Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are changing the way restaurants interact and engage with diners. Through these channels, restaurants can give customers the inside scoop, run contests, offer discounts, and receive feedback.

One way to interact with customers is through the use of hashtags. Hashtags are a great way for restaurants to reach a larger audience with their social updates. Take advantage of popular foodie, local, and cuisine-specific hashtags to help your posts show up in searches for relevant phrases.

Including popular, trending hashtags can also help improve your social follower count and get new eyes on your content. Boosting your restaurants’ social presence with hashtags can also encourage existing diners to share their experience on social and bring some new customers in!

Let’s take a look at some of the most popular restaurant hashtags to help boost your marketing effort:



From decadent dishes to extravagant drinks, the 78+ million #Foodie users love sharing their experiences with other fellow foodies and showcasing the food they are about to indulge in.



This wildly popular hashtag is great for showcasing delicious-looking, over-the-top dishes from your restaurant.



#Foodstagram users post high-quality photographs of their food. This hashtag is versatile, and can apply to posts about menu items or more general posts about the restaurant.

Duck breast @cafeartscience @chef.carolina

A post shared by HHY Photo (@hhyphoto) on



Try using #wine to promote a restaurant’s happy hour or wine list. Osteria Mamma’s uses the hashtag #winewednesday to showcase their bottle of the week.



#Vegan users showcase their healthy, clean eating lifestyle. Whether your entire restaurant is vegan or just has a few vegan options on the menu, this hashtag can entice users looking for a restaurant with dietary options.



The #pizza hashtag users tag deliciously cheesy images of their favorite pies. Use this hashtag to share a picture or video of your most popular pizza on social media.



Another cuisine-specific hashtag, #sushi users often share their shots of different roll types.

Earn your maki stripes

A post shared by Naoki Sushi (@naokisushichi) on



This hashtag showcases decadent and extravagant #dessert posts that will entice users’ to stay for a sweet treat after dinner.


Best Practices for Hashtag Use

These hashtags are a great place to start, but it’s important to be original with your tags too. Try creating branded or longer hashtags to include in your posts. Branded hashtags can be as simple as the name of your restaurant, but are also an opportunity to get creative.

Dunkin Donuts, for example, created a campaign that encouraged users to share photos of sad lunches with the hashtag #UpgraDDe on Instagram. Select users were then chosen to receive a Dunkin Donuts gift card.

Location-specific hashtags can also help to improve the reach of your content to users searching nearby.

Before using any new hashtag, make sure it won’t be misinterpreted or bring negative attention to your restaurant. A few years ago, Entenmann’s used the hashtag #NotGuilty to encourage users to share their low-calorie indulgences. What they didn’t realize is this same hashtag circulated after the Casey Anthony trial, causing them to pull it down immediately.

Another best practice is to avoid overloading your posts with tons of hashtags – instead, include a few targeted and relevant tags. When users search for #sushi, they don’t want to see results about pizza or dessert.

A recent Buffer study found Twitter and Facebook users should use 1-2 hashtags per post (any more than that, and engagement levels actually drop). Instagram posts, on the other hand, should include more hashtags as interactions are highest with posts that have 11+ hashtags on this visual platform.


Final Thoughts

Social hashtags are a great way to spread awareness about your restaurant, improve customer engagement and even entice new customers to visit – happy posting!


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