5 things pizzeria owners need to learn for Facebook success

Pi Day, celebrated on March 14 around the world, pays homage to the mathematical constant represented by the symbol π. Pi is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. It has been calculated to more than one trillion digits beyond its decimal point and is an irrational and transcendental number, meaning it will continue infinitely without repetition or pattern.

Why are we talking about Pi and mathematical symbols here? It’s because, with some help from social media, Pi Day can create amazing results in your bottom line. If you do the math right, expect extraordinary results!

In a particularly successful promotion for one of our clients in 2016, a pizzeria’s Pi Day social media campaign brought in 50 new customers in just one day, totaling $1,263 in sales and 198 coupon redemptions, all for an ROI of 271,470%! This was, as you can imagine, an exhilarating day for our client.

With 33% of new customers ordering online and 67% of them ready to redeem a Facebook promotion from their phone at your pizzeria, it’s safe to say your customers will embrace a great offer on Pi Day.

So how can you make it work? Here’s what you need to do:

Plan ahead. Our client’s promotion was created more than a month in advance—another reason why it’s important to develop your social media content calendar, as we’ve explained in previous issues of PMQ. Planning ahead gives you a chance to polish your campaign and execute it in the most efficient manner. But if you haven’t already planned a Pi Day promo for this month, it’s not too late. Just get started today!

Create an irresistible offer. It has become something of a pizza industry tradition to promote pizzas for $3.14 on Pi Day. Who wouldn’t pay $3.14 for a pizza? But if you think that’s too big a discount, follow Hungry Howie’s lead—in past Pi Day specials, the chain has offered a medium one-topping pizza for $3.14 with the purchase of any regularly priced Hungry Howie pie.

Leverage the power of your existing audience. For Facebook and Instagram, design a Pi Day graphic that includes a photo of a mouthwatering pizza and the special $3.14 price. Also try creating a special Snapchat filter and invite guests into your store to try it out for themselves. Once you get them through the doors, hold a contest. Pitfire Pizza in West Hollywood, California, last year invited its followers to visit the pizzeria for a chance to win free pies for a year. The winner was the person who was able to recite pi to the largest number of digits beyond the decimal point from memory.

Take full advantage of video. To build up the excitement on Pi Day, use Facebook Live, Instagram Stories and/or Snapchat to take your followers behind the scenes in your pizzeria. Dress up a manager or employee as Albert Einstein (March 14 is also the great physicist’s birthday) to offer humorous commentary or show the process of creating a pizza with the pi symbol.

Start touting your promotion at least a week in advance. Not only will this afford you enough time to raise awareness about Pi Day, you’ll also get some insights on how the campaign is working and how customers are responding. If you need to tweak it to get better response, do so.