How Has Instagram Transformed the F&B Industry?

How Has Instagram Transformed the F&B Industry?

When we talk about social media platforms that have truly redefined the restaurant industry, none have done so in a more impactful way than Instagram. There was a time where photography in a restaurant was considered rude or even uncouth. These days, however, not only is it often encouraged, it could very well be a way for restaurants to boost business, publicity and popularity.


The Instagram Generation

The reason that Instagram is wholly being embraced by many in the restaurant industry is because of its wide-reaching influence. [1] Over 1 billion people use Instagram on a monthly basis. Instagram is also most-popular among a younger demographic. [2] "71% of Instagram users around the globe are under the age of 35." More importantly for restaurant owners, Instagram users span all income brackets so any type of restaurant -from fine dining to mom and pop joints - can benefit from using Instagram to tap into the wealth of the Instagram generation.


Instagram's Business Potential

Instagram currently has a robust platform from which businesses can specifically target the market segment that they desire. This helps narrow a business' advertising focus while reaching the most relative users. Indeed, Instagram currently has over [3] 25 million business profiles, many of which are restaurants.


What are 'Foodies'?

Foodies are Instagram users who devote a large amount of their Instagram profiles to sharing flashy photos of food, restaurant décor and even drinks. Where it was once frowned-upon to photograph your food, nowadays many restaurants encourage it. Free publicity is good publicity, after all. Foodies actually help improve a restaurant's appeal to millennials as [4]"30% of them would avoid a restaurant if [the restaurant's] Instagram presence is weak." This means that in addition to having foodies promoting your business on their Instagram accounts, restaurants also need to have their own Instagram accounts that are well-managed. One survey found that [5]"each new [Instagram] follower is worth £11.90." Now that's a good investment!


How can You Make Your Business More Instagrammable?

Start by taking a look at your business' décor. It's extremely important to have a vibe and atmosphere that looks great in photos. Having some sort of mural or art outside your restaurant -like a decorated wall -can bring in more people. However, the most important asset your business has is the food and drinks. They have to be bright, vibrant and presented in a way that looks intriguing and different. The more likes an Instagrammer gets from photographing your menu items, the better it is for all parties involved.


Real-world Examples of How Instagram is Changing the F&B Industry

[6] Lifestyle blogger Angie Silver says: "Bright colours, unusual and unique dishes work well hence the rise of rainbow bagels, freak shakes and unicorn ice-cream."


[7] Ehab Shouly, director of the Tea Terrace on Oxford Street, has created a 'Selfieccino', where a special printer prints a picture of the customer onto the foam of their coffee. Ehab says he goes above and beyond because "It's all about creating unique experiences that our customers can document on Instagram and social media."


[8] Lucy Watson, owner of Coppa, has chosen a very Instagram-friendly location for her food business by placing it in close proximity to London's iconic Tower Bridge. She claims, "Instagram is a much more visual experience than what we've seen previously and it's important to have engaging and consistent content."


[9] A pub called Fox Under the Hill, allows customers to upgrade their meal to include glitter gravy for that extra wow-factor. General Manager Anish Patel says, "The gravy, developed for "Generation Instagram", gives the traditional dinner that extra dazzle."


Be it Selfieccinos, scenic locations or glitter gravy, F&B businesses are looking to stand out from the crowd and provide food that not only tastes great, but also looks amazing in photos.











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