What have potholes got to do with pizza? A lot, says Dominos, which made headlines last year by launching an initiative called Paving for Pizza, a program allowing citizens to nominate a pothole in their town for Domino’s to repair for free. Here’s how a readiness to take risks paid off for the pizza purveyor.
The campaign boosted awareness across social channels, and its campaign-specific microsite garnered over 400,000 visits, a smaller percentage than its main site traffic, but higher than the monthly average for 40% of brands tracked in Gartner L2’s recent insight report on restaurants. The program received 137,000 nominations for repair in over 15,000 ZIP codes. Social referral traffic accounts for a small share of traffic to the main Domino’s site but had a significant impact on the Paving for Pizza microsite, accounting for 29% of all site traffic and proving the efficacy of the campaign. This came mainly from organic traction, as Domino’s Twitter account and other users tweeted out the URL pavingforpizza.com hundreds of times without paid promotion in the first three weeks.
Similarly, 70% of social referral traffic in June 2018 came from one viral Reddit post that included the “Oh Yes We Did” slogan on newly laid pavement, garnering over 120,000 upvotes and 4,000 comments. Domino’s experimentation with buzzy campaigns to advance digital assets is not new, and strategic investment in more traditional media appears to follow each new app development and digital-first campaign. Across all campaigns, the pizza leader invests heavily in TV promotion, bolstering awareness and subsidizing organic traction with creative content. The spots are also reposted on YouTube, where some receive significant views, including Hot Spot ads that received nearly 175,000 views. Following this campaign, Domino’s rolled back spend and reallocated it to its Paving for Pizza ads for a three-month period, also accruing 2.9 million views on YouTube.
As stated in the 2018 Domino’s third quarter earnings call, the launch of Domino’s Hot Spots and the Paving for Pizza campaign have generated significant attention, aiding in strong same store growth, narrowly missing 6.5% growth. Most recently, Domino’s has invested in spots for the Dinner Bell feature on its app, which sends alerts to selected groups when activated by a family member or friend after a pizza order concludes. By constantly experimenting with new technologies and promoting its efforts across social media, Domino’s wins the news cycle and helps build buzz throughout the year.