Mini Restaurants are becoming a great new business model for many Entrepreneurs who can spot opportunities in their home town, where they live. Any parking lot by a busy road or a downtown street corner can become a potential location to target with a Mini Restaurant. This business model has proven itself to be profitable in countries all over the world for as long as humans can remember.
The reason this business works so well can be found in the fact that it caters towards a basic human need: People need to eat and they love to eat! In the following article I will tell you how you can profit from this fact.
So, what is a “Mini Restaurant” you might wonder? A Mini Restaurant is simply a kitchen on wheels that can be set up at any place where people drive by, walk by or stop by. Mini Restaurants often focus on offering a limited menu of specialty foods that can be served quickly and have a highly perceived value.
The reason why Mini Restaurants are becoming so popular is because they represent “impulse purchasing sites” where customers get instant gratification in the forms of Ice Cream or Coffee or comfort foods like Bar-B-Q Sandwiches or Pizzas.
These Mini Restaurant Operations are easy to put together and build into a profitable business. But setting a business up is only half of the work. The other often neglected aspect is marketing! The time you spent working “on” your business is worth a lot more than the time you spend working “in” your business. Planning to be present at future events and festivals takes long term scheduling of your time. Every weekend counts, especially during the busy summer months. If you don’t keep good records it is hard to remember how you did financially on a particular show or event.
After doing many shows and festivals, I started to set up daily in my town and found it to be way more profitable. This is where the easy and fast money is! I found out that the best strategy is to rent a lot on a busy street and start your own daily restaurant operation. This way you can build your business from the ground up and create a place of interest to many people.
Here is a secret how you can get free traffic and publicity to your business:
Create events! Events are interesting and engage the public’s mind. A lot of times you can get talented people to work with you for free if you strike win- win situations with them. Here are some ideas for you:
- Get a chainsaw artist to carve sculptures out of logs and sell them as well.
- Talk to local bands if they would like to jam at your place and sell their albums.
- Start a weekly open mike night where people come together and enjoy great food, music and drinks.
- Start a benefit event where you collect money for a worthy cause.
- Team up with other “non-competing” mobile businesses in your area and offer them to set up on your lot. Good options are produce vendors as well as plant and flower vendors.
- Call a local radio station and ask them to broadcast from your place.
Keep in mind that “an event” doesn’t always mean some orchestrated happening. You can create an event by simply having something of interest for visitors. The idea is to think of ways to grab people’s attention. If nothing else, write a story about your operation, interesting experiences or some new menu items and give people some reasons to check you out. Send your story out to all newspapers in your area. This way, it is easy to get the attention of the media and get them to print and air your news.
This means: free advertising for you and plenty of business at your “Mini Restaurant”! Now all you have to do is turn the visitors into buyers. And this is easy to do when they smell, try and taste you specialty foods!