As a newbie entrepreneur, it can be tough to find your footing within your chosen industry. If you are looking to make it in the food sector, you will probably find it ruthless and highly competitive. The amount of new eateries and pop up foodie events that crop up each year is on the increase. More people than ever are becoming passionate about where their food comes from and using seasonal and local ingredients. If you are tempted to follow your culinary dreams, you need to be prepared to put in the hours and be ready for a steep learning curve. Take a look at this guide to help you build your food empire.
If you want to test the waters before committing to a full blown eatery, venturing out into the community at local street food events can be the most effective way to give your cuisine massive exposure. Perhaps you want to try some fusion cuisine, set up a food van to show off food from your heritage or do some ad hoc foodie market research. Street food has become very on trend in recent years. Food festivals across the country take place annually and see thousands of visitors flock to them so that they try new gastronomic fayre. You might want to set yourself up in a gazebo or you might want to convert a horse trailer with some commercial food equipment, a gas supply and electrics. This can create a cutesy and unique food brand from which to launch your business.
Just like any other business, you need a plan. You may need funding which means heading down to your local bank and applying for a business loan. To do this, you need a plan that the person making the funding decision can scrutinize. They will want to see that you have mitigated any risks that may come your way, that you understand your net from your gross, and that you have made accurate financial forecasts for at least your first three years of trading.
It can be difficult, as a food business, to secure funding from traditional routes as anything food based is seen as a high risk to invest in. Try to mitigate this by branching out a little. If you are looking to embark on a street food venture, think about jarring some of your sauces and try to get these onto supermarket shelves. Think about running a cookery course, teaching others how to cook your authentic cuisine. Or maybe you want to set up some pop up eateries. Get this written in your business plan and exploit it. Be enthusiastic when you pitch and get suited and booted to create a good impression.
If you want to take the plunge and set up your own restaurant, you need to carry out some market research to help you work out where to situate your eatery, the price point of your food, and the sort of menu that you should have on offer.
Restaurants pop up every year and many fail each year. To make sure that you are successful, make sure you choose the right location. Try to choose an inner city area where you are in the thick of it all. You want restaurants around you to attract foodies. You can be the new kid on the block giving diners a new gastronomic option when they head out for dinner. Being in the center with great transport links means that leases can be higher. Don’t go for so much square footage that it means you have too many covers each night. Start small and take out a short term lease to ensure that you aren’t going to spending too much money.
Ensure that your menu includes alcoholic drinks as well as artisan options. Obtain your drinks licence and top up your profits with lucrative alcohol markups. Craft your menu so that it hits every diner from the vegan to the diet conscious. Keep your prices as low as possible but ensuring that you have a healthy profit margin. You need to appear good value and well positioned in the market to offer up something new.
Being a newbie food business will mean beginning small and learning the ropes from your rivals. As you earn a positive and glowing reputation through online reviews and word of mouth, you may find your food empire growing and surging in popularity. Follow this guide and you can make a success of your business.