By JrmJune 19,2018
Social media has completely changed the game of the food industry.
It is not uncommon to walk into a café and watch patrons form their table into a stunning spread of dishes, hovering above it for 20 minutes to get that perfect shot on their Canon EF 50mm before allowing their friends to dig in.
Taking photos of what you eat and posting them to social media applications such as Instagram is a global social phenomenon that only seems to be growing. Take for instance Platform 82’s breakfast towers, donut walls at events, Black Star Pastry’s watermelon cakes, unicorn frappuccinos and avocado toast. And what do they all have in common? Social media made them a hit.
There’s no denying that trends such as ‘avo on toast’ accredits Instagram as one of the main reasons for its mega growth in Australia over the past few years. Over 280 million Instagram posts have been hashtagged “food” on the photosharing platform since 2010. This has compelled cafes, restaurants and the retail market to pay close attention to the value of a finessed social media presence.
In a world where aesthetics is fundamental, I chatted to Sara, the social media manager of The Grounds of Alexandria a few weeks ago, which currently boasts upwards of 170k followers on their Instagram page. The Grounds’ appealing smorgasbord of colourful food and drinks is fine tuned by staff including two full time social media managers, a horticulturist and a stylist. The Grounds understands the value of presentation in order to “Instagram-ready” their cafes, and are convinced that having an in-house stylist and a savvy utilisation of social media gives the business an edge.
No surprise then that it was the 6th most Instagrammed place in Australia last year.
And let’s look at it from a business perspective too! Social media in the food industry has the ability to inform new product development, the desires and wants of consumers and an in-depth understanding of why consumers share photos and interact with that presence online.
If one thing’s for sure, and we’ve seen it time and time again – social media has the power to make eateries known all over the country, turning them into must-see tourist attractions. Aesthetically pleasing food concepts have the ability to take the internet by storm, allowing consumers to increase their own social media engagement, whilst simultaneously advertising your own brand.