Social media platforms have changed the way we interact with other people. While they have their downsides, their upsides can’t be ignored. The simple sending of a tweet or Facebook post can reach thousands of people within seconds, and with that reach, a lot of positive can come.
When one man opened up a hot dog cart in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and didn’t get the customer base he hoped for, he was disappointed. However, when his daughter took to social media to get him help, something incredible happened…
Dewayne Callahan grew up in Chicago, Illinois, and at a young age, he developed a passion for food. Chicago is known for having great grub scene, and he made sure to explore it all.
Dewayne always dreamed of one day owning his own restaurant and being a professional chef. The thought of serving up delicious meals to hungry patrons lit a fire in his belly, but unfortunately, the opportunity never presented itself.
Dewayne eventually moved to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, to start a family. The scene was very different from the vibrant energy that ran through Chicago restaurants, but Dewayne made the best of the situation.
Dewayne worked as a radiation therapist, which paid the bills while his family grew, but he never lost his passion for cooking. He wanted to think of an affordable way to start a small business where he could cook for people.
Dewayne knew that food trucks were becoming extremely popular spots to grab a quick, delicious meal. He didn’t have the money for an entire truck, but he did have the money for something else…
It was a hot dog cart! Dewayne had fond memories of eating hot dogs as a kid, and they were one of his favorite foods to cook. But, would the people of Oklahoma City take to his endeavor?
Dewayne enlisted the help of his daughter to make the cart look welcoming. He wanted to make sure everything, down to the colors of the menu, was perfect.
Dewayne knew he would have to bring the amazing flavors of those windy city wieners, like the mac-and-cheese dog, to Oklahoma. He got all his ingredients together, headed out to an empty lot, and kept his fingers crossed.
Dewayne posted up in a back corner of a lot and waited. He was confident that if people tried his hot dogs, they’d almost certainly spread the word. Unfortunately, business was not booming.
Even though they weren’t serving nearly as many customers as they had hoped for, Dewayne stayed positive. He knew if he kept a positive attitude, things might turn a corner.
For the next few weekends, Dewayne returned to the same spot, but sales weren’t increasing by any substantial margin. Then, his daughter, Maddi, had a brilliant idea…
The 16 year old was a frequent user of social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook. She knew the kind reach these outlets had, and she was hoping maybe she could use them to her advantage.
Maddi heard about a gild named Jackie Garza whose father owned a family-run bakery in Houston, Texas. Jackie used Twitter to help reignite business just before her father closed its doors. Maybe Maddi could do the same thing…
The next day, Maddi sent out a tweet to all her followers. She only had 200 of them, but if they reached out to their followers and so on, potentially thousands of people would know about her dad’s efforts.
Within days, her tweet had received over 200,000 retweets and likes combined. When Dewayne opened up his cart a few days after the tweet went live, he had a long line of hungry people waiting!
People just couldn’t get enough of Dewayne’s hot dogs. Most of the Oklahoma City residents never had a Chicago-style dog before, and as soon as they took one bite, they were hooked!
Dewayne was blown away at the support he received from one simple tweet. He was no social media guru, but he was sure glad Maddi took the reigns!
We know that Dewayne can serve up a mean Chicago-style dog, but every cook has their own idea about what makes their food perfect. In Dewayne’s opinion, what’s the secret to a great hot dog?
Obviously, the quality of meat is number one. But he says it’s also very important that the hot dogs you buy have a natural casing. Once boiled, the casing gives that extra snap to the dog releasing the rush of flavor.
Dewayne Callahan now plans on eventually opening a restaurant and making his childhood dream a reality. Thanks to Maddi and Twitter, Oklahoma residents now know the joys of biting into a Chicago hot dog!
The instant connection we have to thousands of people via social media does have its downsides when used improperly, but this is a great example of the good it can do!
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