Meet Social Media’s New Darling – Food Trucks

Summer in D.C. equates to great weather and great food — a winning combination by most standards. Here in the District, one of the great incentives about working in the city is that you can enjoy both — at least from May through October, that is. Just a few blocks from Isom Global Strategies’ headquarters, a delectable aroma of Thai, tacos, gyros, cheese steaks, sushi, crepes, cupcakes, BBQ and about a couple of dozen others (including fried Oreos?!) fill the city air. Are you getting hungry yet?  A sea of colorfully themed food trucks line up and down Chinatown’s bustling streets, eagerly awaiting hungry Washingtonians, tourists and foodies alike.

With an expected revenue growth of $2.7 billion by the year 2017, the food truck industry is quickly becoming a foodie’s staple. You wouldn’t know it, but D.C. hasn’t always been a food truck lover’s paradise. The food truck phenomenon originated in Los Angeles and made its way to the East Coast, forever leaving its mark on our nation’s capital… and our tummies.

From a public relations perspective, it is interesting to assess the food truck industry’s ability to leverage social media to maximize their brand. Food truck companies understand how to effectively market, communicate and establish a relationship with their audience, thus helping improve the reputation of the food industry as a whole. With communication devices such as smartphones and tablets, food truckers are able to gain a real presence on social media by connecting with their customers, and generating conversation and, in some extreme cases, instigating a cult following. Food truck owners utilize social media platforms like Twitter to promote their brand, often tweeting their next location to their followers and relying heavily on retweets from their fans. In one online study, food trucks were shown to have a total of 453,065 followers on Twitter and 267,006 likes on Facebook, and 57 percent of food truck owners had more Twitter followers than they did likes on Facebook. Unlike traditional brick-and-mortar food service outlets, food trucks are more convenient because they are always on-the-go, making them more accessible to more people. With names such as “Ohh Dat Chicken” and “Dirty South Deli” plastered on the side of neon-colored trucks, it’s no surprise that these trucks draw attention and generate conversation! Share some of your favorite food trucks with us using #IGSFoodies.

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