Retweet to Eat

**From the pages of Junction’s notebook: Read about the experiences, perspectives, and ideas of Junction team members.

Scrolling through my Twitter timeline, one particular tweet caught my eye. “Want to dine with us on our opening weekend? RT this w/ your email addy.”

Within the rise of the ‘new’ food industry, restaurant openings from locally or nationally famous chefs are highly anticipated. The phone lines become jammed with foodies and socialistas seeking reservations for the hottest new table in town. As is often the case, the new hotspot was to open for Saturday and Sunday evening for a select group of diners prior to the reservation system opening the restaurant to the hungry public on Monday. However, the lucky few were not food critics or pro athletes, not even friends or family to the chef or management; they were simply Twitter followers.

Originally planning to wait until the hordes died down and initial reviews came back positive, I found myself suddenly compelled to participate in the experiment when the tweet showed up in my feed. I followed the directions, retweeting and providing an email address for contact. Two days later, nearly having forgotten about the whole thing, I received an email from the sommelier with good news.

Working through the kinks of this highly unusual process, we sent 5 emails in total back and forth – hardly efficient – but I was ultimately rewarded with a phone call from the front desk confirming my reservation.

After a spectacular and innovative meal with a true VIP experience, I sat at my table incredulous at the realization that I had booked the exciting dinner directly through a social media outlet. I had been rewarded dearly for being a loyal follower. Instantly, I was galvanized as a dedicated customer by the thought.

Of course, the ‘Twitter Reservation System’ isn’t en route to overtake the likes of OpenTable or old fashioned phone calls for reservations any time soon, but this particular experiment hooked me in and ultimately electrified me, proving the power of social media done right.

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