Trending in social media is nothing new but how did some of the most popular trends become so viral? Today we will look at a trend, that our friend Instagram brought to the forefront of our lives, that has the ability to not only be eye catching, delicious, and good for business – but downright annoying, as well. Let me introduce you to #foodstagramming: verb; The process by which one takes a photo of their meal with the sole purpose of flaunting its deliciousness on social media sites.
We all have that friend who makes us wait before a meal so they may document the event. You and your fellow tummy rumblers might have started to wonder: What is it that makes this trend so enticing? Surely it can’t be the act of eating itself? Can it be the colors the food brings to the table that make this a necessary routine, or is it done with malicious intent to show what one is having while another goes without? What makes a food photo worthy to begin with and are there prerequisites your meal must meet before you pull out the camera? – The world may just never know. What we do know, however, is that this trend is here to stay so we might as well make use of it!
Whether you are staying in for dinner or going out – chances are someone in your click will take a picture of their meal. Taking part in this simple act is a great way to sell a product in the food and restaurant indsutries. Although this may seem like an obvious statement, it is easy to overlook the true reach that social media has. Imagine going to Jack’s Urban Eats and ordering a plate of delicious Urban Fries covered in bleu cheese and red pepper flakes…(chances are you are getting hungry just from hearing that). Now what if I posted that picture on Instagram and you saw it? Chances are that my picture had a greater affect on you than my descriptive statement and now you are probably planning your next trip to Jacks! Why is this important to the restaurant industry? It’s simple – that one individual posted one picture that reached 100+, who then posted to their 100+ causing the same mouth watering effect on almost everyone – resulting in free word of mouth marketing and increased sales. As you can see, there is a silver lining to this craze.
Although knowingly discouraging free marketing, some restaurants have decided to fight back against this movement by placing a ban on foodstagramming! (The nerve!) They are less concerned with the advertising of their food, and more focused on creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for which their customers can relax. They worry that constant flashes of light, and maybe cell phone use in general, can be distracting to your fellow tablemates and to those guests around you. At the especially fancy restaurants (you know the ones you REALLY want to prove you were at), it can be thought to cheapen the experience and take away from the true interactions customers came to enjoy. Not only do they want you to put your phone down for others, but these restaurants also want YOU to enjoy the experience first-hand instead of through a camera lens.
There is no doubt that this social movement has impacted our lives and flooded our newsfeeds making it almost impossible to ignore. Whether you believe this trend is an act of self-centeredness or a brilliant ploy to market and advertise while sparking an appetite – it’s up to you. For those in need of a foodstagramming intervention, please feel free to call our direct line for love and support. For everyone else, though, please move forward with care and remember to keep calm and [#foodporn, #YUM #foodstagram] on!
By: Dana Andersen, Creatine Marketing