5 Must-See Instagram Accounts
The recent Terms of Service controversy aside, there is arguably no hotter social media platform than photo sharing juggernaut Instagram. Facebook purchased it for big bucks last year and it seems like there are now dozens of sites attempting to replicate its social model for pictures.
All of which means that bar and restaurant owners need to be aware of potential benefits Instagram can have for their business. Here are 5 food-industry Instagram accounts that are using the platform the right way:
Jeni’s Ice Creams
Since the Instagram platform is all about the visual, some of the best accounts showcase beautiful images of their location, events and food.
Jeni’s Ice Creams, a dessert chain based in Ohio, has an Instagram account filled with gorgeous images of its food. It is difficult to spend time on the account and not start thinking about stopping by for a treat. But Jeni’s doesn’t stop there. They share pictures of their locations, staff, customers, delivery trucks – literally everything that goes into the process of running their business.
Cannoli Joe’s, a gourmet Italian restaurant in Austin, TX, appears to be one of the earlier adopters when it comes to restaurant Instagram accounts.
With photos dating back to September 2011, Cannoli Joe’s has taken advantage of the photo-sharing platform to post delicious snapshots of their menu. You’ll see everything from waffles off of the brunch menu to catering appetizers. Not only does Cannoli Joe’s post great food photos, they share fun photos as well, like the staff wishing everyone a Happy Halloween.
Pinkberry, a frozen yogurt chain with locations in California and New York, does a particularly good job of facilitating the sharing of its product by others.
Pinkberry is active in requesting that customers share images of their experience using the Instagram tag #pinkberry. The result is a robust community of customers who participate in the social media experience. Sharing our lives with others has become automatic for millions of Americans and Pinkberry is making sure it is part of that phenomenon.
Schmidt’s Sausage Haus
Much like Pinkberry, Schmidt’s Sausage Haus in the heart of German Village, Ohio also does a great job of crowdsourcing Instagram photos.
Whether it’s on their Facebook page or in their monthly newsletter, Schmidt’s is active in asking their fans to upload photos of Bahama Mamas and Jumbo Cream Puffs to Instagram with the hashtag #schmidts. A majority of their Instagram photos are shared fan photos (with proper attribution), which attracts a lot of attention from Instagram users.
A particularly interesting use of Instagram is restaurants who take advantage of the platform as a type of visual menu. The idea being that patrons can scroll through entrées and get a clear sense for what they’re getting if they make a certain menu choice.
The originator of this strategy seems to be New York City’s Comodo restaurant. Comodo sends customers to the tag #comodomenu, which contains 700+ images of the Latin American-themed restaurant’s fare, providing the chance to preview potential orders. Stuck between the fish and the steak? A close look at the two might just help you decide.
One of the great things about Instagram is that it can be utilized in a multitude of ways. Determine what is best for your restaurant and start incorporating it into your strategy.