How Restaurants can Increase Engagement on Instagram


Instagram has become a powerful platform for restaurants to connect with their existing customers and to attract new ones.

Engagement is one of the most important metrics to keep an eye on if your aim is to build more of a relationship with your customer. Engagement determines the strength of your relationship with your audience and with Instagram it comes in the forms of likes, comments, shares etc.

The aim is to gain as much interaction with your posts as possible.

Previously we’ve talked about different ways you can use Instagram to interact with your audience - as well as some nifty examples detailing what kind of content you can post so now let’s see how we can make the most out of the content you’re spending time to create. We’ll delve into 3 areas to focus on, so let’s get cracking.

Post timing

Discovering the best times to post on Instagram will require some research, but the effort will be well worth it. Spend some time researching what times your competitors post and analyse the amount of engagement their posts are getting. This can give some insight into the sort of times your potential customers will be online.

Different audiences have varying online behaviours. As an example - audiences who consume sport related content will be online at different times compared to audiences who are looking at content based around food. Understanding your customer base’s peak hours will allow you to make posts when they are most likely to see and interact with your content.

With that being said, this doesn’t mean you’ve got to bump ‘clockwatching’ to the top of your to-do list. Thankfully, websites like Hootsuite can offer a Social Media Calendar, where you can schedule your posts in advance and maintain consistency without constant clockwatching.

It’s also important to be aware of events and holidays within your industry. As you’re running a restaurant, some examples of these would be national food holidays, valentines day, birthdays, seasonal menu additions, the list goes on.

Jumping on board to trends like this can widen the scope of your audience, introduce you to more online communities and provide you with more content to curate posts. Whether that’s coming up with a new spin on a classic favourite for National Cheeseburger Day, or creating an alcohol free drinks menu for Dry January - the possibilities are endless!

Post consistency

Consistency is key to maintaining a strong presence on Instagram. Instagram prioritises recency, so having a regular posting schedule is essential to stay visible in your followers feeds, however, the frequency of posts can vary depending on your business type and audience.

Posting frequently can offer more content for your online community. It also increases the likelihood of your followers seeing your posts, and helps build a stronger relationship with your customer base. Finding the right balance for posting will also take some research, as posting too often can overload your followers and sacrifice the quality of your content.

You can also drop a few £££’s on your posts and expose them to new audiences by boosting your post. By boosting your post, your content will appear on more feeds and be displayed as an ad to the customer base you’ve selected to advertise to. Instagram also gives the option of adding a call to action to your post which can then encourage more interaction with your advertisement, which can then pull more potential customers to your page.

Engaging with your audience

Your Instagram captions are just as important when in the realms of connecting with your audience. Avoid using business jargon and focus on creating engaging and personable captions to compliment your posts. It’s an additional opportunity you have to provide your customers with information.

Encourage interaction with your restaurant by asking questions, seeking feedback, or running a competition. Providing your community with reasons to engage will increase their interest in your restaurant.

Make sure you respond to queries in a timely manner as delayed responses can also steer potential customers away. We live in a very fast paced world and customers expect a prompt response. It shows that you value your customers' input. Just like above, this doesn’t require constant clockwatching. Managing your inbox shouldn’t be too hard to wiggle into your schedule if drawing new customers to your restaurant is your goal.


It’s important to remember there is no one-size-fits-all approach to Instagram marketing for restaurants. Understanding your customer base, conducting thorough research and testing different content types is all part of the package.By investing time and effort into these areas, you can create more relatable content, foster higher engagement and strengthen your restaurant’s online presence. Building an engaging instagram community will pay off in the long run, resulting in increased brand loyalty and attracting more customers to your restaurant.