To the innovator go the spoils, at least in modern UK business. Domino’s recently illustrated this principle, using new technology to increase their market share in the competitive fast food business.
How has the pizza company accomplished this? First, they have built up a large presence on social networking websites, making sure their fast food logo design is the first that comes to mind when many people in the UK think of pizza. Second and perhaps most notably, this September Domino’s introduced an iPhone app that allows pizza lovers to order their favourite pie from their smartphone. The company is already planning to launch a similar app for smartphones that use the Android operating system.
Will customers use their mobiles to order pizza? All signs point to a positive answer. The result so far has been a double digit increase in sales last year, much of which is coming from apps and the internet. About a third of Domino’s orders are now placed online from both phones and computers, with £1 million in sales from the iPhone app alone.
Smartphone technologies are certainly a sizeable part of the growth of the Domino’s brand in the UK, but it should be noted that they are not the only factor. The recession led to an increase in sales for pizza and similarly less expensive ‘eat in’ choices, as many customers could no longer afford more expensive restaurant meals. Now that the economy is growing once again, people may still stick to their established habits. In addition, the large amount of snow and inclement weather this December made delivery more attractive to many people in London and other areas of the UK. Popular sporting matches also increase Domino’s sales, with high numbers during the football World Cup and similar events.
Another factor is social networking, which has given unprecedented exposure to the pizza chain. Domino’s currently leads the pizza pack in this arena, with more than 1.5 million fans on Facebook and more than 21,000 followers on Twitter. Much of this is due to a recent drive offering prizes to the person who recruited the most new Facebook fans.
If you are trying to create a presence for your company, the first step is to develop a professional brand and logo design. Your second step should be to identify what types of marketing will be most effective with your particular segment of UK consumers. Last, think innovatively in marketing. Domino’s may not be the last fast food company to offer a convenient smartphone app, but their place as one of the first will help them continue to dominate the pizza delivery market in months to come. Their logo design and brand have such a heavy presence online that their competition will struggle merely to catch up.
Branding and marketing are not a destination, but a journey. Domino’s will need to continue to woo customers with a great brand and a great product in the future if they want to continue their current growth. However, they have made a great start for 2011.