The Complete Guide To Social Media Marketing For Restaurants

Restaurant customer taking a picture of food with mobile phone

Social media has changed the face of marketing for the restaurant business. Restauranteurs no longer are dependent on the traditional word-of-mouth marketing even though it is the easiest and the cheapest form of marketing. Social media marketing for restaurants has taken over, and why not? Ninety-five percent of adults aged 18-34 years are most likely to follow a brand through social networking.

The success of any restaurant business depends on how well they implem

1. Social Media Marketing For Restaurants: The Complete Guide To Getting It Right!

Social media marketing for restaurants enables you to engage and interact with your existing customers and followers and also allows you to widen your reach by running sponsored ads.

Running your restaurant ads on social media would help you attract the desired audience and also builds a strong online presence of your restaurant brand.

Social media marketing for restaurants gives the business the liberty of targeting the desired audience, track the ad performance and monitor the conversions.

2. Why Is Social Media Marketing Important For Restaurants?

Social media is the new word of mouth. It is how consumers promote products and services to their friends, family, and — thanks to social media’s connection — strangers. You should be on social media if you care about what people say about your business and know how important it is for people to talk about it.

Using social media has numerous advantages for restaurants. Here are a few of the most important:

  • Instant updates: One of the quickest methods to keep clients informed about your restaurant is through social media. You can share any news or information you like — opening hours, contact information, menu updates, daily specials, temporary holiday hours, one-time events, promotions, and so on. 
  • Visual marketing: Instagram, in particular, is great for visual marketing, and the trend of ‘foodstagramming’ shows no signs of abating. Fill your social media with appealing photographs of delectable cuisine. Make it appealing by capturing the moment the yolk of a perfectly poached egg breaks, displaying the glossy shine of a warm chocolate sauce, and allowing melted cheese to trickle seductively down the sides of your burgers. There’s a reason why the hashtag #foodporn has 282 million posts. 
  • Understand your customer experience: Social media’s food culture encourages users to post pictures and reviews about their restaurant experiences. This can provide you with easy insights into how your customer experience and highlighting small changes you can make to improve that experience. 
  • Content created by users: Those photos and reviews we mentioned earlier? These are solid gold. They have a high level of trust because your company did not establish them. Sharing these favorable posts on your page might help you attract new consumers and increase brand advocacy.

The success of any restaurant business depends on how well they implement their marketing strategy; therefore we have highlighted some of the social media platforms you can run your restaurant ads at.

3. Top Social Media Platforms for Marketing Your Restaurant

3.1. Facebook

Learn how to utilize Facebook for social media marketing for your restaurant

Facebook is one of the most influential social media platforms. According to a survey, Seventy-two percent of people have used Facebook to decide what restaurant to eat at. You can only imagine the kind of impact Facebook marketing could have on your restaurant sales.

Facebook is an outstanding platform for building brand awareness. It allows you to share content that lets your patrons know about any upcoming event, offers or special discounts.

Videos show a great result in terms of audience engagement on Facebook. You can post videos snippets of the recent event organized at your restaurant, run promotional videos to create brand awareness, or even how your chef prepares a particular item.

No two restaurant businesses are alike and Facebook understands that! You can determine a fixed goal that will help you reach out to the right audience.  

What you need to start for creating Facebook ads:

  • Your business goal– It is the reason why you’re running the ads, which would be for generating sales for a restaurant business.
  • An understanding of who you want to reach– This will help you Facebook in showing your ads to the apt customer base.
  • A daily or lifetime budget for your ad– This is the amount you are willing to spend on Facebook to run your restaurant ads.
  • Photos or videos to feature in your ad– Ensure you add high-quality videos and photos.

Social media marketing for restaurants via Facebook is both profitable and interactive. Learn how to utilize Facebook for social media marketing for restaurants here. 

3.2. Instagram

Read how you can further run use Instagram for social media marketing for restaurants.

In recent years Instagram has flourished as one of the most popular social media platforms for advertising. Its interactive and user-friendly interface makes it more desirable among the millennials. Therefore, it is imperative for a restauranteur to pay a lot of attention and thought into curating the best restaurant ads for Instagram. Research has shown that thirty percent of people will avoid a restaurant if their Instagram presence is not good.

As a restaurant owner, you know how important it is to entice your customers and Instagram lets you do that, it helps you put your best “food” forward and interact with your customers in the most authentic way.

Food bloggers and micro influencers are popular on Instagram and you should be leveraging their audience to increase your brand presence.

Additionally, running sponsored ads on Instagram is also a great way to increase the reach of your business. For advertising on Instagram, you are required to have a business account.

There are different formats of Instagram ads to choose from:
  • Photo Ads: They allow you to tell the story of your restaurant along with compelling pictures. You can target the desired audience and Instagram would show your ads only to them. They are also supported by call-to-action buttons like Book now, Call now, Contact us, Get directions, etc.
  • Video Ads: There is no denying that videos ads are more capturing than pictures. They make it easier for your audience to recall your brand. Video ads can be up to 60 seconds. They are also supported with a call-to-action button similar to picture ads.
  • Carousel Ads: These ads let your customers swipe through a series of images or videos, with a call-to-action button to connect them directly to your website. They offer the creative space to tell a longer story about your restaurant.
  • Stories Ads: These Ads are full-screen ads that appear to users between Stories. They’re the ideal format for sharing limited-time offers and promotions since they expire after 24 hours. The call-to-action takes the form of a swipe-up feature that takes audiences directly to your restaurant’s website.

Instagram is a great tool for promoting your restaurant business on social media. Make use of the user-friendly interface, the hashtag and story features available on Instagram and see your restaurant business flourish.

Read how you can further run use Instagram for social media marketing for restaurants.

3.3. Snapchat

 how to use Snapchat for restaurant marketing

Snapchat might be a new player in the social media arena, but it sure is impactful. It has 180 million active users! It has several business-related applications for small as well as large restaurants.

Once you have created an account on Snapchat it is now time to make some friends who can see what you are posting. You can get your unique code and place it all around your restaurant for people to quickly add you are their friend. You can also post this code on your other social media accounts like Facebook, Instagram, etc. or on your website. This will increase your reach.

You can use this platform for the following purposes:

  • To share discount coupons: This can be a great motivation to get customers to follow your account. Once they add you as a friend, send them a snap of discount coupons. More patrons will want to follow you and it also creates a sense of exclusivity when they receive a snap from you.
  • Snap your food: Nothing is more enticing than giving your customers a visual treat. Send snaps of your food freshly prepared and leaving the kitchen. You will make your customers hungry just by making them look at the food pictures of videos.
  • Customer takeover: This is somewhat similar to influencer marketing but with a twist. You can let your customers handle your account for a day. Let them take over and present a new perspective to your followers.
  • Create a geo-filter: When you take a photo and start swiping you’ll notice there are special logos that appear over your photo. If your location settings are on, it also displays your location. It lets you create geo-filters that are specific to your restaurant brand. People can use these filters when sending a snap from your restaurant.

Social media marketing for restaurants via Snapchat can be great fun and also entice your customers. Read in detail how to use Snapchat for restaurant marketing here.

3.4. Twitter

how you can use Twitter for promoting your restaurant on social media

Twitter is a great platform for social media marketing for restaurants and many restaurant brands have actively started using this platform to reach out to the customers, engage with them, and increase brand awareness. It is amongst the most popular social media platforms that can help you reach thousands of people, quickly and mostly for free!

You can use the following steps to make your Twitter handle more engaging:

  • Twitter Specific Promotions: Run promotions of offers that are Twitter-specific. You can hand out discount coupons/codes to your Twitter followers. Offer “insider” deals exclusively for your followers.
  • Make Use Of Hashtags: Twitter is a great platform to make use of hashtags. Curate a special hashtag for your restaurant and use it in all your posts. You can also encourage your customers to use that hashtag when posting about your restaurant.
  • Use Twitter Cards: These cards let you tweet beyond the basic text. You can attach photos, videos, etc. along with the cards. You have various options like.  
    Summary card: It includes title, description, and thumbnail.
    Summary card with photo: Along with title, description, and thumbnail you can also add photos.
    Photo card: This is only for photos
    Player card: This is for featuring any videos.

Twitter is one of the oldest and most renowned social media platforms. Read in detail how you can use Twitter for promoting your restaurant on social media here. 

3.5. Tiktok

TikTok is one of the most rapidly developing social media sites, particularly among young people. Restaurants that develop interesting films can quickly earn notoriety from their target audience.

It’s effective for restaurant social media because:

  • It has a sizable user base.
  • It simplifies the process of generating short-form videos.
  • It enables you to access a wide, predominantly young audience.

Another way to get more people to see your account is to use hashtags on this platform. Make sure to hashtag your location so that visitors and locals on our platform may find your business on the Explore page.

4. Best Practices For Social Media Marketing For Restaurant 

Here are some of the things to keep in mind while using social media marketing for restaurants.

  • Content planning: It is essential to decide the kind of content you wish to post online. You can post engaging content like a recipe for preparing one of the mocktails you serve. Exciting content keeps people coming back to your social media and also to your restaurant.
  • Regularity: It is very essential to update your social media profile regularly. This would ensure that people keep seeing your restaurant on their feeds. If you are irregular with your posts, your customers might forget about you. Your aim is to be noticed and regularity helps you achieve that.
  • Originality: Being original is imperative. The posts that you share online should be freshly curated. People like originality and appreciate something different. Posting original content is a good way of engaging more people.
  • Tracking your success: Posting on social media is not enough, you need to track and analyze if social media marketing is working good for you or not. This helps you understand if you need to invest more time into your social media account for engaging more people.

Social media marketing for restaurants is essential for the growth of any restaurant. There are several social media platforms you can choose from to endorse your restaurant. Social media has not only paved a way for advertising your restaurant but has also helped in interacting with the customers.

All said and done, social media is only one, although an important part of restaurant marketing. You need to leverage other channels of marketing as well to ensure that you spread the right word about your business, and attract as well as retain customers.

Read this expert guide by industry veterans wherein they reveal the best practices of restaurant marketing that has actually worked for them.

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Prachi is the Marketing Manager at Restroworks. In her current capacity, she establishes connections with key stakeholders in the F&B industry and serves as the host of The Restaurant Times talk show, "F&B Talks," tailored for the restaurant sector. With hands-on experience in international sales and marketing, Prachi has led initiatives in the LATAM and USA regions, contributing to the platform's global outreach.


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