Gastronomy has long been a key part of communication strategies and has been used to promote almost everything, from tourist destinations to commercial brands. Show cooking sessions and press breakfasts, for example, have been a staple of the industry for years, but in recent years food trucks have emerged as a useful new tool.
This new movement has taken Spain by storm. A few years ago, or even just a few months ago, most people didn’t know what a food truck was. But today these ‘street restaurants’ are everywhere, bringing us their food in an appealing and informal way.
Their origins are debated but it is likely that they emerged in the UK during the Second World War. With soldiers constantly on the move, organizers found that it was easier and quicker to serve them food from trucks as opposed to from makeshift canteens which would have to be erected and dismantled every time they moved. Since then, the concept of the food truck has evolved, leaving with us with a plethora of iconic images from the traditional 1950s ice-cream van to the hot dog trucks popular with the hippies in the 1960s. But it wasn’t until the 1980s and 1990s that these stands came to be defined as food trucks and really took hold in New York, Miami and San Francisco.
The quality of the food available from food trucks has improved remarkably since then, as has the presentation and decoration. No longer do they just sell ice cream, hot dogs or hamburgers. Today food trucks offer a wide range of quality and carefully-prepared food. Even high-profile chefs have started to get involved.
Thanks to its exponential growth in recent years, this latest gastronomic trend is an ideal way to promote a brand. Events or communication campaigns with a gastronomic angle appeal to a range of different target groups and, in the process, are capable of generating widespread brand awareness. Using food as a promotional hook is nothing new. Competitions, cooking marathons, show cooking sessions and now food trucks are widespread, as are creative and innovative gastronomic ‘illusions.’
MdC has extensive experience of organising events with a gastronomic theme for clients. The agency continuously embraces new trends, as shown by the solidarity cooking marathon organised for BEKO Home Appliances which won various national and international awards. Elsewhere, show cooking and food trucks were used, as were gastronomic ‘illusions,’ as the basis of an event organised for ANFEVI, the National Association of Glass Container Producers. Bringing together creativity, pure culinary talent and visual tricks, the food surprised and quickly caught the attention of the public.
This approach is made possible thanks to the 360º campaigns that MdC develops for its clients, drawing on advertising, digital PR, media relations, events and all other elements of the marketing mix.