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Leveraging Social Media for Your QSR: A Guide to Community Engagement and Holiday Preparedness

Driving foot traffic is as crucial to the success of a QSR as maintaining the quality of your menu. Social media can serve as an invaluable tool for achieving this, particularly for small to medium-sized establishments. If you're looking for some actionable strategies to use on social media and to prepare for the upcoming holiday season, you've come to the right place.

And while it may feel too early to start thinking holidays (it's still summer, after all!), you're probably already seeing seasonal decor pop up in your favorite shopping destination. It can't hurt to be prepared.

Your Social Media is Your Billboard

First things first, if your restaurant doesn't have an Instagram, what are you waiting for? People eat with their eyes first, and Instagram is a visual smorgasbord. Show off that sizzling burger or creamy latte art. But hey, don't just be a show-off; be engaging. Run polls, ask for feedback, and absolutely share user-generated content (UGC). When Sally from down the street sees her post re-shared, you've got a customer for life.


Pro-Tip: Social Media Calendar

Save yourself some stress by planning out your posts at least a week in advance. There are great tools like Buffer or Hootsuite that can do this for you.

How to Community Build Like a Pro

Twitter and Facebook are where conversations happen. Think of these platforms as your local town hall meetings. Share updates, but also get involved in local happenings or trending topics. Tweet back when someone mentions your killer fries. Create a Facebook event for a "Taco Tuesday" or a special holiday menu reveal.

Action Steps:

  1. Engage in local hashtags

  2. Start a monthly Facebook Live Q&A or cooking demo

  3. Share community events or news—you’re a local business, so act like a local

TikTok Isn't Just for Teens

Seriously, this platform is a goldmine for the food industry. A well-executed, 30-second video showing the making of your signature dish could easily go viral. No Hollywood budget needed—your phone's camera will do. Have fun, get your staff involved, and let your brand's personality shine.

Quick Win:

Start with a '#DayInTheLife at [Your Restaurant's Name]' video. It's relatable, fun, and gives a behind-the-scenes look that people love.

Prepping for the Holiday Hustle

Alright, we're just around the corner from the holiday season. Social media can be your knight in shining armor here too.

Halloween

  • Host a costume contest and share the photos on Instagram

  • Create a limited-time "Spooky Special" menu item and tease it on Twitter

Thanksgiving

  • Run a "What Are You Thankful For?" campaign and ask people to share their stories

  • Start teasing your special Thanksgiving Day menu by the first week of November

Christmas

  • Start dropping hints about holiday promotions or special menu items by Thanksgiving

  • Use Instagram Stories to do a fun "12 Days of Christmas" special offer reveal

Year-Round Tips:

  • Update your social media banners to match the holiday themes

  • Limited-time offer? Pin that post to the top of your social media pages.


Social media engagement extends far beyond mere likes and follows; it's about fostering a community around your brand. For owners of small to medium-sized QSRs, an effective social media strategy can be transformative. And while it may feel early to start thinking about your holiday strategy, you're probably already seeing seasonal decor in your favorite shopping destinations. It never hurts to be prepared!


As you gear up for the holiday rush, consider elevating your customer experience further with self-ordering kiosk solutions from INFI. A kiosk doesn't just streamline operations; it also provides a platform for you to display your social media feeds, upcoming promotions, and special holiday menus. It's another touchpoint that resonates with your community engagement goals while optimizing in-store experience.


Interested? INFI's sales team is more than happy to help you explore how a self-ordering kiosk can integrate into your growth strategy. Schedule time to chat with the sales team and learn more about how an INFI kiosk can elevate your business.

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