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Hoping to increase your social media buzz? Instagram has become one of the most widely used social platforms, giving people the voice that Twitter and Facebook allow with more a visual focus.

Attract the Instagram masses by giving your profile the attention it deserves. Try these tactics to build traction:

  • Show what your restaurant is all about. Start with an Instagram handle that clearly distinguishes you from other restaurants or companies with similar names. Then post clear, high-quality photos of not only your most popular menu items but also your dining space, exterior façade, events, happy customers, employees and even behind-the-scenes action. Capture the ambiance of your restaurant with your posts and let your images largely speak for themselves. Double (or triple) your efforts by sharing across your other social platforms for maximum visibility and perhaps even an influx of new followers.
  • It’s all about location, location, location. Setting up a location tag for your restaurant as well as a few signature hashtags can help your marketing efforts. When you create a location on Instagram, it will publicly show that users have been at your restaurant – and as an added bonus, even save your location to users’ phones as a friendly reminder for the next time they’re nearby and in the app.Always be sure to tag your personal posts at your restaurant location, so Instagram users who aren’t even searching your profile will see your delicious photography intermingled with that of your customer base. Same goes for hashtags; use a few (and only a few), highlighting your restaurant’s name and some popular menu items, encouraging customers to re-post with the hashtags. Make these signature hashtags known by using them on all your social sites to create brand consistency.
  • Interact with your following. In your photo captions, request customer opinions and feedback. You can also ask for engagement by hosting photo contests on your Instagram account. For example, you could offer a free meal to customers who post the most creative Instagram photo of themselves and their friends enjoying a meal at your restaurant during a specified time period, such as a holiday weekend. Share particularly fantastic posts that your restaurant is tagged in, and encourage your audience to come in for special events and promotions.