While the practice of taking aesthetically pleasing pictures of food and posting it on Instagram is often mocked and used as fodder for late-night comedians, restaurants can take advantage of the trend and use it to their advantage. Many restaurants have social media directors to help make their restaurant photographs go viral and increase foot traffic.
Tips to Make Your Restaurant Instagram-Friendly
The following are some common-sense tips to help your customers take Instagram food pictures that will help market your restaurant through the use of social media users.
Light the Way
The first step to getting great Instagram food pictures is the same guiding principle for any photography, which is to find or create the right lighting to present your subject best. Natural light is best to produce aesthetically pleasing pictures of food. Adding or opening large windows, or installing a couple of skylights will brighten up the restaurant and provide ample light for great Instagram photos.
Dark rooms can be brightened up by painting the walls with bright colors and rearranging the furniture to create a more open and inviting look and feel. White tables or tablecloths can also shed some light on a dark room.
Sharpen the Background
Compelling Instagram food pictures are more about just the food on the plate. The way the background is presented can have a major impact on the likeability and share-ability factors for Instagram and other social media users. Some ways to spice up the background of restaurant photographs include:
- Dynamic plating
- Marble table tops
- Backing racks
- Wooden serving board
- Napkin with restaurant logo
You can brighten up the room and make the background look sharp and appealing, but if the food itself does not look fresh and palatable, the photo will fail to have the desired impact of drawing people into the restaurant. Make the food look like it just came out of the oven, with steam coming off the plate and cheese melting down the sides.
Properly adding and adjusting the shape and texture of the food will make the dish look fresh and tasty. Fruits and vegetables will add color variety and a look of freshness to the plate. Lightly coating meat and bread with a brush of oil will make the dish pop off the plate and into the photo.
The most effective Instagram food pictures are simple and fresh. Avoid overcrowding the plate and try to insert different props and accessories to find the best composition. Garnish and unique plating designs will make the picture more visually appealing.
Beyond the Food
There are ways to make your restaurant Instagram-worthy beyond the taste and presentation of the food. Offer a unique item that the social media world can identify with your location. A neon sign, statue, or other item related to the theme of your restaurant will encourage visitors to take snapshots with it for instant recognition of your eatery.
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