To become a successful private chef, you’ll need to learn how to harness the marketing power of social media. By sharing photos and stories of your culinary adventures, you can start to highlight your talent, and ultimately attract new customers.
Before you start posting images of your dishes on social media using your iPhone or Android device, you should invest in a modest DSLR camera. Because it’s difficult for potential customers to taste your food through the internet (we’re working on it), you’ll want to share only the best high-quality photos of your creations. Also, consider procuring interesting new silverware and flatware, so you can portray e a more intriguing presentation of your food.
While there are many different social media outlets available for self-promotion, some are better suited for personal chefs. Here’s a list of what we believe are the top four social media platforms you should use to market your home chef business in 2017:
Did you know that you can create a business page from your personal Facebook account? Even if you have a robust website for your business, Facebook can act as a secondary outlet for attracting new clients in your area of expertise or location. Your Facebook page is a great outlet for sharing blogs and conversing with your fans.
Also, Facebook Business Pages have powerful paid advertising tools that allow you to target specific demographics based on countless criteria: from shopping habits and page likes to age range and geographic location.
Additionally, Facebook lets you control how much you spend on advertising, and fundamentally, the goal of each campaign. When your campaign is complete, you’ll receive vital information within the insights for your page and the success of your marketing efforts.
Since 2011, Pinterest has been one of the best social media resources for personal chefs. Pinterest allows you to create visual collections of fun and creative ideas, recipes, and culinary experiences. A Pinterest business account requires that you initially create five boards. As a home chef, this should be an easy task; you could create one board for the restaurants you recommend, another for your favorite appetizers, a board about culinary world travels, themes for dinner parties, and so on. We just gave you four ideas – what’s your fifth?
Pinterest also allows you to decide where your images link back to — your blog or website, Instagram, or most anywhere else, really. By developing creative and organized boards, descriptive captions, and using hashtags, you can start to boost your search engine rankings, while gaining more exposure for your culinary creations.
Another fantastic image sharing resource is Instagram. If you think you don’t need it, think again. Instagram has 700 million monthly active users, and a lot of the photos with the highest engagements are of food. You’ll need to keep in mind that creating a personal chef presence on Instagram requires you to set some time aside every week. The key to marketing on this platform is to consistently post high-quality photos and regular updates with relevant hashtags.
In addition to curating Instagram content, you should follow, like, and comment on other chefs’ photos that inspire you. You may also want to take advantage of Instagram Stories — Instagram’s answer to Snapchat. Stories enables you to create slideshows of content that vanish in 24 hours. You can upload photos, create videos, make one-second GIF-like photo views, and even broadcast live videos using Stories — but you can only post content using a smartphone or tablet. The disappearing aspect of the content adds drama to your marketing and entices would-be clients to keep an eye out for your daily or weekly stories.
If there’s one social media platform you need to be active on as a celeb chef, it’s YouTube. Nearly 1/3 of everyone on the internet uses YouTube. YouTube allows you to record promotional and educational videos of you cooking, teaching techniques, and even recipe how-to’s. You can also create video responses to followers and customers who ask questions. By engaging your audience directly, you can form a warm connection with potential customers.
Bonus tip: Engage your audience with giveaways and contests
One way to increase traffic on all of your private chef social media outlets is by creating promotional giveaways. A basic giveaway works like this: for every five people a subscriber shares your post with, that subscriber earns an entry into a giveaway for a recipe book, product, apron, catered dinner party, or whatever you choose. You can also use contests and giveaways to create traffic directed toward your blog or website.
Welcome (potential clients) to the matrix
Social media is most effective when it is interconnected. Obviously, having one social media account is better than having none, but to truly benefit from social media, you should create accounts across multiple platforms, and all of them should be connected, and link to your website.
An optimal social media strategy has multiple accounts that are equally active, consistently updated, and interlinked. Together, they’ll work as your virtual kitchen, creating a live presence for your business that tells visitors you are not only passionate about what you do, but also excited to share it with the world.