You might be thinking about starting a business and wondering, can I make a living as a hot dog vendor? Is it possible to live on hot dog profits? The short answer is YES. Read on…
As with any business or occupation, there are those, sometimes few, that make incredible incomes. They are those whom become the poster-children for their specific field or niche. Take real-estate investing for example. Thousands upon thousands jumped into real estate when the markets were booming. Late night exercise equipment infomercials were replaced with “get rich quick” real estate investing courses. Like weight loss infomercials depicting some happy successfully thin real-estate mogul.
Tom lost his job and in just 11 months we have purchased this, this and 2 of these – we're rich. I never would have believed it could be so easy.
Always accompanied by the ever so small print at the bottom of the screen : Results not typical…etc.
Hot Dog Vendor Business Niche
So what makes hot dog vending different, what makes a vendor any more likely to succeed? Lots! A hot dog vendor creates his own niche, he creates a niche at 5th and Main, a niche at the local bottling plant or at the city park. He's not limited to just those locations, but he or she is their own niche.
A vendor delivers steaming hot – hot dogs on a soft warm bun in which every bite releases a glorious taste sensation. Condiments and toppings are endless in variety and every vendor can set him or herself apart from the redundant mediocrity of most brick and mortar establishments creating again a more tailored and exclusive niche market.
(Yes! I'll read it to you… click below)
Hot Dog Business – Flexibility
From Japanese Fusion hot dogs to cheese dipped pulled pork covered dogs on stick – your options are only limited by your imagination and the friendlies at the health department. I stick to the tried and true; a hot dog, a bun, and the standard condiments; ketchup, mustard, mayo, relish, pickles, chili and cheese. But only because it works for me and it is what my customers enjoy.
Hot dog vendors can write their own checks. A bad location for a vendor doesn't spell disaster as would a bad real estate purchase. It happens to most all vendors, we pick a bad event, a bad location or a bad time at a particular location, but none of these spell disaster for a vendor. We hitch our wagon and roll to the next spot.
How Much Money Can You Make?
Vendors don't need thousands, we don't require droves of customers to make a huge income. We don't require closing agents, nor title work, nor lawyers, nor an abundance of luck. Luck never hurts but its absence will not determine a vendors successfulness. Vendors only need that 50, 60 or even 100 customers a day to make incredible incomes – 6 figure incomes!
Most of Americans, some 52% live at or below the poverty level, they have never seen $1000 dollar weekly paychecks. Most have never seen over $2,000 monthly. Vendors, depending on their drive, their personal budgets can make that and far more. Yes, yes, yes, there are vendors whom are perfectly satisfied with $100 dollars a day and there is nothing wrong with that. Yes, there are vendors whom have just begun and in the first months struggle to find the right location, suffer bad locations and make less than their desire. But – the vendors that are still making very modest incomes after a year are either lying (poor mouthing) or not motivated for more or else, why on earth would they continue?
This may piss a few of you off and I know there are always exceptions, but I enjoy knowing and speaking with 100's and maybe thousands of vendors. I hear the stories, I hear about the struggles and I also hear about the successes! The vendor after one year of vending will not be broke from vending, will not be bankrupt from vending, will not be at a loss. One who vends for a year will probably continue to vend for years to come. Not for the 401K, not because the job is easy, not because vending makes millions but because it works, because vendors can determine their own pay, they can seek that perfect location even if it requires months of trial and error all the while making a living.
I honestly don't know of any thing like it – however I am sure there exists other occupations that enjoy similar benefits but I do not need them. It is why the title of my course is called; “hot dogs saved my life“. They did! Yes, I struggled for a couple of weeks, but even on the worst days I made an hourly wage far exceeding the incomes of many educated professionals.
I do get calls and emails from those just starting out that tell of $30 and $60 dollar days. Inevitably there is always a solution. Usually it comes in the form of a new location, a different sign or sometimes a little more time.
Remember, most vendors don't work 40 hour work weeks. We enjoy a shorter work day. Even with preparatory work and clean up, we often are out no more than 5 to 6 hours.
What separates a hot dog vendor making $100,000 a year from one making $25,000? – Almost every time it's location. Location, location, location is key. “But I can't find a good location” might be something you worry about. Well, how many have you tried? hHve you read in my book where I share many locations, ones that often are never considered?
Sometimes it can be your appearance, your signs, your consistency. What is consistency? Well if you have a spot that doesn't have lots of walk by traffic and you are relying on pulling people off the road and you are there sporadically, you don't keep consistent hours, then you'll probably not find business all that appealing. You don't have to be there 7 days a week and 12 hours a day. Just find a schedule that works for you and work it. Consistency makes for consistent customers.
I have a customer in Arizona, in a small town of less than 10,000 people. She worried that sales would be very low. She would have busy days and then days that weren't worth the time to set up. She would call and inform me of her daily challenges and the successes. Over time we narrowed it down to the days it worked, the days that more people came. We also narrowed down the hours. This is why keeping even [post it note] type records of your daily sales and times is important. Eventually she had it figured out completely and purchased a second cart from the Hot Dog Cart Store, and now runs two carts in different parts of town.
Yes I could give you countless stories of success, I could even give you the weekly run down of complaints from those struggling or not yet prepared for the commitment, but how does that affect you? It doesn't.
I get calls from some that say, Ben – what about the economy? Well I did a video awhile back on Youtube called, “A Bad Economy is Good for Me“. In retrospect the title seems a little insensitive, but I was being honest. The economy lost me my million dollar farm, it destroyed my income, it put us in a dinky mobile home and wiped away those nice vehicles but that same bad and even worse economy is a driving force for those wanting a good deal at lunch time, those wanting something great tasting and inexpensive.
We hot dog vendors are unique, there is a charm and a sense of nostalgia for customers eating from a hot dog cart. The experience is intensified by those vendors who go above and beyond serving quality meats, fresh buns, supreme condiments and ingenious concoctions all atop a friendly smile and warm heart. We are the epitome of self made and self employed. We represent the values of never quit; take my job, take my retirement and I will succeed, I will not wait for work to find me, I will not sit idly by – but instead will create my own, I will support myself and others, I will – I will.
We are the unsuccessful furniture store owners, the displaced chiropractors, the contract-less contractors, the laid off auto worker, the downsized office staff, we are you, we are determined and we will succeed. AND SO CAN YOU!
Skeptical about whether you can really make a living selling hot dogs? I would be, too. Read some stories from real people who are making money selling hot dogs.