• Nicole Pantanowitz

How to make your recipes go viral!

Taste matters. But taste alone doesn’t explain why some recipes get all the traffic and some recipes gather dust. Is there a science behind which recipes are tried-and-true and which recipes are no-can-do? Yes, there is, and it’s not just the yum-factor.



By popular demand, we’re breaking down the key factors for driving more traffic to your recipes. Bonus? By posting recipes along these guidelines on Foodtalk, you will also significantly increase the likelihood of getting your Foodtalk recipes regularly featured in our daily email!

Factor 1: Is it relatable?

Readers are looking for recipes they can add to their dinner rotation. That means they’re interested in recipes that appeal to their tastes and their abilities. Sharing dishes with broad appeal and basic techniques will make your content more desirable, more shareable, and more doable for more readers.


Questions to ask yourself:

Does this recipe have broad appeal?

Am I using techniques and skills that many people have?

Are the ingredients I’m using easily found in stores or in people’s pantries?


Foodie Fact: Less ingredients and less prep and cook time means less intimidating and more doable!



Factor 2: Is it innovative?

How many ways can you make an omelette, right? Well, it turns out, that if you can find a new way that people haven’t thought of before, your omelette is going to get a lot more attention. When planning recipes to share, consider what new food “hacks” or flavor combinations your bringing to the table. Whether it’s a quicker way to make a lasagna, a no-bake option for a favorite dessert, or a minimal-ingredient bread recipe, catching readers by surprise and giving them new ideas will make you and your content more valuable and more popular!


Questions to ask yourself:

Are you making a classic dish in a new way?

Are you finding a new combination for basic flavors?


Foodie Fact: Readers love new ways to serve classic dishes, so think classic and then think “how can I turn this on it’s head?”



Factor 3: Is the end result impressive?

When it comes to food, the yum factor is the most important piece of the story. A reader eats with their eyes before they ever break out their pots and pans. This means that taking the time to properly plate and photograph your food can take it from family dinner to Insta-winner.


Questions to ask yourself:

Would I share this recipe if I saw it on my Facebook newsfeed?

Would I send this recipe to a friend if I saw it on Instagram?

Does my after photo capture the appeal of my dish?


Foodie Fact: When you find recipes on social media that you want to try, what aspects of the recipe appeal to you? How do the pictures make you feel? What whets your appetite? Now, take those feelings and try to replicate them for your own recipes and photos.



Factor 4: Is the recipe high quality?

“High quality” refers to the quality of photos and copy. A recipe can be doable and delicious, but if it is poorly written and hard to follow or the photos are dimly lit and grainy, you won’t get readers excited to get cookin’.



Question to ask yourself:

Would a reader be able to make this recipe by reading my post?

How would I rate the quality of my photos on a scale from 1-10, ten being the highest?



Factor 5: Is the recipe too simple?

Not all dishes are created equal. Soups and casseroles need recipes, of course, but when it comes to a good ol’ sandwich, a plain pasta, or a simple lemonade, most people can find their own way around a kitchen. If readers can replicate a dish without the recipe, it’s probably too simple.


Question to ask yourself:

Might the reader already know how to make this dish? Can they make it just by looking at the picture? Is my recipe more of an “food assembly” or is it a real blend of ingredients?



Factor 6: Is the project too technical?

This one’s very subjective to the audience you’re speaking to so we’ll frame it in the context of the Foodtalk audience. Foodtalkers are looking for recipes they can add to their weekly menu, dishes to broaden their dinner rotation. Therefore, recipes involving advanced tools, machinery, or skills that are not accessible to the average foodie are less likely to be featured.


Point to remember:

You don’t need to hit every one of these factors perfectly in order to get a viral hit. The goal is to evaluate your recipe through this lens and try to meet as many of these factors as possible.


Summary:

The four key factors for increasing the likelihood of your recipes going viral (and being featured on Foodtalk!) are relatable, innovative, impressive, and quality.

The two factors that decrease that likelihood are too simple and too technical.


By creating recipes along these guidelines, you will significantly increase the likelihood of your recipes going viral, which includes getting thousands of views on Foodtalk and regular features in the Foodtalk email.



Questions? Feedback?

We love hearing from you!

For the Blogger Traffic Program: nicole@hometalk.com

For the Instagram Influencer Program: aimee@hometalk.com





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