Top 10 Social Media Tips for Food & Beverage Industry in Malaysia
The past few months have been rough for those in the food and beverage industry. And, despite the abundance of opinions on the topic, no one really knows what the future will hold. My in-boxes on all platforms are overflowing with requests for assistance from restaurants, cafés and home bakers. As such, I’m writing this quick note with some initial suggestions on where to begin with social media marketing.
Top 10 Social Media Tips for the Food & Beverage Industry Malaysia
1. Make sure your details on your social media pages are up-to-date.
Ensure your opening hours and contact details are accurate. With rules changing, potential customers need to know when you are open and when you are not. Be clear. Check it daily.
2. Make sure your website is up-to-date.
If you don’t want to change it regularly, at least have links to your social media pages telling potential customers where the latest updates can be found.
3. Don’t put crappy photos on your social media feed!
If it’s not good, don’t post it.
4. Get quality photos.
Take photos in natural daylight (mornings or late afternoons are best for lighting). Get your branding in at least some of your photos. If you’re not capable, get someone who is. If you choose to share photos that someone else has taken (that you haven’t contracted and paid to take), FIRST ask permission, and then be sure to give credit in the caption (not just a tag in the photo). It is theft if you don’t.
5. Update your feed regularly.
Post an update at least once a week. Try to make your updates nice photos with great captions. Don’t post too many banners, ads or flyer-looking content. Keep those for special menus such as Mother’s Day and Christmas.
6. Respond to messages.
Whatever platform you are using, whether it be Instagram, Facebook or something else, be sure to be quick to respond to enquiries. Also, reply to comments left on your page.
7. Build relationships with your customers.
Ask if it’s okay to take photos of your regulars. Quote them in comments (with their permission, of course). Make it easy for customers to take photos by ensuring good lighting (as mentioned, natural daylight is best. In the evenings, have good ambient lighting). Make sure your social media handles are visible on the menu/ table. Set up areas for photo taking. Offer a free item or discount when customers share your outlet on social media. Thank them for doing so. Make them feel part of your success.
8. Don’t spam your followers or people on your contact list!
If customers have given you the trust of their contact do NOT abuse it. Frequent, unsolicited advertisements are a sure way to lose patrons quickly.
9. Engage with bloggers/ influencers.
Consider the price it would cost you to hire a copywriter to write professional text, a photographer to take beautiful photos, a marketing company to build an audience, and the price of running advertisements online. Sharing a meal with social media professionals is a tiny exchange of goods for services.
10. Choose the right social media collaborators for YOUR service.
Just as the food and beverage industry is diverse, so are the goals, audience and content of collaborators. Study and select the ones that best fit your niche audience. Look at the quality of writing, photographs and content. Do they take photos of themselves or focus more on the product? Does it match your target demographic?
Once you’ve narrowed it down, write to each one personally (no group emails). Briefly describe your business and why you think you are a match to their content. ASK what their terms and conditions for coverage are. As mentioned, your potential partners are just as diverse as the food and beverage industry is. For some, this is their primary income, others don’t monetize at all.
Never randomly send a “gift” and assume you’ll get coverage. Again ASK (in captial letters) what you would need to do, send or pay in order to get specific types of coverage. Posting an Instastory is very different to curating a post on Instagram or Facebook, and very different again to creating content for a post on a website.
I hope these top 10 social media tips for the food and beverage industry in Malaysia have been useful. If you have any more suggestions, kindly share your knowledge in the comment box below. And, if you’re a business, have ticked all of the above and are still looking for more help, check out some of our professional friends here: Little White Rice, Angela Carson and Xavier Mah Consultancy.