At Altrincham HQ we work with a lot of foodie businesses and restaurants and 3 Trends have dominated the past few years – Street Food, Gormet Burgers and more recently, it’s the turn of Gormet (Hot) Dogs
Pitta Crepe are a businesses that have been in Altrincham for the past 3 years and they stand out not just because they are the only Street Food business in Altrincham, but because they’ve built up their reputation purely on Social Media and word of mouth … and haven’t spent a penny on Traditional Advertising
Let’s take a look at how Simon at Pitta Crepe made a really successful local business
LAUNCHING AHEAD OF THE CURVE
Altrincham is not the Northern Quarter, Camden or Shoreditch.
When Pitta Crepe launched in Altrincham in 2011, Street Food may have been in vogue in trendier contemporary city spaces, but it didn’t exist in a small suburban town like Altrincham
For those that live in the town you have to remember – this was before the revival of Altrincham Market and the only time you could effectively get Street Food was from the annual Taste Of Trafford event
Pitta Crepe were a business ahead of the curve and it set them up well, but it isn’t easy when you’re providing something that people might not be ready for Altrincham is a foodie town in terms of restaurants, but at the time street food meant burgers and chips. Thankfully if you were looking for quality food on the go they have no competition – the only alternative is a Boots Meal Deal or a Greggs pasty (and they don’t really count)
STREET FOOD IS MORE THAN A BURGER VAN + HYGIENE STANDARDS ARE THE SAME AS RESTAURANTS
When you launch ahead of the curve you come across people’s misconceptions
Firstly the main misconception when Pitta Crepe launched was 1. Despite the name, it’s a van that serves food, so it must just be burgers etc – and 2. What about the hygiene standards of a food van vs a bricks and mortar outfit
Hard to believe it, but when something new launches you have to fight these perceptions. Pitta Crepe again chose to go with at the time “new” trends such as BBQ Pulled Pork, Jerk Chicken and Falafel so that if people walked up to the van they took much more interest than standard fare
Also a Social Media Campaign on their 5 Star Hygiene rating helped to re-enforce how important hygiene is to street food vans. The hygiene ratings for vans are judged in exactly the same way to bricks and mortar pubs and restaurants and Pitta Crepe rose above many of those other local outlets
MARKET IN THE YEAR YOU’RE DOING BUSINESS IN
To date Simon at Pitta Crepe hasn’t done any Traditional Advertising (i.e the local newspaper or flyer runs)
That’s not to say he was a digital native and totally got Social Media from the offset
When Altrincham HQ 1st met Simon at Pitta Crepe we had a lot of conversations about Social Media and why they should be using twitter and Facebook to market.
When I say a lot I mean a SERIOUS amount of conversations and there were 2 reasons for that:
1. The omelette pitta’s were out of this world (hint: he should bring them back as I still can’t recreate how good those omelettes are at home)
2. Even though we’d had a huge amount of success with other businesses locally there was still nobody else using social media in the near vicinity. To put some context on it – the shopping centre where Pitta Crepe are based weren’t using social media at all at the time and neither were any of the other businesses on George Street (at a hyper local level at least even though the national chains were using UK wide social media)
Once we convinced Simon on the benefits of Social Media, he soon saw how working with a professional marketing agency was beneficial and was amazed by the simple but effective results
- Customers were happy to shout about how good the food was at Pitta Crepe
- They were telling their friends and their friends came too
- They left reviews on TripAdvisor which encouraged tourists from outside the town to visit
- The circle started again, the audience grows and they were able to educate locals on street food, introduce new menu items and win over customers
People often ask what is the Return on Investment in Social Media? When you’re doing no other marketing other than Social Media the ROI is easy to measure, it’s quantifiable!
SUCCESS SUCCESS SUCCESS
By being proactive in Social Media Marketing, Pitta Crepe is at the centre of Altrincham’s social media scene and leads the pack as far as high street digital marketing goes.
Pitta Crepe is changing and adapting it’s marketing all the time, but there’s no doubt Social Media has been a huge success for Pitta Crepe over the past 3 years and continues to be so
Simon Badrock of Pitta Crepe says
“With Alex’s help Social Media has really helped shape our business. I didn’t even have a Twitter or Facebook account before I met Alex, and was very sceptical about what it could actually do for us. In the end we decided to just go for it, and with Alex’s help and support we haven’t looked back since. It has helped us in many ways I would never have imagined possible, such as catching the attention of and getting us reviewed by renowned food bloggers and mentioned in local and national newspapers. Also the one I definitely never saw coming was TripAdvisor. When somebody says something nice about us on Twitter we always ask them to leave a review. Sometimes they do, and I’m sure that has helped us retain our consistently high ranking”
If you’d like to find out more look at www.altrinchamhq.co.uk or call 07806774279 to discuss Social Media Training / Management
“With over 12 years experience of Social Media and 17 years experience of online marketing in other companies, clients come to myself when they want a veteran rather than a rookie” Alex McCann