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One of the most popular and effective social media tools you can use to market your restaurant would have to be Instagram. In fact, over 300 million people have active accounts on Instagram posting an average of 70 million photos per day! Jumping into a new social media platform can be daunting, but here are a few simple tips to help you on your way to becoming a brand to follow:
1. Take good pictures
Considering this is a photo-based tool, you would think this would be obvious, but you’d be surprised how many Instagram posts are blurry, unappealing, poorly lit or all of the above! Every time you take a picture, be conscious of simply photography rules like lighting (natural is best), composition and subject. Additionally, remember to take shots of happy staff members, specials on the chalkboard, fresh produce from the market or flowers for the dining room. Although your food is certainly the focus, a sprinkling of human and decorative elements are always enjoyed and appreciated.
2. Don’t be afraid to use filters
Though it seems to be a common practice to cover up the errors of a less than perfect shot, many of the Instagram filters can offer a touch of nostalgia or emotion to your post. Above all, be creative and mix it up! Don’t get stuck on one filter or using filters for every shot.
A necessary evil, hashtags are how Instagram (and other social media sites) organize content. Be sure to use hashtags that help users discover your posts like location (#nola #neworleans), cuisine type (#Mexican #Vietnamese), the name of your restaurant and more general identifiers like #restaurant and #dining. Other hashtags like #tbt or #tgif are also helpful to users.
4. Be color conscious
Studies have proven that colors can, in fact, influence a person’s desire to eat. For example, lots of red and orange can increase one’s appetite while blue does quite the opposite.
5. Post Regularly
While it may seem onerous at first, try to post daily, or at minimum three times per week. This will gradually build your presence on Instagram and followers will begin to anxiously await your next installment.