How do you climb to the mountaintop in the pizza business? You’ll have the opportunity to learn about routes already taken from our panel of super-successful operators, all of whom oversee restaurants that bring in $1 million-plus in annual revenues with a single unit. They’ll share methods—and a few trade secrets—for outcompeting the big chains and establishing a dominant marketing position. Panelists include: Tony Caputo, of Red Rose Pizzeria in Spring-field, Mass.; Tony Gemignani of Tony’s Pizza Napoletana in San Francisco; Mark Gold of Pizza Shuttle in Milwaukee; and Ray McConn of Mother Bear’s Pizza in Bloomington, Ind. Moderated by Pizza Today President and Publisher Pete Lachapelle.
Million Dollar Panel
Mark Gold, Ray McConn, Tony Caputo, Tony Gemignani and moderator Pete Lachapelle
On Marketing: I like to bring something different to my pizzeria that will make writer’s write. Whether it’s competing in competitions or bringing in a unique oven. Create hype by being diverse.
On Loyalty Programs: It consists of the customer spending so many dollars then giving them something free which is usually a new menu item.
On Social Media: We use Facebook primarily to make a connection with our customers and not for deals and offers.
On Hiring Process: I don’t look at the front of the applications, I just look at the back. I look at job history.
On Making it to a Million: Expanding our menu and adding an over flow room for parties kicked us over the mark.
On Hiring Process: We call references. References are huge. Once you get into a conversation with a reference they will usually drop a word here or there to let you know.
On Labor Costs: When it comes to labor costs don’t compare yourself to others. You have your own unique situation.
On Profit: If you don’t profit you’re not doing your job.