How to serve Instagram-worthy takeaway food

Mike Hardman is the Marketing Manager at catering equipment wholesaler Alliance Online. Here, he explains how you can ensure your fast food restaurant attracts more millennials by making your takeaway dishes more Instagrammable.

Millennials have a strong preference for convenience and spend more time eating in restaurants than any other generation, according to a report released by the US Department of Agriculture. The same research also found that the spending power of millennials will surpass that of baby boomers this year. So, if you want to ensure you capitalise on this, you need to ensure you’re doing everything you can to attract young people to your takeaway restaurant.

One way to do this is by ensuring your restaurant’s dishes and interior décor are Instagram-worthy. Many young people like to share everything — from what they’re wearing to where they’re going on holiday — on social media, which means they’re always on the lookout for the best possible photo opportunities. So, if your takeaway looks quite bland and your dishes don’t challenge the status quo, you might struggle to get young people through your door.

Of course, if you’ve never had to take the Instagram factor into account, you might not know where to start with making your food more photogenic. So, I’m going to share my top tips to help you out. Read on to learn more.

Keep an eye out for trends you can follow

New food trends are emerging all of the time, and many of these are picked up by Instagrammers looking to show that they’re ahead of the curve. So, if you want to ensure that people who visit your takeaway get shutter happy, it’s well worth keeping an eye out for trends that are gaining traction online, so you can incorporate these into your menu.

Of course, while there are lots of trends out there that you could jump on, it’s best to only go with those that actually make sense for your takeaway. So, if your menu is primarily made up of burgers and chips, you shouldn’t start offering acai bowls and avocado on toast out of nowhere. But, instead, you could jump on board with the trend of offering more Instagram-friendly vegetarian and vegan options, or you could add a burger to your menu that comes in a bright green matcha bun. While these small tweaks won’t mean you have to change your menu too much, following the trends that make sense for your business is sure to impress the Instagram generation.

Remember that presentation is everything

How your food is presented will go a long way to determining whether your takeaway is going to become the next Instagram hotspot. So, it’s well worth putting some time and effort into getting this right. It’s also vital that all of your kitchen staff are briefed on any changes you would like to make, and that everyone knows your goals when it comes to making food that is guaranteed to be a hit on Instagram.

As a general rule, the more colourful your takeaway dishes look, the more Instagrammable they’re going to be. So, wherever possible, it’s a good idea to go heavy on the vegetables, and you should also put plenty of thought into the packaging you use for your takeaway food. Plain polystyrene boxes and foil trays aren’t going to cut it. Instead, opt for food boxes, bags, and wraps in a bright or pastel colour. These should also be decorated with your logo and branding so, when your customers post the food they’ve bought from you on Instagram, their followers will be able to see exactly where they got their lovely takeaway from.

Make sure you have your own Instagram presence

If your takeaway isn’t currently attracting the younger clientele you would like to target, you’ll need to get the ball rolling by ensuring people know your establishment has had an Instagram-friendly update. And, you can do this by making your own account and updating it with plenty of envy-inducing photos. So, if you’ve focused on enhancing your menu, post plenty of high-quality images of the food you’re serving. If you’ve already given your décor a social media-worthy update, you can mix things up with some photos of your eatery, too.

To ensure you know exactly how to show your food in the best light, I would highly recommend checking out BBC Good Food’s guide to taking the best food photos for Instagram. Then, you can simply jump online and start sharing!

If you’re looking to attract the younger generation to your takeaway, updating your menu to make it more Instagrammable can make a huge difference. Take these tips on board, and you’ll soon have millennials queueing up to try your trendy dishes.

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