How Social Media Has Benefited Small Food Businesses

Social media has changed the way people dine out. How many of you are guilty of taking a picture of that amazing looking dish before relishing it? Chances are you would have taken at least one ‘food picture’ when the perfect looking dish was set in front of you at a restaurant.

This trend has benefited small business immensely. Apart from the amazing hole-in-the-wall café that your friend’s Facebook post made you yearn to visit, there are other ways you would have seen these food posts – social media profiles of the restaurants themselves.

A glimpse into the world of instafood pictures and some Tips (pun intended)

A restaurants online page can tell you about the restaurant itself. The photos and regular status updates can help form a great first impression before customers walk in the door. Online reviews too matter. Many customers now check the rating and review for a restaurant before they invest their time and dollars into a dining experience there. Here are some ways for you to make your restaurant look and feel good on social media.

Firstly, it is okay if you are not present on every single social media website. It is better to have your presence on one or two sites but have it regularly updated than having 10 accounts all of which are not up to date.  Photography is the most important thing when it comes to food online. Remember that customers cannot taste your food on the screen; it should be inviting and a feast for the eyes.

You should hire a professional food photographer for the photos on your website and menus. However you needn’t hire a professional to make your food look great on your social media updates. Well, if you can afford to, you certainly should. But if you can’t, here are some tips to make your food photos looks just like they taste – scrumptious. You can use your camera phone to take quality images and upload them immediately since time is a major factor in social media. You are more likely to get views for ‘actionable content’. That roughly translates into – those Vietnamese steamed buns are a special only this weekend – ‘we should go this weekend’.

Here are some tips for taking great food pictures for your phone:

  1. Use natural light and shoot during the day. Photos shot at night under the restaurants lighting are not going to look amazing.
  2. Use a high quality image. Remember that not everyone is going to be viewing it on their phone. Some people may be viewing from their laptops, other from their tablets and a few others may even have their social media set up on their on their large screen TV. You want the photo to look good everywhere.
  3. Don’t take a picture of partially eaten food. It should be a brand new plate.
  4. More colours look good. Contrasting colours add spice to the photo.
  5. If a dish has only colour, try using a patterned or brightly coloured table as the background
  6. If there are many colours in the dish, be sure to leave some white space around the frame to make it look balanced
  7. The rule of thirds works on not just portraits but food pictures too. Some phones come with the grid already installed, you just have to enable it, else you can just imagine the frame divided into two vertical and two horizontal lines. The main part of the food item should appear along the lines of the grid.
  8. Don’t apply filters or weird frames to the photos.