People in the New Brunswick, NJ area are no strangers to the Cheezen gourmet grilled cheese food truck. The eye-catching vehicle, with its illustrated gooey cheese and the wide-smiled mascot, is hard to miss. And even though the company has created quite a name for itself, owner John Gentile knew that there was more that could be done.
How it all began
“It all started with making dinner for my kids,” says Cheezen owner John Gentile. “And then it hit me! I have fifteen years of food service experience. And I’ve always loved food trucks. I knew I could give people great food. Food that reminds us of when we were kids.”
So in October of 2014 Cheezen began with a small, 10-foot trailer. “Now we have two trucks, a trailer, and a store front in New Brunswick attached to the iconic Olde Queens Tavern,” says Gentile.
“Some days are rough and they can get long,” he says. “But then I see our customers line up for our food, and take pictures of it. And then they do the happy food dance because they feel like a kid again.”
Gentile noticed more and more people snapping pics of the grilled cheeses and he knew he needed to jump on that to push his brand even further. He realized the need to “make a presence in the market,” as he puts it. Custom printed food tissue made sense as an economical way to get the company’s name in each and every picture his customers posted on social media.
“We always hear potential customers asking people who just purchased a grilled cheese from us, ‘Hey, where did you get that?’ So with the branded basket liners, there is no question about where to go!”
In addition to getting the company name out there, Gentile put the Cheezen logo on the tissue to get a leg up on the competition – of which there is no shortage. “In order to be above the rest,” explains Gentile, “you need to make a presence at events. You can see hundreds of people walking around with our product in a customized package, rather than a generic red and white food tray.”
When asked if he sees the printed tissue having an effect on his business, Gentile responds, “Absolutely! I try to ask all my customers how they heard of us. They’ll tell me that they saw me at this event or that location. I think we have a better presentation of product and they can see that we put more effort into the delivery of what we’re making.”
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