Published on March 21, 2023
The most fun restaurant promotion ideas let your best customers become your brightest stars.
We all know what it’s like to see our name in lights, or at the very least, we all wish we could see them up there, all bright and shiny, once in our lives. The reason people use hashtags is not unlike their desire for a well-lit soapbox—you don’t hashtag a post you don’t want to be seen. That’s why coming up with fun restaurant promotion ideas using hashtags is pretty easy—just play into the idea that people like to be seen and to share.
2007-2010 was a good time for restaurants on social media. People were snapping photos of their food to share everywhere. But then along came Negative Nancies, who decided it was lame to post food photos, and even a few restaurants who wouldn’t let people take pictures of their dishes, and they spoiled it for everyone.
But that time is behind us, and the social media world has a lot worse things to complain about, so food photos are back in, and even better, people are using hashtags to organize them, especially on sites like Instagram, which is a perfect viral platform for restaurants.
Want to spread the word about your restaurant without lifting a finger? Use Everwall to create monthly contests that incentivize customers to snap photos of your food and share them on social media! Start building your social wall today!
If you want to get more action on your social accounts and inside your business, try these five cheap but fun restaurant promotion ideas using hashtags:
1. Tap into existing hashtags.
Use hashtags like #foodie, #foodporn, and #foodstagram, or tap into more specific ones like #pizza or #italianfood. Even better, always hashtag your location. Apps like Instagram will tell you the most highly used hashtags as you type them in, so you can start typing and pick the best ones. For example, #MadisonWI has 866k users, whereas #MadisonWisconsin only has 352k. Have no shame in using both; just don’t use more than 30 hashtags in a post or you may be penalized.
2. Create a crowdsourced picture menu.
Say what? It sounds bonkers, but at least two restaurants have done it so far. Brent’s Deli in Los Angeles and Comodo in New York both came up with hashtags and asked patrons to take photos of their meals, which the restaurants shared as “picture menus” on their Instagram pages.
3. Come up with a great photo op.
We’re all familiar with the giant sombrero at Mexican restaurants that everyone wants to take photos with. Organize all that enthusiasm by creating a photo op in your own restaurant and making a big hashtag sign so people use it when they take photos, and hopefully, if it’s fun enough, get other people to come in themselves.
4. Create a poll using hashtags.
Do you have two popular dishes that people swoon over but are only available seasonally? Create a hashtag war, asking your restaurant fans to post the hashtag of the plate they want. The dish with the most hashtags goes on the menu, and you select some participants to get the dish for free. To make the competition even more engaging, Everwall can support and display polls and you and your customers can watch the updates in real time on your wall.
5. Display an Everwall in your business.
With Everwall, guests can see everyone who is using your hashtag. Encourage people to take photos of their favorite dishes and events at your restaurant, and display the leaderboards so that you can pick a winner at the end of the month. This will encourage repeat visits and viral attention you only need to facilitate.
Get started with hashtag marketing with a customizable Everwall for your restaurant that includes the ability to monitor and filter posts. Start building your social wall today!
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