Brightening The Feed – Restaurant Influencing with Olivia Gochnour

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Check out how to up your restaurant's social media game with these tips from the founder of Utah Grubs.

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The only thing that may make you hungrier than listening to this podcast would be taking a look at the @utahgrubs Instagram page, which is run by our guest, Olivia Gochnour! 

Olivia’s food photos have attracted over 65K followers, and on this episode she teaches how restaurants can boost their social media feeds with gorgeous pictures, work with influencers, and more. Here are some quick tidbits:

1. Take Good Pictures

Olivia recommends taking photos of your food at a table next to a window for natural lighting, while avoiding being directly under something like a pendant light. Interestingly, there’s also a “power in odd numbers.” For example, having five objects in a photo tends to look better than four or six. Regarding cameras, while Olivia uses a Canon 80D, she finds that lenses are most important and that it takes some trial and error to find the best one for you. 

2. Be Consistent
One of the mistakes Olivia sees restaurants make is being inconsistent with the types of photos and graphics they post on their social media pages. Her advice is to use the same types of lighting, filters, cameras, logos, and fonts to give your page a cohesive feel. Check out Cafe Rio’s page for reference. 

3. Try Influencer Marketing

As Olivia pointed out, “People aren’t watching commercials anymore…they are on their phones. They are on social media.” As an influencer with over 65,000 followers, she has a much larger reach than most restaurants online. She has found that a restaurant featured on her page will typically experience a 30% increase in sales in the two weeks following her visit. That’s amazing – especially during COVID-19!

It’s important to vet any influencers you are considering working with by asking for a media kit and verifying that their followers live near your restaurant. But once you’ve found one, just give them an email or DM them on Instagram. 

4. Try To Order Directly

Olivia encourages asking local restaurants if they have in-house delivery before using a 3rd party DSP, due to the high commissions they charge (typically anywhere from 15-35%). If you’re reading this and you’re not a restaurateur, you’d be surprised how willing most are to accommodate! 

5. Come To Utah!

Olivia started Utah Grubs to show the world how underrated Utah’s food scene is. But there’s a lot of great food in the area, and a pretty cool company called Ovation. Check out @Utahgrubs to find out more!


Thanks for reading! Make sure to check out the whole podcast, as well as other interviews with restaurant/business gurus by checking out “Give an Ovation” on, or your favorite place to listen to podcasts. 

For more, find @Utahgrubs on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, or visit

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