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Surprisingly Facebook not Instagram dominates how catering firms use social media

Social media provides perfect platforms for food and drink businesses to engage with their customers, with 93% saying social media has positively impacted their business. This is according to a Pulse Survey from Bar supplies retailer, Nisbets, to establish the attitudes of catering businesses towards social media, The survey found that nearly half of respondents (48%) say digital methods are the best form of advertising – this compares with just one-third (34%) who cite word of mouth.

The survey found that Facebook is the most popular social media platform for catering businesses, with 81% claiming it is the most important tool for their marketing efforts. Twitter follows as the second most popular social media platform, with 20% believing it has helped their marketing strategy. Instagram is also on the rise, with18% of survey respondents saying that they use the platform.

Brand leaders

Different food and drink brands have their own approaches to social media marketing. For example, Nando’s has been ‘liked’ by almost 4.5 million people on its UK Facebook page and has around 1.5 million followers on its UK Twitter account. This shows the success of the brand’s efforts to drive social media engagement. One example of this was the ‘finger selfie’ (#fingerselfie) campaign. Essentially, this was about encouraging customers to tweet a photo of their best ‘finger selfie’ using a Nando's napkin while dining.

Greggs also succeeds in engaging its key audiences by using the power of interactive media. Greggs campaigns have featured in this magazine in its Good PR section, such as with its Gregory and Gregory campaign. According to the Greggs Annual Report 2017, the brand was up on sales by 7.4% to £960 million, which suggest that, whatever it is doing as part of its overall marketing strategy, it’s working.

Overall, social media is vital to the success of cafes, pubs, bars and restaurants all over the country. Used well, it offers unique opportunities to instantly captivate, reward and incentivise hungry and thirsty consumers.

Further information and background

For more Pulse findings click here, and here Nisbet offers further advice about social marketing social marketing tips for restaurants and food outlets. Information used in this feature was also gathered from these sources

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