Food, Drink & Restaurant Promos

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Using Promotional Products For Marketing Your Food Truck


food truck marketing ideas

Traveling kitchens, mobile canteens, grease trucks – whatever your city calls them, nothing is hotter right now in the catering business than food trucks. East to West Coast, Americans are loving getting their lunches via the quick and easily accessible truck right outside their office.

Food trucks are no longer that greasy, roach coach you pass by and wonder what type of meat they are actually serving in their sandwiches. Now, in 2014, food trucks are changing to attract new, loyal customers.

In 2011, a law passed that allowed food trucks to apply for liquor licenses. This became a huge step in the evolution of food truck dining and opened yet another door for economic growth in the food truck business.

If your food truck is serving alcohol, a great customer giveaway is a key chain bottle opener. These custom key chains can be printed with your logo or personal message for the local community to carry with them at all times. No matter where a person is going, they will need their keys, meaning your food truck advertisement will be going with them.

Whether your food truck specializes in Philly cheesesteaks, macaroons, or grits, no one will even know that unless you promote your business correctly. A recent poll stated that 23% of people surveyed follow a food truck in their area on social media. Twitter is the easiest way for you to connect with your community customers. So, if your truck is does not have an account, create one now! Then, hand out promotional products to let people know about it.

It takes a few months to build up a truly successful account so pass out promotional stickers to all your customers to help gain exposure. Print your logo on them with your Twitter address located on the bottom. These stickers can be put anywhere from cars to laptops on college campuses, giving your traveling truck maximum exposure.

You can even have Twitter contests. Use hashtags to get your business trending, give discounts to new followers or customers that share a picture of their lunch. Have fun with it! The more you enjoy promoting your business, the more enthusiastic the public will be to join in.

I’m sure food trucks remind some people of that bland hot dog cart on the sidewalk corner but, many food trucks today specialize in gourmet foods that make your mouth water by just reading the menu. Just take a look at the top 10 food trucks in New York City. They’re serving up all kinds of mouthwatering fare. Date-lime banana smoothies. Pickled mango chutney. Spicy feta dip. This is all great stuff that should be promoted.

When you’ve picked the perfect spot for the day, tweeted your followers your location, and prepped the food, the last thing to do is put your promotional pop-up poster board outside presenting the day’s menu and open for business.

Food is something that brings strangers together. It doesn’t matter what language you speak, people will connect over a great bite to eat and a fun environment. Always have music playing that will attract customers and make sure to never work without a smile. Create an atmosphere around the truck that gets people excited to come back, not only for your amazing creations, but for the unique service.


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Coffee Promotional Products That Will Perk Up Any Coffee Lover


If you want to hear about coffee promotional products, you’re in the right spot. But first, a quick back story.

Fourteen years ago this month (June), I married my best friend. I won’t bore you this time with the romantic tale, but I will tell you I tried to be the super wife in the beginning.

I would get up with my hubby at 4:45 every morning, fix a full breakfast, and make his lunch. I thought I was doing so well until after a few weeks in, he lovingly turned to me and said, “It might be best for our marriage if you stayed in bed.”

I pressed, “Is it my cooking?”

It wasn’t. (It’s awesome. Just ask our Minnesota crew.) I wasn’t a morning person then, and after 14 years, I’m still not.

graphic 1

Of course there are several solutions to the chronic anti-morning person, but none bigger than the $100 billion commodity coffee industry (second only to oil).

Oh coffee, that sweet nectar that brings me to life every morning.

Believe it or not, I am the only coffee drinker in the house. (My husband doesn’t eat chocolate either … the things you find out after you are married!) But my husband knows me well. He gave me one of my favorite anniversary presents a few years ago – a Keurig machine. (Yes, ladies, he’s a keeper.)

graphic 2

So what does all of this have to do with ePromos and promotional products? Well, with coffee being the second largest commodity market, there is a major opportunity to be in front of your customers.

One way to do this (that’s very near and dear to my heart) is the Tervis Tumbler. These great mugs can be decorated in so many creative ways, and they bring co-branding to a whole new level.

Since I am a Keurig fanatic, I’d like to introduce you to some of our newest products: the custom K-Cup and the K-Cup case.

custom Keurig cups

Your options are endless when it comes to marketing to coffee drinkers such as me. Disposable cups, coffee sleeves, endless mug choices and more.

What coffee item can you not live without? Share on ePromos’ Facebook page.

 

 

 


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Great Moscow Mule Recipe (And Where To Buy Those Copper Mugs!)


Moscow mule copper mug

It’s been said that the mug makes the mule. If you’re mixing up Moscow mules, there’s nothing like promotional copper mugs to keep the drink ice cold – and your logo front and center.

If you haven’t noticed, the Moscow mule is the cocktail du jour. It’s a snappy blend of vodka, ginger beer, and lime, and it’s always served in a copper mug. In fact, it’s that telltale mug that makes the drink so easy to spot.

Dale DeGroff, a master mixologist and one of the most revered cocktail historians around, has said that the drink was first served in a copper mug engraved with two mules kicking up their heels.

But why copper? The general consensus is that a copper mug keeps the cocktail much colder than a normal glass. If you’ve ever had a Moscow mule in anything other than a copper mug, you can likely confirm this.

A Look Back

The story behind the Moscow mule is an interesting one. In the 1940s, two distributors – one selling ginger beer and the other selling Smirnoff vodka – found themselves in a pinch. No one was buying their products. At the time, people much preferred gin and whiskey.

So the distributors, in what turned out to be a genius move, experimented with combining the vodka and ginger beer. They added some lime, and voila – the first Moscow mule was created.

While this is the classic version, there are many ways to mix up a Moscow mule. Some people like to add crushed mint first; others like to top it off with freshly grated ginger. And still others like to add a few drops of Angostura bitters to give the cocktail some color and aroma while not altering the flavor.

And then there’s the vodka. Smirnoff is the brand behind the drink, but Moscow mules can be enjoyed with any kind of vodka: Russian Standard, Grey Goose, Svedka, Square One, or Stoli are some great options to try.

You can also swap out the ginger beer for ginger ale (just spice it up with a little cardamom), or even rum for a totally different twist on the cocktail – it’s called a Dark and Stormy. If you like your drinks sweet, this is the way to go.

If you substitute the vodka for bourbon, it’s called a Kentucky mule. Opt for gin instead of vodka, and you have a Gin mule. It just depends what spirit you’re in the mood for.

Moscow mule printed copper mug

The Role Of The Mug

Back to the history behind the buzz. The tale goes that a third partner joined in. Needing to offload a surplus of copper mugs that wouldn’t sell, the trio brought their concoction and mugs to bartenders far and wide.

The cocktail and mugs were a hit, and the rest is history. The Moscow mule is credited with reviving the vodka industry in the U.S., tripling the sales of vodka in the 1950s.

Fast forward a few decades, and the simple, sweet cocktail has once again gone mainstream – and real connoisseurs know that it has to be served in a copper mug. A Collins glass (or any other glass) just won’t do. The mug, does, in fact, make the mule. The copper keeps it perfectly chilled, making it a must for this particular drink.

Clamoring For Copper

As the drink continues to surge in popularity once again, copper mugs have become a hot commodity at bars and restaurants. People can’t get enough of the copper mugs, and they’re starting to swipe them from right under bartenders’ noses.

Retailers can’t keep up with demand. At places like Crate & Barrel and Sur La Table, copper mugs are flying off shelves, and the stores have to scramble to keep them in stock.

So, what does this mean for marketers? Now’s the time to customize copper mugs for your brand.

There’s no better drinkware of the moment than promotional copper mugs. They’re trendy, people want them, and they’re a fantastic opportunity to put your logo in the limelight. Here are a few ways your company can use them:

Commemorative items

Copper mugs aren’t just incredibly popular this summer – they’re also incredibly versatile. They make great take-home items to memorialize any event, whether you’re hosting an awards night or a company picnic. Every time recipients reach for the mug at home, they’ll be reminded of the fun times they enjoyed at your event.

Corporate meetings and incentive trips

Are you getting the staff together for a big meeting this summer? What about treating team members to an incentive trip? Use copper mugs to celebrate the occasion. They’ll help employees bond (booze brings everyone together!), and when staffers are back home, the mugs serve as a fun souvenir of the trip.

Gift-with-purchase promotions

If you own a restaurant or bar, copper mugs are a golden gift-with-purchase opportunity. Free stuff makes people want to buy. Offer customers a free Moscow mule when they buy the mug. RaceTrac convenience stores are running a similar promotion this summer (only with soft drinks and frozen beverages, not alcohol.)

Customer service

You might be wondering how copper mugs can help you kick up your customer service, but they can. We recently came across a great customer service story on Hotwire. A reviewer mentioned that he tried to purchase copper mugs at the Four Seasons Las Vegas PRESS bar, and “all of a sudden,” they appeared in his room. Kudos to the Four Seasons for using these mugs to make the guest’s stay unforgettable.

No matter how you use them, coveted, on-trend products are great ingredients for an effective promotion to build your brand. If you want more ideas on developing a promotion using copper Moscow mule mugs, one of our Brand Consultants would be happy to help.

Click here for the best printed copper mug, and check out the recipe below to concoct your own Moscow mule.

Recipe: Moscow Mule Cocktail

3 oz. ginger beer
1 ½ oz. vodka
Fresh lime juice from half a lime

Fill your copper mug with crushed ice and pour the vodka over top. Give it a good squeeze of lime juice. Top with ginger beer and stir. Garnish with lime slice or fresh mint.

Are you a fan of Moscow mules? What do you think – does the mug make the mule?


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A Promotional Product That Takes The Cake


Here’s a promotional product that’s perfectly on-brand – The Ritz-Carlton’s new signature cake. Just like the brand itself, The Cake (as it’s so aptly called), is decadent and rich. Laced with hints of sweet citrus, if The Ritz-Carlton had a flavor, this would be it.

We’ve talked about why your brand should have a smell, but what about a taste?

For The Ritz-Carlton, taste is a natural brand extension. Guests’ senses are stimulated on every level – design, scent, lighting, music. When guests step foot in a Ritz-Carlton, it’s a distinct experience. People know what to expect from the Ritz-Carlton brand.

That’s why we love its newest promotional product. The Cake is right in line with the brand. It’s not a quick snack – it’s a flavorful dessert that’s meant to be savored and that was created to celebrate the brand’s heritage. It’s even topped with the iconic Ritz-Carlton lion logo.

So, how does a brand go about developing a signature dessert – or any kind of signature flavor? By looking to those who know the brand best: staff members.

The Ritz-Carlton’s Corporate Chef, Rainer Zinngrebe, called upon his pastry chefs from around the world to develop a recipe that’s undeniably true to the Ritz-Carlton brand. What he got was a chocolate-orange cake that has become the signature confection for the brand.

It doesn’t stop at The Cake itself – the packaging is so impressive that it won a design award. “I wanted something representative of the brand, as recognizable as a Tiffany box, so people would say, ‘I know that box,’” Zinngrebe said in a Conde Nast Traveler article.

The sleek, dark box opens completely so guests can serve the dessert right in its case and close it up if there are any leftovers. A satin ribbon handle is an elegant finishing touch – so Ritz-Carlton.

Promotional food gifts are always smart when you want to appeal to your customers’ senses in new ways. We love how Ritz-Carlton has taken it to the next level by developing a unique confection that’s beautifully and delectably on-brand.

If you could create a flavor for your brand or develop a signature food gift, what would it be?

promotional  box

custom food gift

promo food gift

custom box


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10 Promotional Food Gifts To Make Your Customers’ Mouths Water


People love promotional food gifts. It doesn’t matter if it’s a basket of fresh-baked cookies or a personalized tin of crunchy, salty pretzels, people stop what they’re doing to check it out. Food gets attention.

You can’t open a ribbon-adorned truffle box or crack into a container of gourmet popcorn and not want to taste a bite. Or four.

But food isn’t a great promotional gift just because it stands out or because it makes people’s taste buds dance.

There’s another reason it’s smart to put your marketing where their mouth is.

Fifty percent of recipients feel more favorable toward the advertiser after receiving a promotional food gift, according to ASI’s Global Advertising Specialties Impressions Study.

If you want to make a memorable impression, opt for palate-pleasing promos. ’Tis the season for snacking, and whatever edible gift you send your customers’ way, it goes a long way toward establishing goodwill. People are happy when they’re enjoying a tasty bite, and your brand can be associated with those positive feelings when you give food gifts.

Here’s a look at the top 10 promotional food gifts, and for more ideas, browse ePromos’ full collection of custom food.

promo popcorn

Your logo is prominently displayed on this Custom Popcorn Tin, which holds two gallons of fresh-popped popcorn in four flavors.

 

promotional snacks gift box

The Promotional Snacks Gift Box features a milk- or dark-chocolate centerpiece customized with your logo. The surrounding trays are filled with your choice of premium confections.

 

gourmet gift tower

Make a statement with the Gourmet Custom Gift Tower. It’s perfect to send to offices for co-workers to share. A burgundy ribbon foil-stamped with your logo is the finishing touch.

 

promotional cookie tin

Whether you opt for classic chocolate chip or a variety of flavors, you can’t go wrong giving your customers a Promotional Cookie Tin. The tins are reusable, so your logo sticks around.

 

promo chocolate squares

These Promo Chocolate Squares are a real attention-getter. Each chocolate cube is individually wrapped in foil featuring your custom design and then packed in a transparent acrylic box. A festive ribbon amps up the presentation.

 

truffle custom gift box

These Truffle Custom Gift Boxes make a big impact on a budget (they’re as low as $4.09 a box). Choose from an assortment of gourmet flavors such as dark chocolate champagne and milk chocolate amaretto. Want to go bigger? Opt for a four-piece or nine-piece truffle box.

 

party starter custom gift box

The Party Starter Custom Gift Box is packed with a mix of sweet and savory treats, plus a logo imprinted cutting board. It’s the ultimate foodie gift.

 

custom snack box with ribbon

This Custom Gold Snack Box is filled with your choice of snack – pretzels, peanuts, animal crackers, and the like – and tied off with a colorful imprinted ribbon.

 

personalized buttermints

Associate your brand with the melty, timeless flavor of buttermints. These Personalized Mints are individually wrapped, making them perfect for office candy dishes.

 

six-way variety tin

There’s a snack for everybody in the Six-Way Variety Custom Tin. It’s filled to the top with treats such as chocolate-covered pretzels and cheddar cheese popcorn, and it features your logo as a bold imprint on the lid and front.

 

 

 


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Custom Mugs: A Warm Addition To A Welcome Gift


Give out custom mugs, and people will pour in anything: coffee, tea, Baileys. Truvia, the sugar alternative, was also counting on people pouring in some of its all-natural, zero-calorie sweetener.

custom mug

The brand launched a clever campaign, Turning the Town Truvia, in which it asked fans to submit names of restaurants that should offer Truvia.

Not only would they have a chance at seeing the sweetener at their favorite restaurants—they’d also be in the running to win $5,000. Each nomination on the brand’s Facebook page was a chance to win the cash.

When a particular eatery received multiple nominations, Truvia sent a welcome gift containing campaign details, an 80-count box of Truvia sweetener, and our favorite, a custom mug.

What a smart promotion. Truvia engaged its biggest fans, and then sent a useful, relevant welcome gift directly to prospects. The custom mugs were a great touch. They invited restaurant owners to relax with a warm beverage, sweetened of course, with Truvia.

Everything was right there in the kit: the sweetener and a logo imprinted mug. All the owners needed to experience the clean, sweet flavor of Truvia was a hot drink.

Mark Brooks, Truvia’s global consumer products director, said that the goal of the campaign was to incentivize potential customers to understand how Truvia fits their own brands and why they should bring in the product.

As a result of the promotion, which ran for nearly three months and concluded in December, Truvia netted 35,000 leads and boosted Facebook fans by 25%. Sweet results indeed.

Promo know-how tip:

Always consider the recipients when creating a welcome gift. Well-chosen promotional products can be the highlight of the package, whether they’re for conference attendees, wedding guests or apartment residents. Our Promotions Specialists will help you select the right promo items.