CoCreate Business Moves: How an Ethiopian Restaurant Reaches New Customers on Social

Adobe Spark enlisted social media strategists to work with their favorite small business to help them makeover their social media presence. This story is part of a 4-part series exploring the unique challenges facing small businesses today, as well as the creative ways business owners are rising to the occasion, with a little help from a friend.

About the Business

Rosalind’s Restaurant was opened in the early 1980s by a family of immigrants and quickly earned its enduring reputation as a neighborhood staple. It was the first Ethiopian Restaurant in the Los Angeles area that came to be known as Little Ethiopia. Over the years, Rosalind’s has become the favorite meet-up spot for locals and a gathering place for after-service meals for Ethiopian church-goers.

About the Strategist

DonYé Taylor is Adobe Spark Ambassador, Creative Consultant, and the Co-Founder of The Digital Footprint, a Black-owned creative marketing agency. As a longtime customer of Rosalind’s Restaurant, Donye is committed to doing her part in making sure this neighborhood gem sticks around for years to come. Pulling from her toolbox of content creation and social media know-how, DonYé’s designed a strategy to reinvigorate Rosalind’s social presence and help them to lure new residents to the neighborhood favorite.

The Challenge

As a result of gentrification, rents are on the rise in the central Los Angeles neighborhood of Little Ethiopia– home to Rosalind’s. With this shift, the restaurant has had to capture the attention of neighborhood newcomers and search for unique ways to convey their rich heritage in the community. COVID-19 has created additional challenges, including a significant shift to its operating model and the need to build a new patio space. These things combined have translated into even less time to keep up with the demands of social media.

The Goals

  1. Reach new customers, highlighting Ethiopian food traditions and underscoring the restaurant’s rich history and community impact.
  2. Create awareness around COVID-safe dining solutions, including to-go services.
  3. Ensure neighborhood residents know about restaurant’s weekday deals and their modern takes on traditional Ethiopian favorites.

The Adobe Spark-Made Solution

DonYé turned to Instagram as the main channel in order to reach the millennials moving into the neighborhood and searching for where to eat or order takeout. She focused on educating around Ethiopian’s healthy, nourishing qualities and highlighting recent press and customer reviews.

The Results

After sharing its refreshed content to Instagram, the restaurant saw its Instagram engagement grow by 11%. They also saw a 44% lift in impressions and a 35% leap in content interactions, thanks to pairing a more refined strategy with fresh visuals. Of these outcomes and this collaboration overall, Rosalind’s says: “We learned a lot about how to best connect with our audience and can’t wait to enact this new strategy!” Looking to the future, they are eager to share more graphics that tell their business story, highlight their mouthwatering menu options, and keep new and longtime customers in the know as the business shifts and adapts to the times.

Emily Corbin leads Community for Adobe Spark.