TikTok influencer highlights Richmond restaurants – WWBT

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) -The hashtag “shop local” reaches new heights in Richmond thanks to one TikTok influencer.
Ja’Mia Brooks records her dining experiences at restaurants around the River City, and business owners couldn’t be more thrilled.
Making videos has always been a passion for this 26-year-old.
“Before I started making TikToks, I would just be at restaurants like ‘don’t touch your food yet. Let me take a video.” anywhere I go, I want to record the experience,” said
Her love for making videos and trying new things was the perfect recipe for becoming a viral sensation.
It was during the pandemic when she found a need.
“I was looking for like things to do in Richmond, places to eat in Richmond, nothing popped up. It was empty. No one had reached Richmond yet. I’m like… wait a second,” Brooks said.
Little did she know her TikTok at Barrio’s Taqueria and Tequila on Main Street would soar, bringing her nearly 2 million views and almost 90 thousand followers.
“With most of them being based in Richmond, they’re looking for the next thing that’s fun to do after they feel like they’ve done everything,” Brooks said. “They want to know what’s cool. What’s next?”
That’s when she made a habit of pulling out her phone while out on the town in RVA, putting the spotlight on local restaurants.
Tony Long is the general manager of Island Shrimp Company. He says social media plays a big role in keeping all his doors open.
“It’s been life-saving to some degree, especially for us in these winter months,” Long said. “We really needed the attention. Once that TikTok went viral, we asked all of our staff to share across all of our restaurants.”
Brooks is not only a viral TikTok star but also juggles between being a lash tech and a fashion business owner. But supporting local businesses through her platform comes with ease.
“If you’re looking for something to do. If you’re looking for a place to eat, I got you covered,” said Brooks.
She plans to expand her content beyond the restaurant scene to feature local museums and theaters.
Keep up with Ja’mia’s River City adventures by following her on TikTok, @jamiabrooks.
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