Have you had a struggle understanding how to use Instagram for your restaurant? I must admit I wasn’t sold on the platform until about 6 months ago when I saw how engaged my followers had become with my posts. My account grew quickly as I learned how to use Instagram and master a hashtag strategy.
Instagram offers the opportunity to target your followers and find new one with delicious images and promote what is new and exciting at your restaurant one photo at a time.
I now love Instagram for my consulting business and my restaurant too. Here are a few tips how to use Instagram to grow your restaurants following.
Leverage your profile section
Let’s begin with the profile section of your account. Instagram is a fun and visual and is the one platform that lots of emoji’s are acceptable.
Tell a story about your restaurant or bar and what you have to offer in your bio. Showcase a awesome special, favorite cocktail, or even an upcoming event.
Your Instagram profile is the only place on where you can put a clickable link. Use this to promote a specific call-to-action. For example if you have a giveaway, coupon, event registration, e-book or just a link to your website.
You may change this as often as you like. For a successful Instagram campaign you must leverage this area of your profile.
Here are example two examples of Instagram account profiles that I have created.
Use Hashtags and Geo-Tagging
Hashtags and geo-tagging are a way for people to search for posts based on subject and location. Create a relevant hashtag for your restaurant and use it everywhere.
- Publicize your restaurants hashtag on your website, blog posts, and social media pages.
- Encourage diners to use your hashtag when they share restaurant photos.
- Print the hashtag on your menu as a reminder with a note how to use it.
- Add your location to all your Instagram posts
- In the post description add location tags. For example my restaurant is in the Lehigh Valley PA so I would add #LehighValley #Bethlehem #Easton #Allentown…
- Search competitors posts and see what hashtags they are using.
Post on a regular basis
Instagram, like every social platform, you must post on consistent basis to realize success.
Inspirational quotes and images of food are extremely popular but consider sharing photos of your customers and staff too.
You may event post 15 second video on Instagram. When you combine beautiful images with a solid hashtag strategy your following will grow.
Promote your Instagram account on your other social platforms
Cross promoting your social accounts is an great way to grow your following. Create an image that will encourage your Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest fans to follow you on Instagram too.
This image I used for Sagra Bistro helped grow their following by 30% in 3 days after its release. I posted this image to Facebook and Twitter as well as Instagram.
These simple #Instatips and strategies have performed very well for my restaurant and consulting business. Use them to cross promote and grow your #Instafollowers.
So give Instagram a try..next you need to Snap! Snapchat that is.