Making Memories in the Age of Content
As a food and lifestyle blogger, I come across tons of content dedicated to the growth of food brands. That varies from teenagers and gamers talking about a certain nutty brand of chocolates to something as random as the ‘Ramen Hack’. If you don’t know what that is, it’s time now that you joined Tik-Tok to stay apprised of the market trends.
But as much as this content is popular, my philosophy for food and hospitality has always been to create multiple singular pieces of engaging content that deliver precisely the experience you want your patrons to expect when they come to you.
And although many content creators or marketers disagree with my stance, please give me a few words to explain why I think like this.
Reels and TikTok are the most notable content styles because they are short, and people are actually interested in short, quick style content that conveys the message.
But what they usually convey is that here is all that we offer as condensed in a 15-second clip.
I believe restaurant owners would agree when I say that now more than ever, patrons are willing to try and experiment with new concepts that were not usually seen or expected. People are more experimental with their food options and expect a specific entertaining experience when they look for a place and are willing to pay top dollar for that experience. Case in point, Friday Nights at NGV. A beautiful night at an Art Gallery that delivers a background that accommodates music, wine, food and art but only people who book it will experience it because it’s exclusive.
So here’s an approach that is slightly different from the others, if you have something unique to offer, let that experience be unique and only be offered a certain way. Because sometimes, chasing trends can be a ghost chase and just more work than you signed up for. Although it’s a great idea to sign up and understand where the market is so you can create a unique proposition that attracts patrons.
Here’s what we recommend:
Optimise your bios:
Because you’re not going to be posting a whole lot of content, think about what will someone looking for you think of and create a bio keeping them in mind. To not miss out if the bios are, hours of operation, contact number, address, a web address, a link to a menu and a brief description of the experience. I would leave out the dietary options you provide and include them on the menu unless you are a diet-based restaurant or part of your brand identity.
Curate your profile:
As you may know, Instagram is all about the imagery, so choose images that best describe the vibes created at the restaurant. Think about yourself as the market leader, do what you think is best instead of following what others are doing. User-generated content is a big plus for your restaurant, so always let people know that they can tag you and create a folder of the ‘good times’ created at your restaurant for people to see. Think about your Instagram as a message board for your patrons; they can see here if you have updated the menu, what the local speciality is, how it can tie in with the experience they are looking for. Again, fewer words, more images. Doing reels/Tik-Tok is a great way to create a buzz about your business, so go for someone who can tell a story about your restaurant instead of just ‘hey guys, check out this new place..’
I’m sure the reason you chose to open this restaurant or cafe has a story, so be open to telling people that story. Not too long ago, I met with Rocco, the manager at the Pellegrini espresso bar in the CBD, and as I talked with him, he told me that the cafe has gone from generation to generation and can really tell the story of a time gone by. Rocco embraces those stories and connects with people based on them. The place has a strong connection with its patrons that keep them wanting more. It has a certain charm of old-world Italy that blends in so beautifully with the coffee culture in Melbourne. Their page only has 6 posts on Instagram but tonnes of user images. My point is your stories are important, more important than you think.
Connect with the audiences based on your stories, the stories of your patrons and the experiences will be unique, and instead of just photos, memories will be made.
I believe that is more important than anything else as a restaurant owner.
This can be achieved in many ways, visual, audio, interactive, written too, but you should be open and willing to tell your story.
This article was written by Priyanka Rajwani. Priyanka is a digital brand manager and content creator that loves exploring cultural stories through food, you can find her on IG @kokiied.