The Bar Brand People share the latest trends in hospitality branding to elevate your social media.

For those in the hospitality industry, Instagram means business. Nowadays, every customer is a food critic and blogger, often spending more time shooting their drink than actually enjoying it. While it seems unnecessary (just drink the damn thing!), when patrons upload a photo of your venue or offering to social media, they are essentially creating mini advertisements for your business – for free.

The great news is, regardless of budget, bars and restaurants can introduce branded elements that take advantage of the customer’s willingness to pull out their phone. Here are some of the latest creative trends.

  1. The Cocktail Garnish

Think ice stamps, edible rice paper stencils and branded orange peel. Anything unique you can put on your cocktail that ties back to your brand is excellent, as it will likely feature in your customer’s photos and be seen by a large audience online.

Image credit: Dante NY, Casa Tiki, O.G.B Bar

Image credit: Boston Common Magazine, Aqua HK, Bulleit Whiskey

  1. Branded Backdrops

The drink itself is just one thing, but have you considered what is behind, underneath or around it? Once your millennial customer has bought their drink, they’re probably considering how best to photograph it. One of the simplest and most affordable things you can do to get your brand featured is to create awesome print collateral. If your venue has eye catching or unique coasters, menus or greaseproof paper, there’s a high chance your customer will want to include them in their photo.

Image credit: Cocktail Academy, Aleksandra Kingo, The Laylow

  1. Tableware

Table top items are also prime branding opportunities. When a customer takes a photo of their dinner, the plate, serviette or cutlery packaging will often appear in the shot. So why not print your logo or branding on these items too? Remember, the more interesting you make your brand collateral, the more likely it is your customer will want to photograph it to share on social media.

Image credit: Paul’s Restaurant, Tropicola, Tales Of

Need some new brand elements to elevate your social media? Send us an email at

The Bar Brand People are a Sydney based design studio specialising in branding for bars, restaurants and hotels. | @thebarbrandpeople