Busted. Online Behaviour Reveals Difference Between Foods We Like To Look At And The Foods We Like To Eat

They say we eat with our eyes.

And our eyes, increasingly, are looking at food porn on Instagram.

The power of social media to influence what we put in our mouths has become immense.

Sydney chef Josh Arthurs this week introduced his Infamous Primo burger to Hotel William in the city’s CBD — propelled by support from the Fatties Burger Appreciation Society (FBAS), a Facebook group with over 61,000 members.

Some of the food influencers tracked by social hotness experts BrandData are achieving unprecedented audience engagement. The food influencer category is engaging 5% of its audience a day on Twitter, and 6% a day on Facebook. The only category more engaging is Radio Stations.

Image Source: Instagram user howtocookthat

The No.1 online food influencer is How To Cook That, with over 2.5 million YouTube subscribers. Do not watch this channel when you’re hungry, as the experience is akin to some kind of CIA torture technique.

Latest upload is a stop-motion recipe for extreme milkshakes, which they term ‘freakshakes’. Their cake vids are mind-blowingly popular. The iPad Cake film has been viewed over 24 million times, the Minecraft Cake Village over 10 million times.

Image Source: Instagram user howtocookthat

In 2nd place is CharlisCraftyKitchen, in which 9 year old Charli and her 6 year old sister Ashlee, from Queensland, share their recipes for indulgent treats. A video which saw the dynamic duo creating jello & Sprite popsicles inspired by the film Frozen has been viewed an incredible 102 million times. If their recipes don’t make you sick, the reports of their income will — the sisters’ ad revenue has been estimated at over AUD$160,000 a month. And they’re still in primary school.

Image Source: Instagram user: charliscraftykitchen

By way of massive contrast, the No.3 food influencer of the 139 listed by BrandData is Loni Jane — the self-described “Mumma of Abundant Plantbased Organic Lifestyle”. She’s the most popular Foodie on Instagram. Second on Instagram is healthy breakfast pusher ‘silverspies’, while 3rd is vegan teen Tess Begg.

Image Source: Instagram user lonijane

The dichotomy is stark and consistent. Instagram is the dominant platform for the lean, the healthy, and the protein-filled. Whereas YouTube videos are used for cakes, milkshakes and desserts.

The only possible conclusion: for the food we like to look at, we choose healthy. But when it comes to the recipes we actually want to make, we choose sugary.


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