The REAL secret ingredient
Despite the fast food business taking a tumble as consumers become more health conscious, pizza is one exception and continues to buck this downward trend.
People LOVE pizza, and no more so than in hard times. But why?
Because of its fresh toppings, which include vegetables (even if its just a tomato base and a few mushrooms), pizza is perceived to be healthier than the fast food its rivals such as McDonalds serve up (even though a medium sized vegetarian pizza can contain way more calories than a Big Mac).
#2 Spending habits
Ordering a pizza delivery is cheaper than eating out. During or after a ‘financial crisis’, people eat out less and downgrade from restaurants to takeaways. And getting a fresh hot pizza delivered to your door remains a popular choice regardless of the financial climate.
But…the REAL ingredient to the success of pizza is…
Innovation, Innovation, innovation.
This is what is really keeping consumers hooked on pizza. The pizza chains are constantly coming up with weird and wonderful variations of pizza – if you look on any pizza chain menu, there’ll be hundreds-to-thousands of variations you can choose – from the size and toppings, to the crust and type of dough.
In 2014 Pizza Hut announced it had expanded its menu to 2 billion choices. This is because they are focusing on local tastes and demands of their customers. Take Domino’s as an example; in America they sell an Oreo Pizza, in Brazil a banana one, in Taiwan they developed a noodle-based topping, and their best seller in Korea is….a potato pizza.
Pizzerias are focussed on making it easy for people to buy their products; online sales now account for 70% of Domino’s sales.
And they’re super smart with their marketing – they’ll deliberately leaflet drop to the right people at exactly the right time – have you noticed it’s usually around pay-day?
Plus, they’ll piggy back onto huge sporting events. Domino’s reported a 10% rise in half-year profits after the football World Cup in Brazil last year. They rode on a month’s worth of TV coverage and heavily promoted their new ‘Carnivale Range’ – for a ‘limited time only’ of course.
Cleverer still, is that pizza can be made or bought almost anywhere in the world, but the constant regeneration of new flavours are very difficult to make at home.
I appreciate some of these examples are from global giants with global budgets. But, it’s still people focussed on constantly coming up with ideas on how to innovate their products and services to foster loyalty and win new customers over.
So, if something as simple as the humble pizza first made almost 130 years ago can be constantly re-invented, what you can be doing in your business to keep your customers coming back to you?