It’s easy to forget about your social media accounts when juggling your time in the kitchen, recipe development, accounting, and not to mention your personal life. But social media has become one of the most popular and accessible ways for brands to market their businesses online. Although the world of social media marketing may seem intimidating, once you start and get into a rhythm for posting, shooting your own content and staying up to date with trends will become much easier.
Here are five tips to help you start making content and post consistently on your social media channels.
1. Focus on video
What you post is very important to how much reach (the number of unique accounts that see your post) you’ll get. With the rise of TikTok, and Instagram’s founder Adam Mosseri announcing that Instagram will be prioritizing video content, it’s worthwhile to spend more time turning that quick photo into a 10 second clip.
When creating videos, try to have fun with it. Whether you want to share a new menu item, a behind the scenes, or a “meet the team”, you’ll want to evoke an emotional reaction from your audiences. Videos that are entertaining, inspiring, and creative perform best. Our rule of thumb: if it’s entertaining to make, chances are it will be entertaining to viewers! From recipe videos, to dramatic cheese pulls, or ASMR mixing videos - the opportunities for video content are endless.
2. Experiment with graphic design
You don’t need to be a professional graphic designer to make beautiful posts for your account. There are many free design tools out there! We recommend Canva, which comes with templates that you can easily swap out with your brand colors, fonts, and your own photos. They also provide the proper size dimensions for whichever social platform you are posting on.
Graphics can be a great way to announce promotions, celebrate holidays, or share insights about your ingredients. They offer visual alternatives to a long caption, which can be tiring to read. Better yet, turn your graphics into a carousel post to encourage more engagement when users are prompted to swipe to learn more.
3. Build your social network
The easiest thing you can do to expand your network is to encourage your current customers to post about your product. When a customer shares their experience with your food, it’s basically a Google Review that will automatically be seen by 100 of their followers!
You can also invest in giveaways or collaborative posts with local foodies. Influencers have much larger followings than your average customer, and are the most effective way to inspire new audiences to try your products. Take Coho Commissary members Kozu Sushi Pizza and Takenaka for example. If you go to their tagged posts, they run monthly giveaways with influencers who have more followers than their own accounts, immediately increasing their market reach.
Don’t be shy - foodies want to collab as much as you do. Find an influencer whose style aligns with yours, and slide into those DMs!
4. Get organized
Now that you know what to post, it’s time to figure out when to post. Social media planners are great time-savers, whether you choose to invest in one or opt for the free version. We recommend Later, Planoly, and Hootsuite as affordable options to start with. Each of them have a user-friendly planner to help you schedule posts across platforms, including the big players for food & beverage businesses, like Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and Twitter. Some of them also come with a (paid) feature that recommends optimal posting times, so you can schedule posts when your followers are most active. With your content already drafted, all you have to do is write your captions and hit schedule.
With these planners, try to schedule posts as far in advance as possible. The further in advance you are able to make content and schedule ahead, the more time you will save in the future! When planning out your calendar, start with notable holidays / events that are essential dates you want to post on or about. Then, we recommend you aim to post 3 times per week. This is a cadence that won’t be too overwhelming for you to make content. It will also prevent your followers from becoming tired or bored with your account and instead will likely be more excited every time you post.
5. Be Real
No, we’re not talking about the new BeReal app that aims to achieve more authentic posts, rather than the heavily filtered versions of life that are typical to Instagram. But the sentiment is the same. Similar to staying true to your brand, it’s important to remember that the end users on social media are humans who are looking to be entertained and connect with other humans. While promoting your brand is important, taking a more human approach to what you’re writing in your captions or showing in videos, will help greatly.
The Dumpling King sets a great example - he is the brand and the brand is him. He is unapologetically himself in all his videos and posts. His account shows how it’s okay to be casual, use emojis, and show plenty of behind the scenes.
Whether you’re just starting your business or have already established an online presence, it’s never too late to dedicate time towards your social media game. Follow Coho Commissary online for more small business resources like this!