Tags Posts tagged with "Instagram"

Instagram

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instagram food truck account

You might already have an Instagram account for your food truck. If you don’t, outside of the over 60 million photos shared daily and it being one of the most popular social media platforms, in the past we’ve provided reasons why your food truck should have an Instagram account.

Not only can it help you grow your mobile food business… if you use it correctly. If you think your account could use some clean up and/or tender loving care, check out our quick tips to improve your presence on the Instagram platform.

Use photos of more than food

If you’re running your food truck kitchen properly your food looks great, and you want to show it off to customers. But if picture after picture simply showcases plates full of food, there is a good chance your customers will end up getting bored. It’s important to take pictures of things other than food. Consider posting pictures of your staff members, your truck’s awesome wrap, promotions, and more. This will show your personality and makes your feed a lot more interesting.

Ask questions

Just like any other social media platform, it’s important to engage your customers and encourage them to share. One way you can do this is by asking questions and getting your customers to post their photos. You could ask customers to share images of them eating your food, or something as random as a picture of something they wish you had on your menu. This will get your followers involved in more than looking at your photos.

Don’t use crappy photos

Of course, this should go without saying, but it’s extra important: make sure your photos showcase your food truck’s brand. Poor food photos won’t get you more followers or encourage anyone to track down your truck to wait in line for something that looks unappetizing. You don’t necessarily have to hire a professional photographer, but you do need to make sure your truck and your food look great.

Use hashtags

Never forget about the power of the hashtag. Just like they work on Twitter and more recently on Facebook, hashtags can help your customers find you. For example, let’s say your food truck is based in Phoenix. By hashtagging your photo with #Phoenix or #PHX, anyone searching for that tag (including potential customers) will come across your photos.

Offer deals

Hey here’s an interesting twist…promotions! Give your current and prospective customers a reason to follow you. Sharing photos is great, but make sure your customers are also getting something. A recent trend I’ve noticed is trucks that share photos of their new promotions or share discount codes. If customers know they’ll be the first to find out about new deals, they’ll be more likely to follow you.

Instagram can be a great way to build business and increase sales, but only if you use it right! By using this guide, you can improve your food truck’s Instagram account immediately.

If you have any Instagram tips you’d like to share, please feel free to add them to the comment section below.

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instagram mistakes

With over 55 million pictures shared daily and 150 million monthly active users, there’s no denying that Instagram should be part of a food truck’s social media marketing strategy. That’s a huge audience that you can tap into by using Instagram to promote your food truck.

Be careful though, if used improperly your Instagram account could actually hurt your mobile food business. That is, unless you avoid the five most common Instagram mistakes.

Negligent Ownership

In this way, Instagram is just like any other social media platform. There’s no point in signing up for an account if you’re not active or engaged with your followers. A neglected account just makes you and your truck look lazy. If you haven’t bothered to post a picture in months, some customers might even assume you’re closed. Remember that there are millions of pictures being posted on Instagram every day, hour, and minute. If you don’t want to be forgotten, you need to post regularly.

Repeating Content

There’s nothing wrong with some self-promotion across multiple social media platforms. But if your Instagram account is nothing more than another place to show all of the same pictures you’ve posted on Facebook and Twitter, then what’s the point? Why would anyone follow you if they follow you elsewhere and the content is the same? Be sure you’re offering something different.

Not Editing Yourself

Of course you want to show off the food you are serving, but it’s important to make sure your food actually looks good. It’s way too easy to take poor quality food photos. You want to attract customers, not make them think twice about visiting your truck.

Lack Of Engagement

Just like every social media platform we’ve covered, we are going to stress that you need to be engaging your customers. If customers post pictures that relate to your truck, like them. Follow your customers and other businesses in your community. Try hosting a photo contest.  Actually interact with your customers instead of just posting photos.

Not Having Fun With It

Instagram is a great way to show off a side of your business other platforms can’t. Be careful not to only post carefully composed shots that don’t show customers anything new. Show off what’s happening at the grocery store, at the commissary or inside the truck. Customers want to get a sense of who you really are behind the scenes.

Instagram can be a great way to engage your current and prospective customers…if you do it right. Remember these tips and you can avoid five common Instagram mistakes.

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With new social media sites popping up all over the internet, it can be overwhelming to food truck owners to figure out which to focus their time and energy on. Based off a recent survey we conducted from our readers, the top four social media sites that food truck customers use are: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

social media sphereFacebook

After Myspace, Facebook took control of social media and has not let go. 67% of internet users visit Facebook regularly so you’ll want to start here.

Beneficial Features:

About section. Publish a full biography including contact information about your food truck.

Large images. Facebook’s platform is great for posting pictures. Take a snapshot of your daily special or fun events your truck has taken part in.

Advertise. Facebook Ads allow you to target your specific demographic while also setting a specific budget.

Twitter

Next in line is Twitter. Quick and to the point. Reach out and communicate with others in real time. While Facebook may be used for many of the same purposes, Twitter is much quicker.

Beneficial Features:

Break the news. Let your followers know where you are heading when it happens. Twitter is instantaneous and will reach your followers faster than any other social networks.

Get feedback. Twitter is also a great place to get feedback and learn about your customers.

Utilize hashtags. Hashtags (commonly known as the pound sign) on Twitter are a great system to take advantage of. Using hashtags will increase the reach of your tweet and also increase the chances of your tweet being seen.

Pinterest

Like it? Then pin it! Pinterest is a great way to tell your story using pictures. Pinterest allows you to collect, organize and pin pictures to boards.

Beneficial Features:

Organize. Pinterest allows you to organize your photos into similar groups called “boards.” This allows you to “build” a message, theme or group similar photos together.

Get customer’s mouths watering. Food trucks using Pinterest can organize a page by posting enticing photos with brief descriptions about menu items. This can also include recipes to popular items.

Go beyond food. Your food truck should be about more than just food. Feature boards that tell your brand story, values and mission.

Instagram

Pictures speak a thousand words – and Instagram is the poor man’s photography studio. Instagram gives users the ability to apply different filters to photos. There are no groups or “boards” like with Pinterest, however, Instagram is easily integrated into Facebook and Twitter, giving pictures extra exposure on the different social networks.

Beneficial Features:

Customers. Featuring customers enjoying their meals, or sharing images that customers have taken of your truck are a great way to draw attention to your mobile food business.

Show your atmosphere. Show pictures of the atmosphere around your truck. You can show actual customers enjoying a dining experience or even the fun they are having while waiting to order. The filters provided by Instagram will allow you to spruce it up a bit.

Aesthetics. You don’t necessarily have to show pictures related to your food. What’s the atmosphere like around your truck? What about the scenery of the areas you park in?

Remember social media is a great way advertise. Follow some of these tips and utilize them to increase followers and customers. But don’t be afraid to be creative and innovative. Also, remember most social media sites can be synced together and it’s alright if some of your pages overlap.

Which social media sites are you using that aren’t listed here?

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food truck tip of the day

tip of the day

Since we came out and suggested food truck owners should adopt Instagram usage in today’s feature article, here are some tips to help you get the most out of Instagram.

  • Use images to tell a story, not blast your branding. Since food trucks sell products off your menu, make sure the images you use are about the experience of visiting and eating from your truck, and not a product placement ad. There’s not a lot of tolerance for marketing that’s obviously marketing. Keep it subtle and keep the focus on your customers.
  • Most photos fall into two categories: beautiful imagery or humor. Make sure your Instagram photos fall into one of these categories. Most users aren’t posting all their random party pics to their Instagram stream and you should exercise similar constraint. Photo albums in that vein are for Facebook. Think of your Instagram photos as high value/low volume.
  • Don’t post too often. A general rule, don’t post more than three photos in a row or one every three hours. Also, unlike Facebook, the commitment level to an account is low—”unfollows” can happen frequently. Don’t automatically share your Instagram photos—editorially select and customize each one for the appropriate platform.
  • Choose an account name that’s the same as your Twitter handle. Having the same Instagram account name and Twitter handle serves two purposes. One—your profile will be easily recognizable and easy to find. And two—if you are tagged by another user in a caption and that photo is shared on Twitter, that tag will link to your Twitter profile. It ensures that tagging makes sense when an Instagram photo is shared on other networks.
  • Use hashtags. Like on Twitter, hashtagging photos enables discovery of your profile by users outside of your primary connections. You can use the search functionality on the app to find out which hashtags are often used. Like on Twitter, hashtagging Instagram photos by event, geolocation, or subject matter is a good idea.
  • Set up an account on a web-based viewer. Instagram’s focus continues to be all about the mobile experience, but the app recently added the ability to view individual photos on the web through a shareable link. This feature allows your food truck’s Instagram stream to not only be seen by those not using the app, but allows those who do have an account to like and comment on a shared photo right from the web. However, using a separate web-based viewer can help you manage your presence and track your progress.

 

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instagram food truck

Instagram is a mobile photo editing and sharing app that has seen its user base explode from 15 to 100 million since Facebook acquired the company last April. But even before the acquisition, many savvy brands had joined the platform—especially retail brands with stunning visual content. Food trucks are a natural fit for both the platform technology and Instagram’s user base.

However, unlike Facebook or Twitter, Instagram doesn’t have business-specific profiles, built-in visibility or engagement metrics, or paid advertising options.

So why should your food truck join yet another social network?

Simple…

Ease of Use

Instagram’s technology helps you easily create stunning images that you can easily use on your food truck’s other social networks.

Both Facebook and Twitter have optimized how photos are displayed on these platforms and you can share directly from Instagram to those platforms (as well as to Tumblr, Foursquare, Flickr, and email) automatically or by individual selection.

Tell Your Story

Both the way the platform works and the way most users approach the platform allows you to employ visual storytelling that has more continuity and artistic value than other platforms.

With the absence of advertising, business uses for an Instagram profile begin and end with awareness and branding. However, a few images that encapsulate a brand moment in a second or two is much more impactful than lines and lines of copy—no matter how brilliant the writing is.

It’s Mobile – Like You

Instagram combines two of the most powerful forces in the social technology market—mobile and photo sharing—to create a platform that truly offers a unique value proposition. Food Truck owners with an Instagram presence can take advantage of that intersection where users are focusing their attention.

Are you wondering how a food truck might be able to take advantage of Instagram to promote your business? Here’s an easy concept NYC based Comodo restaurant used. They were able to bring in more business with the hashtag #ComodoMenu: an operation for visitors to snap photos of their plates and share them on Instagram so others could get a glimpse of what they could order. The YouTube video announcement has accumulated 122,000 views in just under 3 months, in addition to the  many publications (include us now) that reported on the restaurant’s creative initiative.

The bottom line is this, as the old adage goes—a picture is worth 1,000 words. This statement is still true today, but with Instagram, a picture may also be worth 1,000 “likes,” retweets, and shares.

Are you already using Instagram for your food truck business? Tell us how you you’ve used it to help promote your rolling bistro in the comment section below.

 

 

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