SNEAK PEEK OF OUR GUIDE
Social media is today’s most influential networking tool. However, sometimes managing social media marketing can feel overwhelming and almost like a second job. There is so much to learn, and right when you feel like you’ve caught up, new trends and apps emerge.
That’s because social media platforms are advancing and growing every day. Platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and now Tik Tok can offer your restaurant promotional content that can help you build relationships one post at a time.
The beauty of social media is that with the right tools, it can act as free marketing, leading to more customers and more revenue. Social media forever changed the restaurant industry and will continue to do so.
That is why we’ve collected some of the latest social media tips & tricks to help guide you on this marketing journey.
Our Complete Guide for Restaurant Social Media Marketing covers key stats you need to know, content ideas to use on each platform, and tricks to make social media easier for you.
Here’s a sneak peek of some social media tips & trends we share in our new guide:
#Hashtags for Restaurants
Today, there are over 432 million #food hashtags on Instagram alone, growing daily. Social media platforms allow restaurants to interact and engage with diners and one way to do this is through the use of hashtags.
Hashtags enable restaurants to reach a larger audience with their social updates.
Here are some stats to prove it:
- Tweets with hashtags get twice the amount of engagement as those without them.
- 40% of tweets with hashtags get retweeted.
- Interactions are highest on Instagram on photos with more than 11 hashtags.
- Using 1 to 2 hashtags on Facebook leads to an average of 593 interactions per post.
Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook all use hashtags in their own unique way. The proper use of them can increase your social engagement and impressions.
Find the top 8 hashtags you should be using to market your restaurant in our Complete Guide for Restaurant Social Media Marketing.
Twitter Hashtag Tip
When using hashtags on Twitter, it’s best to incorporate them within your copy. For example, “It’s a piece of #cake.”
Instagram Hashtag Tip
Group your hashtags on Instagram as a comment on your photo or after & below your catchy caption.
Take a look at these two examples to the right that show this Instagram tip. You can see Pig & Fire BBQ separate their hashtags below their caption so it doesn’t interfere. Manna Kitchen puts their branded and food hashtags as a comment on their photo. Both of these options are a great way to include hashtags in your social media posts.
Make sure your hashtags are relevant to your industry, so your viewers don’t misinterpret them. Using irrelevant and excessive hashtags can bring negative attention to your restaurant, and even worse, decrease your engagement.
Twitter Tactics for Restaurants: How to Tweet Your Way to The Top
Twitter is nothing new to the restaurant industry. It’s one of the O.G. platforms that has stuck around, stayed true to its nature, and continues to grow.
So, how do you make the most out of the 280 characters you have to tweet?
- Always start your tweet with an engaging hook! And put your URL link in the context of your tweet, which increases your chances of getting retweeted by 26%.
- Try to use hashtags with 11 characters or more. #NationalWineDay for example.
- Restaurants need to use images. Tweets with images are 34% more likely to get retweeted. Plus, what’s better to look at than food?
- Tweet your customers right before they’re hungry! Post 30 minutes to an hour before peak meals, around 11 am and 4 pm, is perfect.
- Retweet content that is informative to your followers because when you help others, they will help you.
- Respond to your followers quickly. Twitter is a platform used for communication, and your guests expect a quick reply, especially when asking about promotions.
- Create contests to increase engagement with your followers and brand awareness to new ones. Make sure to include in the rules they must be following you!
- #TakeoutTuesday is huge on Twitter. Incorporate takeout specials on this platform to capture more business.
- Ask your followers to R.T. in return for being rewarded with a discount or deal. Tweets that have RT or Retweet get 12x higher retweet shares than those who don’t.
- Use your branded hashtags! Ours is #madmobile.
Foodies on Facebook
Consumers expect restaurants to have active Facebook pages with updated menus, hours, contact information, and more. There are currently over 2.8 billion worldwide Facebook users, ready and waiting to engage with your business. This is because people want to explore new tastes, and your restaurant has the power to do that.
Facebook is a beautiful tool for restaurants looking to display delicious photos of their chefs’ sumptuous meals and post special events.
Use the six tips below to optimize your Facebook marketing strategy, whether it’s organic or paid.
#1) Keep your posting strategy simple.
The easiest way to fail at social media is to never specify what you should be posting and why. By defining post categories that are always worth tossing on your wall, you can pull from those for inspiration. Do not get stuck in “but what should I post” land.
Here are some categories for your restaurant to use:
- Changes in hours or closures: Always post your holiday hours etc.!
- Specials: Did you whip up a breakfast taco with local seitan chorizo? Tell people about it.
- Food photos: This is obvious, but find the most photo-savvy person on your team and have them be in charge of taking casual Instagram & Facebook photos. And if you’ve never hired a professional photographer to take pictures for your website and socials, then it’s usually worth the investment.
- P.R: Any newspapers or T.V. stations that feature you are worth sharing.
- Repost customer stories: When people have a good experience at your restaurant, they’re going to talk about it. Repost their story or photo and credit them for an easy source of content.
- New chefs and employee stories: Transparency is in these days. Talk about your story and put a face to the food!
#2) Completely fill out your profile on all your social media platforms.
Social media platforms and search engines reward complete profiles. Every platform you’re on should have at least:
- Your address
- Your hours
- The type of food you serve
- Your phone number
- Delivery/takeout specifics
- Some description of your story and what makes your food unique
- Mention the immediate neighborhood you’re located in to help with local SEO
- A link or prompt to make a reservation
#3) You have to pay to play on Facebook.
Restaurants can get a lot done with organic posts, but don’t expect to get very far outside of your audience on Facebook these days without paying. Split your efforts by these two avenues.
View unpaid posts as a way to provide information to potential customers that find you and encourage previous ones to come back. Use paid advertising to bring brand new people to your restaurant.
#4) Never boost a post on Facebook.
Boosting is a less accurate way of advertising on Facebook. If you want to spend money, you should do it with more precision within the actual ad portal. This gives you a few advantages:
- You can use that same page post in various campaigns (i.e. using it for different restaurant locations).
- You can be more granular in your targeting.
- You can analyze the results better within the ad platform.
- You will gain valuable experience using the ad platform.
#5) Use localized retargeting to push for reviews and run special promotions.
By using geographic targeting on Facebook, you can set up a campaign that only targets your restaurant’s physical location. This is a super clever way to ask your customers what they think of your restaurant and prompt them to leave a review.
#6) Use offline events to analyze your Facebook advertising ROI.
Facebook has a fantastic feature called offline event tracking. This allows you to export customer information and tie it to your advertising. For example, suppose you ran a delivery campaign to offices around your neighborhood. In that case, you could export your delivery sales from that period and upload that information into a .csv on Facebook. It tells you exactly how much revenue your ads generated, and it asks: did this person see this ad before taking action? If so, add that specific order value to that ad campaign.
Once you nail down a strategy that brings in more customers to your restaurant, you can up the budget.
The goal of your social media marketing is to stand out on your guests’ feed. Your followers and foodies see back-to-back food content, and you want yours to draw them in.