When comedian Jon Stewart dissed Chicago-style pizza in a recent segment on The Daily Show, some Windy City pizzeria operators took it as an insult. But Marc Malnati, owner of Lou Malnati's Pizzeria, saw it as a marketing opportunity – and he quickly cashed in on it. After Stewart's well-publicized tirade – in which he compared Chicago pizza to "an above-ground marinara swimming pool for rats" – Malnati, who happened to be in New York at the time, arranged for a quick video shoot and crafted a funny, good-natured response that made light fun of New York-style pizza and invited Stewart to visit Lou Malnati's anytime. Stewart quickly responded, and within a few days, Malnati turned up as a guest on The Daily Show. Stewart even tasted one of Malnati's pies and pronounced it "very tasty." With that, Stewart declared a "truce" in the New York-Chicago pizza war, and Malnati garnered invaluable national publicity for his pizza chain.
As if running a pizzeria wasn't stressful enough, now you have to figure out what to get for your Secret Santa! Whose idea was this anyway? Put an end to the holiday gift-giving confusion this year by arming yourself with a few simple ground rules. 1.) Look for clues of what your gift recipient might enjoy. 2.) Keep it personal, but be careful not to offend. 3.) Don't exceed your spend limit. 4.) Don't feel obligated to purchase gifts for everyone.
Pizzeria operators should quit offering special discounts on Facebook and start engaging with their fans and customers. That's the advice of Jason Hague, owner of Bada Bing! Pizzeria in Springfield, Ohio, and he knows whereof he speaks. For a small independent pizzeria, Bada Bing! boasts one of the industry's more active Facebook pages. One post earlier this month drew 541 comments, 467 likes and 512 shares. But that post's success paled in comparison to a Halloween post in which Facebook fans tried to guess how many pieces of candy were contained in a pizza box. Hague's advice to fellow operators looking to use social media in their marketing efforts? "I don't focus on specials. That's a big turn-off for your followers. I like to be engaging. Things I like to post are new specialty pizza creations, pictures of our employees and customers, and our weekly pizza giveaway," he told PMQ's Melanie Addington. "I usually post once or twice per day. I hit the lunch crowd and dinner crowd. I usually post something around 8 or 9 a.m. to get people thinking about lunch and then later in the early afternoon to get them thinking about dinner."
Fed up with crooks that prey on your delivery drivers? If you're lucky, maybe the FBI will take the case. The feds recently set up an undercover sting and arrested a suspect after a series of pizza delivery robberies in Indianapolis, according to WISHTV8.com. When a Domino's Pizza store in North Arlington got a delivery call from a phone number connected with an earlier robbery, agents arrived at the spot where the pizza was supposed to be delivered. There, they arrested a 16-year-old boy carrying a silver hammer, a Hulk mask and a cell phone that was allegedly tied to the previous robbery. The investigation was conducted as part of the FBI's Safer Streets Task Force.
Every day’s a good day for some lucky customer at Flying Pie (flyingpie.com ) in Boise, Idaho, especially if you’ve got a fairly unusual name. The promotion, called “It’s Your Day,” revolves around a certain name, such as Greta, Mitsuko or Juniper (just to take a few recent examples). Any customer with that name gets to come into the Flying Pie kitchen and make his own 10” specialty pizza for free. I.D. is required, of course, and participants can only get access to the kitchen at specific times of the day. Customers can sign up to be notified when their names are coming up on the list or they can visit Flying Pie’s website to check out the names for the next week.