Edit ModuleShow Tags

Master Pizza keeps up with the times through aggressive marketing and social media.

This Cleveland-area pizzeria’s Pizza Points loyalty program boasts 11,000 active members, 5,000 Facebook likes and 2,500 Twitter followers.



Ken Petti, with his wife, Almeda, introduced Master Pizza in 1955

 

N

A cartoon “mascot” advertises the pizzeria.

ot long after opening Master Pizza (masterpizza.com) in Mayfield Heights, Ohio, in 1955, founder Ken Petti was primed for impressive growth. By 1960, he took on four partners to start franchising—the first business to do so in the Cleveland area, and long before franchising laws or regulations. Between 1965 and 1985, Master Pizza boasted 38 locations but eventually fizzled out after the company split up, leaving only the original pizzeria standing. “My family took over in 2000 as Petti was retiring,” recalls current owner Michael LaMarca. “He was an old family friend, and my mom and I had worked in pizzerias before, so we had some experience. We used the original recipes, menu, everything—it’s always been our goal to reignite the franchise and get it back to where it once was.”

That’s no small undertaking, but LaMarca is well-equipped to bring the business back to those heights. He started franchising in 2012 and has already opened five more Master Pizza locations in the area. The key, he believes, is doing “a few things well”: keeping the menu streamlined (only pizza, salad, calzones, wings and pasta) and maintaining top-notch product quality. He also boosts brand recognition through constant competition as a member of the U.S. Pizza Team, earning him plenty of free press. “Being on the team has helped a lot,” he says. “Several articles have been written on that alone, which helps get our name out there.”

An early menu shows a cheese pizza listed for only $2

 

But LaMarca’s major focus is on aggressive marketing and social media campaigns. The Pizza Points loyalty program, now with 11,000 active members, significantly helped the company grow; each order includes a card with a code that customers can redeem, worth 5 to 500 points—“like winning the lottery!” says LaMarca with a laugh. And with nearly 5,000 likes on Facebook and 2,500 Twitter followers, Master Pizza has built a passionate and vocal fan base. “Social media personalizes our company and allows us to connect with customers on many levels, giving us a unique bond with them so that when they think of pizza, they’ll think of us,” LaMarca explains. “We like to say we’re rich in tradition, enhanced with modern technology.”

 

Edit Module

Tell us what you think at or email.

Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Articles

CPK Adds a Vegetarian Twist to Its Original BBQ Chicken Pizza for Summertime

CPK unveils a new summertime menu featuring fan favorites.

5 Tips for Crafting Your Pizzeria's Video Marketing Strategy

Pizza is the most telegenic of foods, making video a powerful weapon in a pizzeria marketer's arsenal.

Little Caesars Announces an Impossible Pizza Made with Meatless Sausage

Little Caesars becomes the first national pizza chain to add a meat substitute.

Revel Introduces Point of Sale Solution Designed Specifically for Pizzeria Owners

Revel's tailored solution uses best practices gleaned from hundreds of pizzeria implementations.

660 Pizzas Made to Benefit Cancer Association

Spanish Initiative Raised Funds to Bring Joy to Children in Hospitals

Internet Commemorates the Man Who Spent Millions Worth of Bitcoin on Pizza

Nine years later, the Bitcoin Pizza Man is still famous.

Baking and Pastries Are On-Trend in Upcoming HostMilan Event

This year's event focuses on respect for tradition and new customer habits.

Pizzeria Waiter Returns $424,000 Check to Customer Who Didn’t Tip

Karma has a way of repaying, especially when a waiter is stiffed.

Denver Chef Thomas Garnick Wins $15,000 in Real California Pizza Contest

Winners from Chicago and Las Vegas took home $5,000 each in bake-off featuring Real California cheeses.

No Means No: Some Pizzerias Feel Violated by Third-Party Delivery

Think Tank users report their menus were posted without their consent.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags