendors are peddling standard fare, those offering atypical menu items will often reap the rewards.
Vendors may also choose to branch out into areas such as catering or opt to offer an exclusive food item. For instance, having the only funnel cake concession trailer at a particular event can prove to be very profitable.
Food stand owners can also be creative in their marketing endeavors. Robust websites with social media alerts and Facebook pages can stir up customer interest. Discount coupons distributed throughout an area before a festival or other event is a good idea as well.
Concession trailer owners have the freedom to customize their careers and operate on their own terms. Whether they are happy to work on a part-time or “specialized” basis, or whether they set the bar high for sales and profits, the possibilities are wide open.