How can there be a business opportunity that involves popcorn machines? Surely every movie theater in North America already has a popcorn machine? Yes, we agree. Long before the residential version of the hot air popper hit the market, theater management companies had contracts in place with suppliers of corn, butter, salt and kettle poppers. Our goal is to explore other successful venues for popcorn machines.
Think of all the places people like to have a snack. Basically anywhere we sit, lounge, watch, wait, walk, peruse, window shop or ride. Obviously movies and sporting events are already synonymous with bags of freshly popped corn. We have all been to a hockey or baseball game and munched our way through a tub of buttery over salted popcorn, and then washed it down with an ice cold carbonated beverage. Put those occasions aside and think of other venues where snacks are either eaten or sold. How about the carnival or fun fair?
Popcorn is usually sold somewhere. If your local summer fair doesn’t sell tubs or bags of popcorn – there is an opportunity right there. Now what about animal shows such as dogs or livestock? Some people spend hours walking around or watching the judging. Popcorn snacks would probably be welcome. Track meets for school age children often take place in May and June, during breaks the athletes would love a healthy snack like popcorn. The outdoor community pool and play park would be another great venue for a popcorn vendor. Lots of kids, lots of parents – lots of popcorn sales! How about the local beach? During the summer months a popcorn vendor at the lake or beach could do quite well.
Any educational facility could be a fabulous opportunity for popcorn sales; either at school events such as a fun day, career day, or in the cafeteria on a daily basis. School boards are pushing healthy snacking for kids and popcorn falls under the healthy category. Recreation centers with after school care or teen clubs can accommodate popcorn machines quite easily. Post-secondary institutions would also be a great place for popcorn vending. In the cafeteria, at concession stands, at the concert hall or theater on campus, even the dormitories!
Adults love popcorn just as much as kids, and where can we find adults – in the workplace. Picture an office building or complex with a popcorn vendor that shows up right around coffee time. The intoxicating aroma of fresh popcorn wafts through the courtyard or around the ventilation system, calling popcorn lovers to your vendor! The same affect can be achieved in break rooms or areas at factories, job sites, hospital cafeterias, malls, big box stores, supermarkets, nature parks and outdoor markets.
Other places to consider are those that already sell snacks and drinks to the public. The corner store that has hot dogs for under a dollar would probably go through lots of corn in the average day, especially if located close to a school. What about movie rental stores? Shoppers are already in the movie mood, why not fulfill the whole experience by offering freshly popped corn? Even bars and clubs would be a great place for a popcorn machine.
Patrons are drinking sweet drinks, dancing, talking, socializing and may crave a salty snack. Popcorn is a refreshingly new idea. And don’t forget about those billiard halls and bowling alleys. The list of recreational places for popcorn vending can go on and on. It just takes a little brainstorming, perhaps even driving around the area so that no opportunity is missed.