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How Amy Kritzer Turned Food, and Culture, into a Community

We’ve written previously about how social audiences have transformed the restaurant industry. In this modern “foodie” climate, a new group of influencers have gained in prominence as consumers look to further identify with culinary experiences. Recently, to learn more about this trend, we connected with Amy Kritzer, founder of the Jewish recipe site What Jew Wanna Eat, owner of the cool Jewish gifts site, ModernTribe.com, and author of the cookbook Sweet Noshings. Read on to learn how to take the perfect food photo, how brands can better leverage Instagram, and to see some of Amy’s favorite food pics.

How and why did you get your start in the influencer space, and how would you say that career has evolved over time?

I started What Jew Wanna Eat for fun in December 2010, and soon realized the strong connection people felt to Jewish food from the wonderful feedback and emails I got. Sharing modern Jewish recipes with people of all religions became my passion. Back then, social media was hardly what it is today! I would post on my blog, and Facebook, and that’s about it. Soon after starting my blog I quit my consultancy job to go to culinary school, and What Jew Wanna Eat has continued to grow! After being a finalist in a national business competition, I got into freelance writing and recipe development. This past year has been huge with my first cookbook coming out and becoming the new owner of ModernTribe.com.

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As an influencer, how do you choose which brands to work with?

Working with brands can be fun! It forces me to be creative and I can share products I love with my readers. But I’m very picky – I turn down a lot of opportunities if they don’t fit What Jew Wanna Eat or if the brand does not give me the freedom to create content that works for my audience.

Where (emails, billboards, social, product page, etc.) do you think influencer content is most useful for brands?

When working with brands I prefer a campaign that reaches more than one touch point. I’ll usually create a recipe with a product, and share on social media and in my newsletter. Seeing the brand more than once reinforces it. But I also do Instagram-only campaigns because it’s just such a useful platform to reach people and create cool content!

What are your top 2-3 tips for taking the perfect food photo? What have you done in order to take the perfect food picture?

Natural daylight is key. Overhead and close-up foodporn shots always work well. And use an editing program to perfect your shot. I also try to get a cool background, especially one that gives the food more of a story. Here are a few of my favorites! I have lots of food blogger friends now, so it’s not weird for us to all stand on a table together, or take photos of each other holding up stacks of bagels. Anything for the perfect shot!

What brands do you think are leveraging user-generated or influencer content the best in food or restaurant world?

I always think @KitchenAidUSA does a great job. I love @ShakeShack and @BreadsBakery too.

How do you think food and/or restaurant brands could better be leveraging Instagram?

For restaurants inviting influencers to try a new menu, either do it during the day, or have lights set up to get better photos. Brands should take the time to research the best influencers in their space – not always the ones with the most followers – to make sure they are a good fit.

What’s your favorite food Insta account, favorite restaurant Insta account, and why?

I love @12chairscafe and @russanddaughters for their cohesive looks. @brunchboys and @dennistheprescott always make me hungry!

Your favorite Insta post from your profile & why?

Probably these bagels, because I drool a little just looking at it!

PSA: #tbt now stands for That Bagel, Though! ??? #jewwannabagel

A photo posted by Amy Kritzer ?Jewish Food (@whatjewwannaeat) on

Make sure to check out Amy on Instagram, visit her sites (WhatJewWannaEat.com and ModernTribe.com), and pick up a copy of her book, Sweet Noshings!

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