How many of your friends on social media post pictures or videos about different foods they're eating? Or how many YouTube shorts have you watched recently where a chef took packaged food and turned it into something exotic?
If you're like most people, you can get sucked into watching those for hours! After a while, you want to try the foods out yourself. Am I right?
The reality is that food goes viral on social media.
As the culinary world evolves, so does the art of attracting customers. That's why if you want to attract more customers to your restaurant, consider making the kinds of food people are already watching.
At Pick On Us, we understand that crafting dishes to tantalize taste buds and ignite a social media frenzy can significantly impact a restaurant's success. So we've written this guide to help you master the art of creating dishes that go viral on social media. In this article, we dive into the strategies, trends, and tips that can turn your restaurant into a hotspot for both food enthusiasts and TikTok's foodie community.
Why Social Media Matters in Running Your Restaurant
In today's fast-changing digital world, social media's impact goes beyond personal connections. It's reshaping industries and how we market. For food manufacturers and concessioners in the culinary field, using social media isn't just helpful – it's a must.
Here's why social media is crucial for your restaurant business:
Connecting with Your Audience
Social media connects your restaurant and customers closely. It's more than transactions – it's where your brand's personality shines. Interactive posts build a community beyond sales, creating loyal customers who advocate for your brand.
Think about it: how many times have you tried a new restaurant based on the recommendation of a friend or a glowing 5-star rating online? When you connect with your clientele, they become ambassadors for you. This is generally far more effective than marketing yourself.
Showcasing Your Culinary Creations
Social media's visual appeal suits the restaurant's artistic nature. Share stunning images and videos of your dishes to entice viewers' senses. Your creations, be it a dessert or entrée, can shine online and create excitement for potential customers.
Building a Strong Online Presence
In a sea of dining options, carving out a distinctive online presence is essential. Your lively social media is like a virtual storefront that draws people in. This is especially important when people search for places to eat. A dynamic profile sets you apart and invites people to experience your offerings.
For example, some street vendors generate more revenue than brick-and-mortar restaurants. How?
Usually because of a strong presence they've built online.
The digital age has brought forth a new form of celebrity - social media influencers and food bloggers. Collaborating with these influential figures introduces your restaurant to an entirely new audience. Their endorsements have a genuine appeal that attracts interested diners wanting to taste the flavors their favorite food blogger praised.
Social media's instant communication lets you get real-time feedback from customers. Reviews, comments, and messages create a loop for improving customer happiness. Addressing issues quickly and showing your commitment to meeting expectations builds trust in your brand.
To sum up, social media has transformed how restaurants connect and succeed online. Its ability to link, magnify, and motivate is clear. In the dynamic food industry, using these platforms can set your business apart and secure a top spot. Embrace social media and let it carry your culinary creations beyond your kitchen, captivating the world.
Tips for Maximizing Social Media in Your Restaurant
Mastering social media can unlock your restaurant's potential. Here are essential tips to boost visibility, engagement, and loyalty.
Regular posting is key to your social media plan. It keeps your brand in focus for your audience. Share appealing food photos, behind-the-scenes glimpses, and event news. This mix appeals to foodies and casual diners, creating a complete online image.
Use Hashtags and Geotags
Using hashtags and geotags boosts discoverability. Trending hashtags expand your post's reach. Geotags attract locals and cuisine seekers. This connects your online presence to your physical restaurant.
Create Interactive Content
Boost engagement with interactive content. Hold contests and polls that involve your audience. These create a community around your restaurant. Q&A sessions build a genuine connection with your patrons.
Share User-Generated Content
Turn customers into online ambassadors. Urge them to share dining experiences through photos and reviews. This shows your restaurant from their view, offering real social proof that influences others. Ultimately, it builds a stronger bond with your patrons.
Publish Stories and Live Videos
Stories and live videos show your restaurant in real time. Share updates, kitchen moments, and sneak peeks. The unfiltered feel builds a stronger online connection and a sense of exclusivity for viewers.
In the busy world of food manufacturing and concessions, these social media strategies make your restaurant stand out. Using these tactics, you create a lively online presence for today's digital diners. But what types of food do people want to see? Let's look at five currently trending foods that you could try today.
5 Trending Foods You Can Try Now
Staying trendy is vital in today's ever-changing food world. You don't want to be publishing social media posts about food that people were into two or three years ago. As food manufacturers and concessioners, you want to meet the desires your customers have right now. Here are five trending foods that can help your restaurant make an impact and leave a mark:
1. Hybrid Creations
Combining favorite cuisines or foods creates a unique dish that intrigues and delights. Embrace the unexpected, crafting fusion dishes that take customers on a memorable flavor journey.
An example of a hybrid creation in the culinary world is the Sushi Burrito. This innovative dish combines elements of Japanese sushi with the concept of a Mexican burrito. A Sushi Burrito consists of various sushi ingredients such as raw fish, rice, vegetables, and seaweed, all wrapped together in a large sheet of seaweed like a burrito. The fusion of these two culinary traditions results in a unique and visually appealing dish. It offers a mix of flavors, textures, and cultural influences. This creation intrigues and delights customers by offering them a new and exciting way to experience familiar ingredients.
2. Over-the-Top Desserts
Over-the-top desserts are a mix of indulgence and beauty. Think extravagant milkshakes with candy, cookies, and cake slices, or towering sundaes. These treats are perfect for Instagram, and customers can't resist photographing them before tasting them.
To create an extravagant milkshake:
1 - Choose a Base: Start with a rich and creamy milkshake base. You can use classic flavors like vanilla or chocolate or get creative with unique options like cookies and cream, salted caramel, or even a fruity blend.
2 - Blend and Decorate: Prepare the milkshake by blending the chosen base with milk and ice cream. Make it thick and smooth.
3 - Add Toppings: This is where the extravagance comes in. Prepare your toppings – candy, cookies, cake slices, whipped cream, chocolate syrup, and more.
4 - Decorative Edge: Coat the rim of your milkshake glass with chocolate syrup, then dip it in crushed candies or cookie crumbs for an eye-catching edge.
5 - Building the Shake: Pour the milkshake into the glass, leaving some space at the top.
6 - Toppings Tower: This is the fun part. Insert a straw or skewer into the shake and start stacking your toppings. Place cookies, cake slices, and candy bars on the skewer, letting them rest on the rim of the glass. You can also add a big dollop of whipped cream on top.
7 - Drizzle and Garnish: Drizzle more chocolate or caramel sauce over the whipped cream and add colorful sprinkles, crushed nuts, or edible glitter for that extra touch.
8 - Serve with Style: Present your extravagant milkshake with flair. Consider adding a colorful straw, mini umbrella, or other creative garnishes.
Remember, the key is to be creative and have fun with your choices of toppings and decorations.
3. Plant-Based Offerings
As more people seek plant-based options, highlight creative vegan and vegetarian dishes. Upgrade traditional recipes with innovative plant-based ingredients, proving that sustainability and flavor can go hand in hand.
One such offering is the Beyond Burger. To make a Beyond Burger,
- Preheat a grill or stovetop pan to medium-high heat
- Take the Beyond Burger patties from the packaging
- Cook them directly from frozen for about 3 minutes on each side until they're browned and heated through
- Toast burger buns on the grill or in a separate pan for a minute or two
Once the patties are cooked, place them on the toasted buns and add toppings like lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese, and condiments. The Beyond Burger offers a plant-based alternative with a taste and texture similar to traditional beef burgers. It's a quick and delicious option for those seeking a sustainable and flavorful meal. Cooking times might vary based on patty thickness and desired doneness, so check the package for specific guidelines.
4. Colorful Foods
In this age of social media, colorful dishes are a feast for the eyes and a magnet for likes. Think beyond the ordinary and create vibrant, visually stunning dishes that practically beg to be shared. From rainbow-hued sushi rolls to kaleidoscopic salads, these dishes are as pleasing to the camera as they are to the palate.
To make a kaleidoscopic salad, follow these steps:
- Select an array of vibrant vegetables such as red and yellow bell peppers, carrots, purple cabbage, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and radishes.
- Wash all vegetables thoroughly and peel or trim as needed. Slice, dice, or julienne the vegetables into different shapes and sizes. The goal is to create a visually appealing mix of colors and textures.
- Choose a base of fresh greens such as kale, spinach, or mixed lettuce. Wash and dry the greens, then tear or chop them into bite-sized pieces.
- Start arranging the chopped vegetables and greens on a large serving platter or individual plates. Consider arranging them in color blocks or concentric circles for a kaleidoscopic effect.
- Introduce aromatic fresh herbs like basil, mint, or cilantro to enhance flavors. Edible flowers like nasturtiums or pansies can add a pop of color and elegance.
- Add crunchy elements like nuts (walnuts, almonds, or sunflower seeds) or croutons for texture and contrast.
- Whisk together a homemade dressing or use your favorite store-bought vinaigrette. Drizzle the dressing over the salad just before serving, ensuring even coverage.
- Gently toss the salad to combine all the ingredients and evenly coat them with the dressing. Serve the kaleidoscopic salad immediately as a visually stunning and nutritious dish.
Remember to balance flavors, textures, and colors to create a harmonious and visually appealing salad. It will be delightful to eat and a feast for the eyes. Feel free to customize the ingredients based on personal preferences and seasonal availability.
5. Miniature Delights
Bite-sized treats are a big hit, both in terms of taste and presentation. Create mini versions of your signature dishes, so customers can enjoy different flavors without a big commitment. These adorable bites are a hit, letting people try various options.
For instance, Pancake Cereal is miniature pancakes served in a bowl with butter and syrup.
Here's how to make it:
- Prepare pancake batter according to your preferred recipe.
- Preheat a non-stick griddle or pan over medium heat.
- If available, use a pancake batter dispenser for uniform drops.
- Lightly grease the cooking surface to prevent sticking.
- Dispense small drops of batter onto the griddle, leaving space between them.
- Cook for 1-2 minutes on each side until bubbles form and edges are golden.
- Remove cooked mini pancakes and repeat until batter is used.
- Place mini pancakes in a bowl.
- Add a small amount of butter and drizzle with maple syrup.
- Serve immediately for warm and delicious Pancake Cereal.
Pancake Cereal offers a unique twist on traditional pancakes, with bite-sized servings perfect for snacking. Customize with toppings like berries or chocolate chips for added flavor and creativity.
As you explore food trends, remember innovation, presentation, and engagement matter most. These trends can captivate the senses and create memorable experiences. By adopting these ideas, you'll cater to modern diners and establish yourself as a trendsetter. Embrace culinary experimentation, and see your offerings become talk-worthy and social media delights.
How to Create Your Own Viral Food Items!
Creating dishes that impress both taste buds and TikTok or Instagram is an art. For restaurant owners, making viral-worthy creations is key to winning over today's consumers. Here's a recipe to create your own viral food sensations:
Begin with Uniqueness
Like each dish's special taste, your creations should stand out. Find new gaps in the market or give classics creative twists to grab attention. Embrace the unexpected and see how curiosity brings food lovers to your unique offerings.
Add Visual Appeal
In the world of social media, presentation reigns supreme. Elevate your dishes through impeccable plating techniques that transform them into works of art. Think of bright colors, detailed arrangements, and pleasing textures. These elements delight both the taste buds and the eyes.
Tell a Story
Each dish has a story to share. Sharing that story can make your creation more meaningful to customers. Whether it's a tradition, a personal journey, or a fun idea, a captivating backstory makes your dish more memorable for those who enjoy it.
Use Engaging Names
A dish's name is its first introduction to the world, and a catchy, clever name can make a lasting impression. Add curiosity and humor to your creations with fun puns, pop culture nods, or clever wordplay. This makes people curious and eager to share.
Make Sure It's Shareable
Capitalize on the social nature of dining by designing dishes that beg to be shared. Add interactive parts to dishes, like DIY assembly or special presentation. Surprises or hidden elements make meals unforgettable, encouraging sharing online.
By weaving these essential ingredients into your culinary repertoire, you're not just crafting dishes – you're crafting experiences. These experiences transcend taste and become integral moments in your customers' lives. They will ensure that they not only delight palates but also capture the attention of social media-savvy diners. Embracing these strategies empowers you to create not just food but viral sensations. Social media attention like this sparks conversations. It ignites appetites and makes your brand a true force to be savored and shared.
Attracting customers can sometimes feel overwhelming. But it’s actually fairly simple when you simply create what you know they already want.
By paying attention to trending foods on social media, you can tailor your menu to the wave of social media influence. As folks discover they can find the trending foods at your restaurant and then come and eat at your restaurant and post about it on social media, you create a snowball effect of organic marketing.
It’s word-of-mouth taken to the next level!
If you’d like to learn more about becoming a viral restaurant success, contact Pick On Us! We help you design food that stands out.
Plus, you can always buy our products in bulk at wholesale prices!
But the very best part is that working with us couldn’t be easier:
- Visit and browse our website to choose the products you want
- Get your products delivered to your doorstep
Contact us today. We look forward to hearing from you!
Want to learn more about being successful in the restaurant industry? Check out a few of our other blogs:
- Stay Ahead of the Game: Tips for Keeping Up with Food Trends in 2023
- Building Your Restaurant Brand: 11 Ways Custom Food Serving Products Can Help
- Rethink Your Pub Snacks! Ideas For 7 Common Pub Snacks With An Upscale Twist
- Thinking Outside of the Restaurant Box
- 9 Products to Make Your Restaurant More Eco-Friendly