Being a foodie is about appreciating every aspect of food, how it smells, how it tastes, how it came together and how it looks. Foodies do not just eat to live, they live to eat. They are always on the lookout for a new food experience that will take them down a new path of food experiences. Foodies are critics, cheerleaders, guinea pigs and influencers of and for key player in the culinary industry.
Prior to the rise of social media, food critics would write in the paper about their opinions on things they ate. Food journalism was a thing for the food elite. Then social media took over and food journalism morphed into this field where everybody was welcome to give their opinion and critique. Because social media plays such an influential role, food bloggers and food writers on online platforms have now become the people chefs and restaurateurs worry about.
Social media makes it so that everybody can be a foodie. Information and education is quickly disseminated on social media platforms. This allows people to pick up skills and hobbies they may not have been able to participate in before. With platforms like Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest that make use of visual demonstration and information, people learn about food, how to appreciate food, how to prepare it and where to find it. It’s as though the foodie culture is being passed down from older foodies to the newer ones through the internet.
Social media gives the foodie a lucrative bargaining tool. No one could have anticipated the marketing potential that social media platforms have gained in the last few years. People who are deemed to be influencers or influential on social media, based on the large following they have or how many view they have become vital to goods and service providers. These influencers are vital link between business owners and the target market that may be on social media. This is no different in the food world. Influential foodies with a big following on social media are now being used to market restaurants, food products and even being contracted as brand ambassadors.
Social media has helped to create diversity in the opinions people receive from foodies. This is especially true for special diets like the vegan, paleo, gluten free and other special diets that may have not gotten as much airtime prior to the development of social media. Mainstream media has people who manage what content is put out, so what is given to the public may not be the full story. Social media has opened up the public’s access to information as these platforms allow users to share and learn from each other. Thus, where someone would have heard certain claims about certain diets or foods, it would have not been easy to compare that claim with a counterclaim. With social media, cross referencing information received from different sources is immediate and almost simultaneous. This is important as it helps people make informed dietary choices.
If the current trend is anything to go buy, the culinary world has only just begun to witness the potential social media has for making everyone a more conscious and keen eater. There is more to come from this new breed of social media foodies who