Even with the global rise of social media platforms like TikTok, Instagram is still immensely popular. Instagram currently has more than two billion monthly users.
That’s more than one-third of the entire world's population logging into Instagram every month. And you can tap into this massive audience to promote your restaurant business.
How? Using Instagram Reels.
In this guide, we’ll explain how to promote your business, get more views on Reels, and drive more foot traffic to your restaurant.
Why Instagram Reels are important for restaurants
Instagram Reels have quickly gained popularity. And for good reason. This short-form video feature allows your restaurant to:
- Engage with your audience in a creative and interactive way.
- Provide a peek into behind-the-scenes moments.
- Showcase their unique dishes.
- Share new menu items.
Instagram Reels are the perfect opportunity for restaurants to tap into a new avenue of marketing (one that's visually appealing and highly engaging). And in an industry where visual appeal helps draw in new patrons, it’s an avenue worth pursuing.
But with all these new avenues come new responsibilities. Enter the importance of social media management.
Social media management for small businesses plays a pivotal role in implementing effective tactics to build a following on social media and turn that following into engaged users. The goal? These users turn into paying customers.
With the right strategies, like creating visually appealing content, showcasing mouthwatering dishes, and sharing behind-the-scenes glimpses, you can attract a larger audience with your Reels.
Here's an example of Instagram Reels that do exactly that:
As a result, proper social media management techniques empower you to create a strong online presence, increase brand visibility, and ultimately attract more customers to your restaurant. The results? Long-term business growth and success. Music to any business owner’s ears.
Understanding the Instagram algorithm for Reels
To learn how to get more views on Reels, it's important to understand how the algorithm works.
The algorithm determines which Reels to show users based on engagement, relevancy, and timeliness. Consistent posting is undoubtedly one of the best tactics to increase Instagram Reel views for your restaurant business.
However, gaining traction and views can be challenging when starting with a fresh Instagram account. That's where the importance of getting the first 1K followers on Insta comes into play.
By hitting this milestone, your account gains credibility and visibility, making reaching a wider audience easier for your Reels.
Investing effort into building your initial following will set the stage for more significant Reel views and boost your restaurant business's online presence. With that in mind, let’s dive into fifteen tried and true strategies for how to get more views on Reels.
Food Marketing and Sales
Marketing and promoting your food business require following a strategic step-by-step process. Get them here to boost your sales with more hungry customers walking through your restaurant's doors.
WHAT YOU'LL LEARN...
- 10 Tips To Boost Your Restaurant Sales
- 8 Restaurant Marketing Tips to Stand Out
- Top 5 Tips to Improve Online Reviews for Your Restaurant
- Restaurant Blog: 5 Reasons Why This Boosts Restaurant Sales (+Tips)
- 8 Tips for Using Video to Promote Your Restaurant
- How to Use Video Marketing to Promote Your Restaurant
- Email Marketing for Restaurant Success: Comprehensive Guide
- 15 Tactics to Get More Instagram Reel Views for Your Restaurant Business
- How to Create A Successful Restaurant Loyalty Program
- Ten Essential Restaurant KPIs: What to Track for Success
1. Develop a framework for creating valuable content
Before diving into how to get more views on Reels, it's essential to develop a framework for creating valuable content.
Consider what type of content would resonate with your target audience and align with your restaurant's branding.
Whether showcasing your most popular dishes, sharing cooking tips, or featuring customer testimonials, having a clear content strategy will help you create Reels that grab attention and keep viewers engaged.
Ideally, this is how your Instagram Reels collection should look:
By sharing valuable content (think: mouth-watering videos), you establish yourself as a worthy contender for people when they’re hungry, and you’ll entice them to join you for their next meal. It’s a simple way to promote your restaurant.
- Experiment with different content formats to find out what resonates most with your audience.
- Develop a content strategy before posting on Instagram.
- Align your content with your restaurant brand guide.
2. Use popular audio tracks in your Reels
One of the key features of Instagram Reels is the ability to add popular audio tracks to your videos. Take advantage of this feature by using trending or popular songs that resonate with your target audience.
The right audio track can enhance the viewing experience and make your Reels more enjoyable and shareable.
When selecting audio tracks, consider the mood and style you want to convey. If your restaurant has a fun and energetic atmosphere, choose upbeat and catchy songs. On the other hand, if you want to create a more intimate and cozy vibe, opt for mellow tracks.
You can use a voice-over service to enhance the professionalism of your content. This service allows you to add realistic and engaging synthetic voices to your Reels, making the videos more engaging and interesting to your audience.
For instance, have a professional voice reviewing the images of the dishes you offer, explaining the ingredients and recipe to make your followers want to try your restaurant.
- Consider using a voice-over service to add a personal touch to your content.
- See which audio tracks are currently trending with your target demographic.
- Select popular audio tracks that reflect the mood and style of your Reels.
3. Embed IG Reels on your website
To maximize the reach of your Instagram Reels, consider embedding them on your restaurant's website.
Doing so lets you showcase your Reels to website visitors and potential customers who may not follow you on Instagram. Embedding Reels on your website also provides an additional opportunity for engagement and encourages visitors to explore more of your content.
To embed an Instagram Reel on your website, simply navigate to the Reel you want to embed, click on the three dots at the top right corner of the video, and select the "Embed" option.
Copy the embed code and paste it into the HTML of your website where you want the Reel to appear. This simple step can help you increase the visibility of your Reels and attract more views.
- It’s easier to embed an IG reel code using a content management system (CMS) like WordPress or a website builder (Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, etc).
- Embedding your IG Reels on your website can help draw more exposure to your Reels.
- You can easily copy and paste the Embed code anywhere on your website.
4. Strive to create short and concise Reels
In the fast-paced world of social media, attention spans are shorter than ever. To grab and retain viewers' attention, aim to create Reels anywhere between 7–15 seconds that are concise and impactful.
By keeping your Reels short and sweet, you increase the likelihood of viewers watching them in their entirety and engaging with your content. But for this you need to understand how to create content so that it is interesting to the audience.
When creating Reels under 20 seconds, focus on capturing the most captivating moments, showcasing your best dishes, or delivering a quick and valuable message.
Avoid unnecessary fluff and get straight to the point. Remember, less is often more when creating engaging Instagram Reels.
- As the age-old saying goes, people have the attention span of a goldfish.
- Use an engaging hook to get your audience’s attention right away.
- Get to the point and create bite-sized IG Reels.
5. Don't forget about the hashtags
Hashtags play a crucial role in increasing the discoverability of your Instagram Reels. You can reach a wider audience and attract more views by including relevant and popular hashtags in your Reels' captions.
Research popular hashtags within the food and restaurant industry and incorporate them into your Reels to increase their visibility.
When selecting hashtags for how to get more views on Reels, opt for a mix of broad and niche hashtags.
Broad hashtags like #food and #restaurant can help you reach a larger audience, while niche hashtags like #foodphotography or #foodiegram can help you target a more specific group of users likely interested in your food content.
Pullman Standard does an excellent job mixing and matching hashtags in their burger Reel:
Make sure to try different combinations of hashtags to find the ones that work best for your restaurant.
- Specific hashtags are more useful for reaching a more precise group of people.
- Hashtags are still a very important aspect of social media marketing.
- Broad hashtags help to reach a large group of interested followers.
6. Produce a short commercial video
Instagram Reels offer an excellent opportunity to create short commercial videos that showcase your restaurant's unique selling points. Use Reels to highlight your signature dishes, special promotions, or unique dining experiences.
By showcasing your restaurant in a visually appealing and engaging way, you can entice viewers to visit your establishment and try out your offerings.
When creating a commercial video, pay attention to the visual aesthetics. Use high-quality images and videos that accurately represent your restaurant's ambiance and food.
Incorporate enthusiastic captions and call to action phrases to encourage viewers to take the desired action, such as visiting your website or making a reservation.
By producing compelling commercial videos, you can attract more views and convert viewers into customers.
- Your commercial video should also represent your restaurant's unique aspects.
- Keep your commercial video engaging, more like a movie than an ad.
- A commercial video can help bring awareness to your restaurant.
7. Post when your followers are most active
Timing is everything on social media. Post videos when your followers are most active to maximize the visibility and engagement of your Reels.
Analyze your social media to determine the peak times your audience is online and schedule your Reels accordingly.
Here's some helpful information from OptinMonster to help you get started:
By posting at the right time, you increase the likelihood of your Reels appearing in your followers' feeds and being seen by a larger audience.
Make sure to experiment with different posting times and track the performance of your Reels to identify the optimal posting schedule for your restaurant.
- While data tends to vary on the subject, there are times when IG users are most active.
- Friday between 10 and 11am is also a great time to post IG content.
- Wednesday is the best overall day to post.
8. Use the captions to ask questions
Captions are an often overlooked but powerful tool for increasing engagement on Instagram Reels. Instead of simply providing a description of your Reel, use the captions to ask questions and encourage viewers to leave comments.
Oreo does this all the time on their Reels:
By asking thought-provoking questions, you can spark conversations, gather feedback, and create a sense of community around your restaurant.
When crafting captions, consider the type of questions that'll resonate with your audience.
Ask for their favorite dishes, request suggestions for new menu items, or inquire about their dining experiences. By actively engaging with your audience through captions, you can foster a loyal and interactive community on Instagram. And you increase the potential to land customer reviews.
- Don’t ask generic questions. Be specific and pose juicy questions to entice your audience to engage with your content.
- You should use your captions to ask questions once in a while.
- Avoid missing out on this aspect of your post.
9. Create recipe videos and ASMR content
Instagram Reels provide a unique opportunity to showcase your culinary expertise and engage with food enthusiasts.
Consider creating recipe videos demonstrating how to prepare your restaurant's signature dishes.
Share step-by-step instructions, cooking tips, and secret ingredients to captivate your audience and entice them to recreate the dishes at home.
In addition to recipe content, consider exploring the world of Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR) in your Reels.
ASMR videos are known for their soothing and relaxing nature, often featuring the sounds of food being prepared or consumed.
If you ever need some inspiration on how to create this type of content, you can always learn from Tasty:
By incorporating ASMR elements into your Reels, you can tap into a growing trend and attract viewers who enjoy the sensory experience of food.
- Combine recipe content and ASMR to create irresistible content for your audience.
- Recipe content is also engaging and satisfying for people to watch.
- ASMR is very popular among Millenials and Gen Zs.
10. Team up with food influencers
Collaborating with food influencers can significantly boost the visibility and reach of your Instagram Reels. Identify influencers within your niche who align with your restaurant's brand and values.
Reach out to them and propose a collaboration where they create Reels featuring your restaurant's dishes or dining experience.
When working with influencers, provide them with clear guidelines and expectations for the Reels.
Make sure that the content they create aligns with your restaurant's branding and resonates with their audience. By leveraging the existing audience of influencers and localizing your content, you can expose your restaurant to a wider demographic and attract more views to your Reels.
- Influencer marketing is constantly growing as most modern audiences look to social media for buying advice.
- Only hire influencers who represent the values your business stands for.
- Also, make sure there's a clear overlap between both audiences.
10. Team up with food influencers
Consistency is key to building a strong brand presence on Instagram. Ensure your Instagram Reels align with your restaurant's overall branding, including color schemes, fonts, and visual style.
Consistency in branding helps create a cohesive and recognizable identity, making it easier for viewers to associate your Reels with your restaurant
Consider visual elements such as filters, overlays, and captions when creating Reels. Use consistent fonts and colors that match your restaurant to create a seamless and professional look.
You can check out Instagram’s branding guide to learn how to create your own:
- The more uniform your content is, the more your followers can easily differentiate you from your competitors.
- Create a brand guide to ensure all your content matches your restaurant’s online image.
- Branding is extremely important in keeping your IG content uniform and consistent.
12. Promote direct ordering if possible
If your restaurant offers online ordering or delivery services, Instagram Reels can be an effective platform to promote these services.
Use your Reels to showcase your menu items and encourage viewers to place an order directly through your website or preferred delivery platform.
By simplifying the ordering process (think convenience), you can attract more customers and increase your revenue.
When promoting direct ordering, be clear and concise in your Reels. Include a call-to-action that directs viewers to your website or ordering platform.
Highlight any special promotions or discounts for online orders to incentivize viewers to act. You can drive more sales and grow your customer base by leveraging Instagram Reels for direct ordering promotion.
- If your restaurant appeals to Millennials, you should focus on providing a convenient service.
- Use custom IG buttons to promote your direct ordering services if possible.
- Direct ordering from IG is extremely convenient for all kinds of customers.
13. Keep your food presentation visuals pristine
In the world of food, presentation is everything. Instagram Reels provide an excellent opportunity to showcase your restaurant's beautifully plated dishes and visually appealing food presentations.
Invest time and effort in creating visually stunning videos that capture the essence of your culinary creations.
When shooting your Reels, pay attention to the lighting, angles, and composition. Use natural lighting whenever possible to showcase your dishes' true colors and textures.
Here's a great example:
Experiment with different camera angles to find the most flattering perspectives. Consider using props, garnishes, and plating techniques that enhance the visual appeal of your food.
By creating visually pristine Reels, you can captivate viewers and make their mouths water.
- Just like people eat first with their eyes, they're also very judgemental about IG content.
- If you’re creating food content, invest in a quality camera and video editing software.
- Finally, make sure your grid is pristine and compelling for your followers.
14. Share behind-the-scenes content
People are curious by nature, and behind-the-scenes content has a way of captivating their attention. Use Instagram Reels to offer a glimpse into the inner workings of your restaurant.
Showcase the hardworking kitchen staff, the process of preparing a dish from start to finish, or the careful plating techniques employed by your chefs.
When posting behind-the-scenes content, aim to create a sense of authenticity and transparency. It’s the secret recipe for success.
Adele’s does a great job letting their followers see what goes into making their famous Gnocchi:
Show the human side of your restaurant and the passion that goes into every dish. By sharing behind-the-scenes moments, you create a connection with your audience and make them feel like insiders.
- Behind-the-scenes content is a great way to show off your restaurant’s transparency.
- Strive to make this content as relatable and authentic as possible.
- This kind of content is also very easy to create.
15. Don't be afraid of memes
Memes have become an integral part of internet culture, and they can be a powerful tool for increasing engagement on Instagram Reels.
Memes are relatable, humorous, and highly shareable. Incorporating memes into your Reels can help you connect with your audience on a more personal level and make your content more memorable.
Just like this:
When using memes, ensure they're relevant to your restaurant and align with your brand's tone and personality. Avoid using memes that may be offensive or controversial.
Look for memes that resonate with your target audience and have the potential to go viral. By embracing memes in your Reels, you can inject humor and entertainment into your content and attract more views and engagement.
- Keep some classic food memes in your arsenal to reach all kinds of audiences.
- Memes are the new GIFs of the internet, unlocking your ticket to viral content.
- Study the trends on which memes are the most popular on IG right now.
FREE Resources for Restaurant Owners
Turn Instagram Reel views into loyal restaurant patrons
Instagram Reels offer an incredible opportunity for restaurants to showcase their unique offerings, engage with their audience, and attract more customers.
By implementing these 15 actionable strategies on how to get more views on Reels, you can master the reel game and skyrocket your restaurant's Instagram views.