While impressing a food critic might get your food truck into the press, reaching out to food writers gives you a better chance.
Once you’ve written a press release, you need to distribute it to interested parties.
Find out which publications you should target, which writers write specifically about food trucks, food/restaurants, small/local businesses, or events, and how to contact them. Focus on local media, industry publications and blogs, business journals, and regional magazines. Find the contact information for a department head or an editor if you can’t figure out the media contact person.
Once you have this knowledge, you’ll be prepared to tailor your pitches. Take a publication’s audience into account and send stories that are relevant to their readership. For example, send a press release outlining an initiative to offer a new vegetarian dish featuring locally sourced produce each week to a vegetarian publication or one focused on local products and companies.
It is a good idea to build relationships with writers who are likely to write about your food truck. When you send a press release, make sure you use the writer’s name and personalize the content by mentioning how the pitch is relevant to their other work. Make sure to introduce yourself, to follow up, and to keep in touch.
If you don’t have a press release to distribute, you can still communicate with writers by sending them relevant articles and information and by liking and sharing their social media posts.
When you continually interact with a writer, you make yourself familiar with them, and they may come to you when they are looking for a story, especially if you’ve provided them with interesting ideas and content in the past. They are also more likely to pick up a pitch you send to their inbox if they recognize your name or email address.
Part of building a strong relationship with writers is being respectful of their time and effort. Don’t send the same release twice or refuse to take no for an answer. Wasting a reporter’s time will only decrease the chances they’ll read over the next press release you send.
Bloggers are a different breed than traditional members of the press, but their influence and impact can be just as strong. If you find a blog you’d like your truck to be featured in, directly contact the writer, tell them about your food truck, and invite them to come to your food truck. Let them experience what you have to offer rather than sending a formal press release. Personalize your message and use their name. Tell them why you are reaching out and show them that you know about their blog. Express your personality and passion to get them excited about your food truck business.
To ensure that writers can find out more about your food truck once they have taken the interest, make sure you have a strong online presence. Your social media profiles and website should clearly state who you are and what you do.
If a blogger on Twitter can’t tell that you are a food truck, their curiosity will quickly fade.
Use hashtags relevant to the mobile food industry, your style of cuisine, and your locale to increase exposure to food writers.
Share high-quality photographs to show the media what you have to offer. Always let your social media followers know where you are going to be and if there are any delays. If a writer sets out to visit your truck but can’t because you aren’t where you said you would be, they might not take the time to try again.