Nowadays, people love taking photos of the food they’re about to eat and it’s like a necessity most especially if they’re building an account that is geared towards food niche. Amazing food plating or food presentation together with perfect angle in capturing a photo of it is very compelling and once posted to Instagram, it becomes even more pleasing to the viewers. This only makes the restaurant industries realize that social media is also a perfect place to market their products at a lower cost or no cost at all compared to those paid advertising on TV and the good thing about this marketing technique is that they are able to engage with their customers, they can promote their new menus and gain more followers.
There are the 9 ways on how to use Instagram to grow your followers and increase your sales consistently.
Make sure your Instagram account is a Business Profile
Instagram Business Account lets you get access to advanced features like generating the insights about your followers and posts and also, the account would look more professional. If your account is setup as a business profile, it also increases the chance that your posts are seen in your follower’s feeds. It also gives access to your customers to directly contact you through Instagram Direct Messaging. Moreover, growing organic Instagram needs time and afford. Based on my research, it’s been proven that some new restaurant around the world tries to buy Instagram account. There are some foodie influencers with thousands of followers they put their pages on sale on platforms such as social tradia, and that’s how some businesses they get their Instagram page from influencers.
Cross-Promoting your Instagram Account
Apart from Instagram, we also have some other popular Social Media sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.. We know that some users may have not followed you on Instagram, but they may have followed you on the other social media sites. By cross-promoting your Instagram accounts through these other sites, there is a greater chance for your Instagram account to be exposed to more users, increase your profile views and gain more followers.
You can overlap your Instagram account to your other social media accounts and you can share your Instagram posts on your Facebook and Twitter accounts. There is an amazing easy way to add an Instagram photo or video to articles or websites and this is through Embedding. This will let you create a post code and when you paste it to your other social media accounts and if your clients click on it, they’ll be redirected to your Instagram page.
Make use of the Video feature
Instagram provided its users two free tools that give opportunities when it comes to their social media marketing. Instagram Stories – just like SnapChat, this allows the users to post a photo or a video that will be available to view within 24 hours. Its advantage to online or social media marketing to restaurants and bars industry is that, for us to be able to be seen by a wider audience, we can add live links and mention our followers, tag other Instagram accounts, and also, add our location and hashtags.
Instagram Live – this feature also helps us grow our brand. This helps us get engaged to our audiences is a pleasant and friendly way. Live video is timely and synergetic, can be used in any events we have in our business, also, if we want to let our customers know how a new dish or drink is prepared, we can show it to them using Instagram Live. The good thing in this feature is that, we will be able to know who are viewing us and be able to get engaged with our viewer’s right there.
Be engaged with your customers
Build connection and get engaged with people. One of the best ways to get people talking is to post a picture and put a caption that is in a form of a question and ask what they can say about your post. You can also ask for their ideas on what to prepare next or run a contest about a new dish name and get more audiences by letting them tag someone they want to share their prices.
Know more about Re-Gramming
Re-gramming on Instagram can be magnificent to your marketing strategy. This technique helps you in promoting branded, user-generated contents. As a customer, it is indeed heartwarming to see your post being highlighted by the restaurant’s Instagram page and this builds your brand loyalty as well; and of course, this is a great help when it comes to boosting the engagement on your account.
Here’s one way of how to do re-gramming. Using your geotag of hashtag, find great photos of your restaurant and once you’ve found one, you cam manually Regram it. Take a screenshot of that image and save it to your phone; crop and retain only the image then post it to your Instagram page. Don’t forget to credit the one who posted that specific image you re-grammed.
Another way is to use the external re-gramming app. If you’re looking for a free app, you can use Re-post for Instagram app and this links directly to your Instagram account and this also allows video Regramming.
To increase your search results, make a hashtag for your business and use it in every post you add to your account. You can also encourage your customers to use your hashtag whenever they post something about your restaurant, or food, or drinks, or the place itself.
Wisely find hashtags that will help you get serious organic views, look for those hashtags that will not bury your post in other millions of posts that hashtag have. It will help you generate more impressions if you use hashtags specified by location, this way, you will be seen by people in your area rather than those hashtags that are used by people anywhere in the world who’s not having any plans of visiting your restaurant. Remember: a post can get much better engagement if it is using a good, relevant hashtag than those without any hashtags used.
Introduce your new dishes and drinks
Post photos of your new menu items and introduce them to your customers. Encourage your regular customers, as well as new customers, to try these new dishes.
Have your customers join in the process? For example, you are trying a new pizza topping or making a whole new different dish, ask you customers as to what they can suggest to be the name of that dish! Letting them join in would give a great impact when it comes to the engagement of your Instagram page. Choose a winner and as the price, reward them to try the new dish for free.
Encourage customers to share posts
Encourage your customers to take the best photo of their food and share it to their Instagram account and ask them to tag you restaurant page to their post, use your business’ hashtag and geotag. One way to encourage your customers to share posts is to run a contest of who has the best of all bests post and offer great prices to the winners.
Get a Food Blogger to partner
It’s great if you can find a food blogger with large following and let them help you by posting about your restaurant, and get the benefits of having the chance to get exposed to Instagram users most especially, gain more targeted audiences. Food Bloggers are easy to convince with and are not asking for too much in return of their services, so it’s all up to you whether you pay them that much or exchange their services with your best-selling dish.