Restaurant Instagram marketing is a valuable marketing asset used by small businesses all the way up to major corporations. There are some great benefits to using Instagram such as creating a space to keep the conversation going with your customers before, during, and after they leave your restaurant. There is also a huge plus and that is that much of the advertising on all social media platforms can be free.
Here is a checklist to get your Restaurant Instagram marketing going.
1. Post Great Images That Match Your Restaurant
If you run a barbecue spot you probably wouldn’t want to post pics of salads and vegetables. Now, that is not to say don’t post salads, but the idea here is to keep your posting on brand and target. Keep your look streamline with photos from inside the restaurant or other photos that match your restaurants aesthetic.
Photo Captions should also be memorable and funny or elegant depending on the type of establishment you run. Images of happy customers is also a great idea no matter what sort of restaurant you own.
Remember some important photography aspects to utilize when performing restaurant Instagram marketing:
- Instagram filters
- more than just food
- rule of thirds
2. Use Hashtags
Hashtags, or posting in your description things in this format such as “#barbecue”, or “#italianfinedining” make your posts searchable. People who do not know your restaurant or who have never been there before can find the posts you’ve uploaded.
This is great for building brand recognition on a local, national, and international level. People who follow or search “#kansascitybarbq” for example can see loads of images with that specific hashtag. They may want to come visit when in town.
3. Make Your Restaurants Aesthetic and Food Instagram Friendly
People tend to post things that they enjoy and that look good in a photo. If your restaurant has some noticeably outdated or damaged areas, this can take away from your Instagram worthiness. The food will really be the star here so make sure dishes are presented to patrons so that they look great. This not only adds to the value restaurant goers perceive from their meal but it also makes them Instagram worthy. Friends of these individuals will see the quality of the food and want to come themselves to try it out.
4. Get Involved With Followers and Give Incentives
More than just posting images with a description, restaurant Instagram marketing allows you to get people involved and to start and keep a conversation going. You could create some posts that ask for suggestions from customers like, “what should the special be next week?” or “who thinks free beer with an entrée is a good idea?”. You can also create posts that have blanks and ask followers to fill in the blanks, such as, “The best #pizzatopping is?”.
For incentives, hold a best photo contest of the neighborhood your restaurant is in or the best photo of your food, and then have staff decide. Award that user a freebie like free appetizer or free drink.
5. Connect Instagram With Twitter, Facebook, and Other Platforms
Many Instagram users are also active on twitter and Facebook. Be sure to keep Instagram descriptions under the twitter limit of 280 characters or they won’t post.
Add your Instagram link to your website and information on the other platforms. Even add your Instagram name somewhere in the restaurant if your restaurant isn’t formal.
In restaurant Instagram marketing, it is a good idea to also use the Instagram embed tool to embed your posts on your website or blog directly. This makes your site look modern and connects people to your social media page from your website directly.
6. Use More Than Just Photos
Restaurant Instagram marketing also allows you to post videos and stories (short seconds of video or photos that will be automatically deleted). This can give some balance to your profile and increase user interaction as you are offering more different content. Things like a toast or some friends singing happy birthday or even someone opening a wine bottle make for great Instagram videos.
7. Instagram Is Free
It is completely free to set up an Instagram account and start posting photos and videos on it. There are paid features some businesses will choose to use, but that can be considered later down the road. For the beginning start posting photos and make your restaurant goers aware you have an account and to follow you for updates, sales, specials, and event schedule. This is a great free marketing tool that is growing in popularity by the day.
Today there are so many methods to marketing a restaurant business. Make sure your restaurant Instagram marketing utilizes all of them to get the greatest reach and the widest range of patrons from all walks of life through the web. Take advantage of the free tools available to you as you know from being a restaurant owner that keeping costs as low as possible is a must.