Refresh your Feed: Social Media Guide for Restaurants

 Social media plays a significant role in today’s hospitality landscape. Savvy owners use it to promote their business, engage customers and most importantly, get them in the door. The numbers don’t lie, and we can see why social platforms have become an extension of restaurants: 

  • 96% of guests say they’re likely to check out a restaurant after seeing it on social media 

But managing social media is a tall order. From creating your brand to battling the ever-shifting algorithms, it takes real effort to stand out in the endlessly mouthwatering #foodinspo inspired feeds. To help your establishment succeed in the competitive world of restaurant social media, we’ve come up with a quick guide to help you keep your feed fresh and interesting.  

Social media best practices for restaurants 

Create and stay consistent with your brand 

Social media branding is a surefire way to convey your food philosophy to customers. This comes across in varying looks, colours, styles and voices, depending on your establishment’s nature, location and target audiences. Whether you’re a trendy cocktail bar using pops of colours or a time-honoured family restaurant that sticks with heartwarming quotes, ensuring that your postings are in line with your restaurant’s branding will help you keep your social presence genuine and memorable. 

Always use high quality imagery 

60% of consumers say they are more likely to consider a business when the search results come with quality images. In the sea of food photos – over 520+ million that include the hashtag #food! – stunning visuals will catch the eye, evoke cravings, and ultimately drive more traffic through your doors. Great food makes for great photos; so lean into your best-looking dishes and ensure the photo quality is up to par.  

Prioritise customer engagement 

To extend your restaurant experience beyond the brick and mortar, create engaging content that includes your followers! Social media offers an incredible avenue to interact with guests, you just have to ask – post about a promotion that guests can redeem by commenting or get customers to share their favourite dishes at your restaurant online for a chance to win a giveaway. Social engagement also gets you on top of the algorithm, giving you a better chance at discoverability.  

Keep your content feed fresh  

The average adult spends more than an hour a day on social media, so it’s important to keep things interesting. Refreshing your feed with new ideas not only helps loyal customers find a new reason to make a reservation, it also increases your chances of getting discovered by new guests. Customers like to be updated, so post content such as seasonal menus, chef specials, promotions, special events and anything newsworthy on the table. 

Social media ideas and examples for restaurants 

We all know that customers visit your restaurant to experience the delicious food, but they’re also interested in what makes your restaurant unique. Beyond using social media to promote your dishes and menus, use these ideas to showcase your restaurant in a different light. 

1. Tell your story 

Most restaurants have a great story of how they came to be. Use videos and photos to share the story across your social media channels. Let people know how you came to be, it’s an excellent way to show people what dining at your restaurant – and interacting with you and your team – will be like. Telling your story and shedding light on the industry is one way to ensure you come across as authentic and relatable.   

2. Behind the scenes 

People are curious by nature – share a sneak peek of what happens behind the counter at your restaurant. Capture some snips of your chef creating a signature dish, handy food prep tips, your barista creating latte art or your bartender mixing the perfect martini. Don’t over-complicate it, keeping your social persona real and unedited is a quality that today’s customers appreciate in a world of filters and AI generated content. 

3. Encourage the conversation 

Social media is the perfect way to engage with your customers. Encourage them to leave a review, share their dining experience online, post pictures of their food and ask questions. Whatever you do… don’t leave your guests hanging! Positive or negative, it’s important that you respond to reviews and inquiries. If you get this right, it’s a fantastic way to build rapport with your customers. 

 4. Highlight your employees 

Chances are, working in hospitality; you’ve got a few extraverts in your team. Use it as an opportunity to profile a team member every month on your socials. Let your customers experience a ‘day in the life’ of your chef, servers, bartender, or barista. It makes for engaging video content and allows your customers to experience your restaurant’s philosophy from the ground.

5. Show customers how 

One often overlooked aspect of social media marketing is education. Whether you’ve built a massive following or are just starting out with a few users, your followers will appreciate the back pocket tips when it comes to dining at your restaurant. Think about giving directions to find your off-the-beaten road locale or a step-by-step video on how to make a booking via your online restaurant reservation system.    

6. Share real-time restaurant updates 

Real-time marketing has become the hot topic in hospitality. In the age of YouTube Shorts, Instagram Stories and TikTok, we are accustomed to instant short-form content that keeps us up to date with everything by the minute. Sharing social updates around limited-time promotions, special events and seasonal menu items as they become available is a great way to encourage people to book a table immediately. 

Harness the power of smart marketing to maximise covers

The longer you work on your restaurant’s social media, the more you’ll start to see what resonates with your online audience. Consistency is also a key ingredient in working the algorithm, so post as often as you can.  

Social media engagement is a long-term game, but there are always other ways to complement your marketing efforts and maximise covers.  

Book a demo today to learn more about how Now Book It helps restaurants drive reservations and repeat visits.  

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