A survey by MGH Advertising showed that 36% of TikTok users visited or ordered food from a restaurant after seeing a video about the restaurant – and the video wasn’t always from the restaurant itself, but from another TikTok account. Kam Hing Bakery in New York estimates a 20% increase in business after customers started uploading content to the social media platform (via Eater NY). Even TikTok itself was inspired to enter the food industry, announcing a partnership with Virtual Dining Concepts to bring viral recipes — like baked feta pasta — to homes across the United States (via Bloomberg).
Bar & Restaurant advises restaurants to use TikTok to connect with customers and build stronger brands. Restaurants can display special items, partner with influencers, and advertise special offers. Using a similar approach, Chipotle has become the most followed food brand through branded hashtag challenges and strategic partnerships, according to Insider.
The advantage for restaurants is that even with a small number of subscribers, a downloaded video can go viral – an ideal promise for small stores with limited resources. AMR Digital Marketing CEO Analiese Ross confirms the possibility, telling Insider, “…you can have 200 followers on TikTok and have a video go viral, and it gets a million views and that changes completely. all for you.”
Sometimes starting small is better than nothing at all.