Posted September 8, 2010 4:13 pm by with 6 comments

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Hungry? Check Twitter and you’re sure to find some suggestions that will satisfy both your tummy and your need to share information online. But among all the discounts and Foursquare check-ins, there’s one company that has made social media an integral part of their dining concept. It’s called 4food and it’s giving all new meaning to the phrase “have it your way.”

4food serves hamburgers with a healthy twist. They have one shop in Manhattan but they’re getting press from all over thanks to their innovative concept. Instead of offering a set menu, the customer is asked to create their own special burger by mixing and matching ingredients from a long list. You can give your order to a waiter, the old fashioned way. Or you can sit down to an iPad (which is bolted to the table) and take your time developing your masterpiece. Then, you can surf the web free of charge while you wait for your creation to arrive.

The social media aspect comes in by way of a challenge. Once you create your burger, you’re asked to name it and share it with friends via Facebook and Twitter. Having your own moment of food fame is probably enough for most people, but if your friends actually buy your burger, then you get a .25 credit toward your next purchase. The restaurant also runs a monitor showing Foursquare check-ins and Twitter tweets to tie together the experience.

In a recent interview with Canadian Press, 4food owner Adam Kidron, a new media entrepreneur, said he wanted to give customers the opportunity to make and brand their own food.

“My idea is that business is as progressive as you want it to be. It can make lives more interesting and better. 4food is not the same old thing.”

Brugger’s Bagels also wanted to do something different and interesting with their social media marketing so they decided to give away music. That’s right. No free bagels here, which is fine, because it’s hard to hand out bagels on Facebook, but it’s easy to give away music downloads and that’s what Brugger’s is doing with their new Music Showcase promotion.

Brugger’s teamed up with SocialGrub to provide tunes from indie artists most people probably haven’t heard of. It’s a win-win for everyone says Sam Rubin of SocialGrub.

“When Einstein gives away a free bagel, that’s one vertical, versus when we do this, we bring Bruegger’s advertising to the music audience, we have six different bands pushing the brands. We have two very different verticals coming together for a common goal, and record companies love it because it helps expose their bands to this audience, and it really doesn’t cost them anything to get that exposure.”

Are you looking for a new social media idea for your food-related business? Check out “Why Aren’t More Restaurants Using Social Media” for some tips and tricks. For a more indepth look at restaurant marketing, visit SmartBlog on Restaurants.

  • I have a new burger call the “Picky Eater” only add ketchup and mustard (bread optional)

    • Cynthia

      I have a nephew that would buy that one. For me, I’m looking for some feta cheese, olives and red onions

      • Scott

        Put some sun-blushed tomatoes on that and I’m sold. Yummy.

  • Interesting concept. I could see this being used once or twice, though I’m not sure how many repeat visitors they’d get.

    Unless, of course, it becomes addictive to the Facebook and Twitter users like Farmville and Mafia Wars have with the Facebook crowd.

    • Cynthia

      I have a teenage son and I could see him and his friends making a competition out of it, seeing who can create and actually eat the wackiest combo of ingredients. This could get ugly.

  • Jam

    Is really true that Facebook and twitter have became daily food now a days.