You have a great idea and you are ready to get your dream off the ground. But where do you start with your vehicle? There are lots of options, but which one is right for you? And how do you translate your winning idea into a brand to draw in the fans?
This is simpler than you think. Raccoon has put together 5 top tips to help you refine your brief and create your perfect mobile solution. Easy as pie!
How do you create your brand?
This is your starting point if you want to create a vehicle that is truly authentic. Maybe you already have a brand and need a refresh, or perhaps you are starting from scratch. Either way, you need to give serious thought to what it is that will differentiate you. What is the essence of your idea and what do you stand for? How are you planning to create an experience for your audience? Can you define your brand’s personality? The answers to these questions all feed into making the right decision on what vehicle would be the best fit for your company.
Following this, you’ll be in a good position to work on your visual identity and nail your logo, key messaging, colour palette and other design elements. Once in place, you’ll have everything you need to transfer to your street food vehicle.
Choosing your vehicle
Speaking of which, you now have a decision to make. The vehicle you invest in will be dependent on many things. Ask yourself whether your location will be static or whether you intend on travelling far and wide. Vintage vehicles are very charming but not that practical if you are doing long journeys…
Does your brand give you a clue on what direction to follow and can you be clever and practical in linking this up? For example, a compact Italian coffee offering could suit a Piaggio Ape.
Then there is the question of budget. Whether you plump for an ‘entry’ solution or something completely bespoke, it will all be dependent on how much you have to spend. Will the vehicle need converting so it fits your idea, and do you have the skills to do this?
And don’t forget to consider how much space you need to deliver your idea and what equipment is required, as this will influence the size of the vehicle you choose.
It is also worth mentioning that your solution may not be a vehicle, but instead a container or pop-up. Or perhaps your street food business is expanding into a restaurant? We hope these tips provide food for thought…
Kit and caboodle
You will need to start with a wish list for what is required inside your vehicle to create and deliver your winning idea. From griddle pans, microwaves or warming plates, to fridges, freezers and sinks, there is a range of catering equipment to consider (gas appliances will need more space than electric so remember to build this into your thinking).
Not only that, how much preparation and storage space do you need? You may need to be smart about how you utilise the space you have available for ingredients, supplies and utensils etc.
Your brand direction will help you specify the right finish inside the vehicle. From the work surfaces / serving counter right down to the fixtures and fittings, don’t overlook these details as they give you a big opportunity to say something about your brand.
It goes without saying that your space needs to work hard for you. In addition, it needs to be safe - so always make sure it is converted or checked out according to NCASS guidelines before you take to the road.
Wrapping and props
This is the part of the process where your idea propels into life and the magic happens. The trick here is ensuring that the design is right and that it is executed in the right way. The exterior wrap is responsible for grabbing attention and you only get one shot at a first impression. Your aim is to connect with your audience and tell your story quickly.
You will want a wrap that will withstand the elements and test of time, so team up with a production company that can not only specify a quality vinyl for your vehicle but will ensure it is fitted properly by experienced installers.
And why stop at the wrap? Get creative with additional props to add further interest. After all, your fans are always looking for Instagram content…
Which leads us on to our final tip. Yes it’s about achieving the perfect vehicle or environment. And yes, it’s definitely about mouth-watering food. But how do you plan to win fans and build your business?
Your vehicle provides the perfect platform for creating social content that you can share with your audience, which will ultimately build your brand and drive repeat visits. Utilise this. Help your fans follow you on and offline and build a plan to tell your stories.
Need more inspo on how to do this? Visit stand 1734 on the 25th September to meet celebrity street food chef the ‘Food Busker’ who is no stranger in expertly combining delicious food and engaging content. Raccoon is creating his #ContentKitchen, a bespoke mobile solution which will feature on our stand for the Expo. Come and take a look!