Location, location, location: Part I

Location, location, location: Part I

Every business depending on street traffic flow should have some kind of location strategy. We called Andy Waugh at the The Wild Game Co in London to let him guide us through some of the important aspects of location.

After five years of serving delicious game meat to Londoners, Scottish brand The Wild Game Co finally has settled down on 65 Great Titchfield Street with the new restaurant Mac & Wild. But it all started as a market stall.

− At first we had a refrigerated stall at Broadway market, says founder Andy Waugh. Then we started selling hot food at the market on Whitecross street and eventually tried another central market that didn’t work out. After that, we started doing pop-ups in central and east London.

This was long before the hipster food trucks of today. Andy and his colleagues did events, festivals, guest appearances at other restaurants, took over pub kitchens and used coffee shops after they closed for the day.

The Wild Game Co at Charlotte Street
The Wild Game Co at Charlotte Street

− It’s a lot of work, but I definitely think we’ll see more of that cost-efficient way of doing things. There are so many incredible food trucks nowadays serving great food from all over the world. Social media becomes your shop window, and we could work a lot with PR since we always had a new menu and a new location or collaboration. We have also gathered thousands of e-mail addresses over the years from our different locations and settings.

Also, we have three or four other great restaurants in the neighborhood. We can benefit from each other by creating a hub.

Finding a restaurant venue in a city like London is a huge investment, and according to Andy Waugh, rent and traffic flows are crucial.

Pop-up at Whitecross Market
Pop-up restaurant at Whitecross Market

− For me, the rent was my main issue. It was all about finding the right deal. Secondly, there has to be traffic, especially if you’re not very well-known. The place we found now is only a few minutes from our old place at Charlotte Street, so we can keep the same customers. BBC has 6,000 employees in the area, and there are a lot of other creative industries here. Oxford Circus is only five minutes away. Also, we have three or four other great restaurants in the neighborhood. We can benefit from each other by creating a hub.

Tip of the day:

  • Take some time to think about your location strategy.
  • Are there any local competitors you can collaborate with in order to strengthen the area for everyone?
  • Can you think of other locations where you could experiment with a mobile concept to reach new audiences?