Email marketing, part I

Pizza operators are not known for their great technological know-how.You may not understand and even fear the idea of putting up a website to help market your restaurant. You work with people, food and day-to-day real life experiences and you don't have much time for the new tech society blossoming around us. The Internet is working well with large pizza chains so don't be left behind. You need to compete with them or they will eat you alive.

Email Marketing is Inexpensive

It is targeted, effective and traceable, as a matter of fact it is one of the most innovative marketing tools to become part of the Pizza industry. Email Marketing is still evolving, but there are many new fresh approaches to attracting new and on-going customers. What is email marketing?

Email Marketing for the Pizza Industry is the fastest most economical way to deliver coupons to the end customer. It is done by using email to send coupons, special promotions, menu updates or any other advertising material you would normally send via regular 'snail mail.' No longer will the pizza coupon be the same. Imagine sending music coupons, animated coupons or even video coupons delivered right into the homes and businesses of customers. This ad (text or full blown design) is taken in coded form and sent to a list of recipients. The end user prints out the coupon on the home computer's printer to redeem, which saves the pizzeria owner print cost.

Present cost for paper coupons:

100,000 print $1500.00 to $2500.00
to include design work

Deliver cost:
average $250.00 per 10,000
(2500.00/100,000)

Total cost:
$4000.00 – 5000.00 per 100,000

You Need The Internet!

You may not like computers but your customers do. The Internet is the fastest growing medium in history. There are already over 150 million Internet users now and the numbers are rising. Radio & TV did not even catch on as fast as the Internet in ratio to time & population. Many pizza operators feel that they don't need the Internet, but the fact is, the Internet is changing the way we conduct business, forever. Here are some examples of how computers and the Internet have changed business already.

  1. New customers can find your store, menu and directions on the Web. When was the last time a normal Internet User used the Yellow Pages book?
  2. Increase check averages of your existing customers. Customers can know of deals and specials quicker.
  3. Increase the frequency of your offers. It cost virtually nothing to send as many emailed coupons or specials as you want. Operators on tight budgets may not send out paper flyers as frequent.
  4. Keep in touch with your customers through emails. You can tell customers about local news (High School Football/Base Ball, Boy Scouts/Girl Scouts etc).
  5. Marketing at the lowest possible cost with email marketing software. No printers, no postage. Wireless email is the next boom. Web-enabled cell phones will give new meaning to targeted marketing.

A study by Yahoo predicts by the year 2002, 58% of the people who are on-line will purchase food & food services via the Internet. Look around, your customers are ordering flowers, groceries, and evens cars on the web. What's to stop them from ordering a pizza and wings from your operation?

What Can The Internet Do For My Pizza Shop?

The Internet reaches millions of people everyday who use it for work, play, research, shopping and communication. If your Pizza Shop has a website, you can clearly understand the benefits of being on-line. Some believe the Internet is causing a serious decline in daily newspapers and T.V. viewing. It is a first and easy way for people to make travel plans, rent cars, talk to their friends and order a pizza with the click of the mouse. The Internet will increase your visibility. It is available 24 hours a day.

What Can A Website Do For My Shop?

A good website can educate your customers so they know what to expect before they place their order. It gives you credibility in a competitive world and let's the customer know you are a cutting edge operator. Your website should include a map with driving directions, your daily specials and your menu. You can even post reviews from the local papers. An important aspect of the web is you can learn to order food, supplies and save money. This means you can spend more time with your new customers being warm and fuzzy.

How About Ordering On-line?

Your pizza operation can increase sales by having on-line ordering added to your website and you don't even need a computer. Domino's chains have increased sales by 22% due to on-line ordering. They claim 54% of the people that order on-line are first time customers which means they are building a customer base of potential repeat customers. On-line ordering may take some time to catch on, but think of the additional sales that can occur for less than the cost of one pizza per week.

No More Printing or Postage

The database that you collect from your website, on-line ordering and also collected in your operation allows you to communicate with your customers for free. You can send email newsletters, coupons, birthday cards and musical coupons to thousands of people with one click. The Internet is making our world a truly different environment in which to conduct business. Don't get left behind. Remember to operate your pizza operation on the cutting edge and get on-line.

Michael P. Cohen is a restaurant consultant and web marketer that has been very successful with pizza operators to help them sell more pizza. He has helped develop the internet pizza mall (ipizzamall.com) which is a pizzamarketing resource center. Feel free to call him on his private line at1-800-784-4883 or email at Michael@ipizzamall.com