Social Media Marketing for Restaurants: 10 Strategies You Must Try

social media marketing for restaurants

48% of consumers use social media to look for food and drink recommendations. That is a pretty big number that should not be ignored when you are devising your marketing strategy, as your potential customers are surely present on at least one social media network.

If you want to advertise a new perfume, you won’t distribute flyers in a remote village. Similarly, you can’t promote your restaurant on an empty street, you need to go where your audience is. And right now, that is social media.

In this article, you will find a lot of relevant information about social media marketing for restaurants, such as the best time to post on every platform and strategies you must try for your business’s success.

Why social media for restaurants is essential for your business

Social media marketing for restaurants allows you to take control over your reputation. You can showcase your delicious menu and encourage people to visit your business. Here are the benefits you will miss out on if you ignore this marketing channel:

  • Increase visibility: people can’t visit or order from your restaurant if they don’t know it exists; use social media to reach new potential customers every day;
  • Create trust with your followers: transparency and authenticity are the key ingredients for a great social media presence. Give clients access backstage so you can foster a trusting connection;
  • Improve client loyalty: use social media platforms to implement promotions that will determine clients to keep coming back to your restaurant;
  • Free advertising: sure, you can invest in paid posts, but organic marketing will still help you get the word out about your restaurant business.

Read more: Why Restaurants Need Social Media to Promote Their Online Businesses

What is the best time to post on social media

When creating a social media strategy for restaurants, you must know that the time you post matters. The same high-quality content can get a ton of engagement or very few likes, depending on the hour it was posted.

You can find the best time to post by researching your audience and determining when they are most active on social media. You can do so by using analytic tools, trial and error posts, or even asking them about their preferred time period. Here are some time suggestions to get you started:

Best time to post on Facebook for restaurants

The best time to post can vary greatly based on your location and your audience's preferences. Some people enjoy checking social media after they wake up, some scroll through posts during their lunch break, and others spend their evenings browsing interesting content.

Use this data as a starting point and monitor the engagement, so you can choose the best time to post for your restaurant:

  • Best days to post on Facebook: Tuesday to Friday, with Saturday proving to be the worst;
  • Best time to post on Facebook: 10 a.m. and noon on Tuesday and 3 a.m. from Monday to Friday.

Read more: Facebook Marketing for Restaurants: 10 Tips & Secrets

Best time to post on Instagram for restaurants

Instagram has a great feature in stories where you can post a pool or ask questions. Use this to ask your followers when they spend the most time on social media and incentivize them with a prize for truthful answers.

Moreover, a good indicator can be the hour you receive more engagement, be it likes, shares, or comments.

If you are at the start and did not get to build a big community yet, we are here to help you with some recommendations:

  • Best days to post on Instagram: Tuesday and Wednesday, with Sunday being the worst
  • Best time to post on Instagram: Monday at 11 a.m., Tuesday and Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Thursday and Friday at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m.

Read more: Instagram for Restaurants: How to Successfully Promote Your Business

10 social media strategies for restaurants you must try

Being present on social media is just the start. To reap the full benefits, you must know how to curate your content, update your information and engage with the audience.

1. Create a social media marketing plan for restaurants

You need a plan to get the best results from social media marketing for restaurants. You can't just make an account and randomly post content when you remember.

Start by identifying the platforms your audience uses the most. For example, Facebook is generally used by the older generation, while Instagram and TikTok have predominantly younger users.

Then, you need to fill out your bio or description to let people know who you are and how they can find you. Here are a few tips:

  • Keep it short: attention span has decreased over the years, so you need to include a short description that perfectly encapsulates what your restaurant is about, such as a Unique Selling Proposition or mission statement;
  • Add updated working hours: people need to know when they can visit or order from your restaurant, so add your working hours in a visible place. Imagine going out to eat and finding the restaurant closed; it is unpleasant and could determine someone to leave a negative review;
  • Include a link to your website: the final goal of social media is to convert visitors to clients, so make sure to include a link to your website. It would be even better to link directly to your menu so people can order instantly.

Afterward, you must create a social media calendar for restaurants that makes your job easier and helps keep you accountable. Check out these efficient tricks:

  • Use Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets: you can organize posts by day and add pictures and captions, so you can have it all in one place when you are ready to post;
  • Plan for two weeks: rather than scrambling to find content at the last minute, come up with ideas for at least two weeks. This way, you can enjoy interacting with your followers in the meantime;
  • Consistency is key: ideally, you should post every day, but that is not sustainable for everyone. Aim to have quality content three days a week and avoid posting a lot one week and then forgetting about social media for a while.

Read more: How to Create the Best Restaurant Social Media Content Calendar (Example+Tips)

2. Use a consistent voice on all platforms

A consistent voice should be part of any social media strategy for restaurants, as it will help you gain visibility, build trust with your audience, and have more loyal customers.

The easiest way to come up with the perfect tone of voice for your restaurant is to personify it. Would you describe your restaurant persona as fun and bubbly, quirky, or rather professional?

The chosen personality should be easily identified by the photos you choose, the colors you use, the captions you add, and the way you interact with your clients, both online and offline.

Read more: Branding for Restaurants: What Is It, How To Do It, and Tips for Success

3. Promote your online menu to increase orders

Social media strategies for restaurants aim to attract new customers and increase client retention. To do so, you need to encourage your social media followers to order or visit your restaurant.

Having an accessible menu on every platform will allow people to see how delicious your food looks and entice them to try it. Therefore, you need a link in your profile that links directly to your attractive menu, full of mouth-watering pictures and tempting food descriptions.

Read more: How to Use Social Media for Restaurants to Easily Sell Your Delicious Food

The most effective way to do this is to get the online ordering system from GloriaFood, complete the necessary steps to set up your menu, and get a direct link that can be added to the “Start Order” button on Facebook and in your Instagram bio.

Easily create the best menu to promote on social media Sign up for a free online ordering system Start Now

After you easily create your menu with drag & drop, you can go to admin -> Setup -> Publishing -> Facebook, copy the link provided and add it to the "Start Order" button on Facebook. It works perfectly in your Instagram, Twitter, or TikTok bios too.

social media marketing strategy for restaurants

You must also consistently encourage people to check out your menu by posting alluring photos or stories of dishes with strong Calls to Action that will determine them to click on the link included in the post.

To get a link that can be added to posts, go to admin -> Setup -> Publishing -> Facebook (Sharing).

social media management for restaurants

Read more: Menu Marketing Tips: How to Promote New Menu Items Online & Offline

4. Show behind-the-scenes photos

If you are looking for social media ideas for restaurants, you should know the trend is leaning toward more authentic content that shows how life is behind-the-scenes at a restaurant.

Sure, most of your posts should still be about your main attraction, the delicious food on your menu. But you need to tell a story to give people a glimpse into your restaurant's life, so you can build a lasting bond.

Here are some great ideas you might want to integrate into your content plan:

  • How it’s made: photos of the cooking process that show the chef carefully plating the food. You should also produce video content to reach a bigger audience. You can film an entire recipe or short clips from the kitchen;
  • Candid shots: try to share the fun atmosphere at your restaurant with photos of your staff relaxing or doing their job. When you have patrons in your photos, blur their faces if they have not explicitly allowed you to take their picture and publish it;
  • Employee presentations: let the audience know about the great staff that prepares and serves their food by presenting a new employee weekly. You can also make short videos of employees recommending their favorite dish.

Read more: 25 Eye-Catching Social Media Post Ideas for Restaurants

5. Constantly engage with customers

Engagement promotes engagement. You can't just post your scheduled content, close the app, and expect to have great results. You need to put time and effort into communicating with your followers by replying to their comments and messages.

Try to dedicate half an hour of your time daily to checking new messages and responding using the consistent voice of your restaurant’s persona. On that note, make sure to claim your business’s profile on every review platform and reply to every review, be it positive or negative.

6. Promote user-generated content

Another trick for social media marketing for restaurants is to encourage clients to create content involving your restaurant and afterward promote it on your account. If you make your food and location aesthetically pleasing, people will be tempted to snap a photo and post it on their socials.

Make your own posts and stories advising people to show your food on their profile, and you can even offer a prize for the best photo. Show your audience you care about them by sharing every post where you are tagged.

7. Ask questions to keep people engaged

If you post photos of your food, some people may comment on how good and tasty it looks, ask about the price, or enquire about the ingredients. But successful digital marketing for restaurants must focus on every detail and come up with solutions to get the best results with the least effort.

Therefore, when you plan your posts, try to always end them with a question. It does not have to be something complicated. Use questions such as

  • Have you tried this dish?
  • What food from our menu would you like to try next?
  • What is your favorite ingredient?

This gives people a reason to engage with your post because they want to answer your questions. Also, if you are looking for Instagram content ideas for restaurants, use all the interactive functions of stories. You can post a poll, ask questions, host quizzes, add countdowns, and many more.

Read more: 10+ Instagram Content Ideas for Restaurants to Get Noticed

8. Host contests and advertise promotions

Social media marketing for restaurants must include contests and promotions to create visibility for a business, especially at the start. You can try a variety of them, the most popular strategy on social platforms being: share and like this post, and we will choose a random winner to get the prize.

Read more: 21 Restaurant Competition Ideas to Gain Visibility and Attract Customers

You can also use social media to announce your promotions and encourage people to order while they are still available. If you use the online ordering system from GloriaFood, implementing promotions is not only fast and easy but highly effective.

Increase the number of returning clients with effective promotions Install a free online ordering system with a built-in promotions module Start now

The promotions module allows you to segment the public to focus on increasing the number of returning customers, attracting new ones, increasing deliveries in a certain zone, and more. To access the feature, go to admin -> Marketing -> Promotions.

creative facebook posts for restaurants

Read more: 10 Restaurant Website Promotion Ideas for Delivery & Takeout

9. Collaborate with influencers

You may not yet have a big audience to interact with, but you can get more visitors and followers if you collaborate with an influencer. They will promote your restaurant on their social media page and encourage their followers to become your fans.

Choose the influencer you work with carefully. They should be in the same location as you and, ideally, either be a food influencer or have many food-related posts. Check out their other sponsored content to better understand how they would advertise your delicious food.

Read more: How to Invite Influencers to Your Restaurant for a Successful Collaboration

10. Monitor your social media presence

To grow, you need to know what you are doing right and what you are doing wrong regarding social media marketing for restaurants. Both Facebook and Instagram have an integrated analytics tool that you can use to see how well your posts are performing.

If you want to see if visitors actually converted to clients, you can also monitor your online sales after you invest in social media in the Reports module of the online ordering system.

You will be able to see the number of orders, how many people have accessed your online menu and then actually ordered, and much more. To get access, go to admin -> Reports:

digital marketing for restaurants

Read more: How to grow your food business with Restaurant Data Analytics


Social media marketing for restaurants is essential if you want your business to be successful. If you post the right content at the right time, engage with the users, and implement promotions often, you will gain visibility, attract new clients, and increase the number of repeat customers.

Otilia Dobos

Otilia Dobos is sometimes a content writer, other times a copywriter, but always produces high-quality content that helps clients up their marketing game. She devotes her attention to helping restaurant owners have a successful business with well-documented and SEO-optimized articles.

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