April 18, 2012
Numerous studies have shown that positive mentions in a newspaper article or on a television or radio program are far more beneficial to a business than advertising. That’s because the mention isn’t a sales pitch, but an objective third-party validation that your operation is worth writing about. Be it a food review or a news piece on your community fundraising efforts, the power of the pen can be an advantageous ally.
Acquiring free publicity isn’t easy, but the effort it takes to get these valuable mentions in the press is well worth it. But before you start sending out press releases to newspapers or contacting prominent bloggers in your area, make sure you have something for them to write about and that you have a concise, clear and consistent message to offer.
Our Marketing Matters columnist, Scott Anthony, says a unique selling proposition (USP) is an absolute must-have. He suggests community-awareness and involvement not only because it’s the right thing to do, but because it also creates media interest.
Plus, he says, get involved with the right organization, such as the Red Cross or Make-A-Wish Foundation, and they do the PR work for you.
“The PR departments in these types of organizations have great resources that will help you promote your image for free just by aligning yourself with them,” he says. “They also have their own employees and databases that are now being made aware of you and your product. And they all like to talk about good things going on around town. Be part of that.”
To read Anthony’s tips on receiving free publicity for your pizzeria, click here.
Do You REALLY Deliver?
When the person answering your phones and your delivery driver are the only two contacts your pizzeria has with a customer, that can be a scary thing. That’s why training and follow-up on your end as the owner are crucial. Even with that, however, a delivery operation simply can’t get to know its customers on the same level as a dine-in parlor … or can it?
Customer service can set your delivery unit apart. When you think about it, your delivery customers do not have the most stringent expectations. In fact, what they want from you in terms of service is straightforward: an accurate order delivered in a reasonable amount of time.
If you can do that, and then back it up by over-delivering on their expectations, you’ve set yourself up with a loyal patron who will keep your phone ringing for years to come. Big Dave Ostrander found an interesting and effective way to do just that when he operated his pizzeria in Michigan.
“My delivery drivers became goodwill ambassadors,” Ostrander says. And the results quickly manifested with a better bottom line.
Click here to read how Big Dave’s delivery drivers over-delivered — and how you can do the same.
Read Pizza Today on Your iPad or Android Tablet!
Guess which magazine is the very first foodservice trade publication on the Apple newsstand? That’s right, Pizza Today.
To download the free Pizza Today iPad app, go to the App store on your iPad and search “Pizza Today.” Or go to the newsstand store and look for Pizza Today in the featured apps section.
If you’re on an Android tablet, go to the Android Market/Google Play store and click on “Apps.” Search “Pizza Today.”
“There’s no doubt that tablets are changing the publishing world,” says Pizza Today editor-in-chief, Jeremy White. “Right now, we have a hand in publishing’s future. As a Pizza Today reader, you’re going to have a hand in it as well. We want and need your feedback. We want you to help us paint this blank canvas. Together, we’ll take this magazine where you need it to go as a reader. It’s not our magazine — it’s yours. That will be more evident than ever when you read it on your tablet.”
To download the app for your tablet, click here .
Selecting a Distributor
The forthcoming May issue of Pizza Today contains our annual Distributors’ Directory, the most comprehensive listing of its kind in the industry. Regardless of where your pizzeria is located, the Directory can help you find nearby purveyors that carry the products your operation needs.
Choosing a distributor isn’t always easy. Oftentimes, the best fit for an operation cannot be determined by price alone. Do they carry the products you want? Do they have a flexible policy on return items? Will they give you a customer list so that you can check references?
If you are currently searching for a distributor, we’ve compiled a tidy little list of questions you should ask before you make your final decision. Click here to check it out.
Despite the current trend towards healthier consumption, fried favorites remain menu staples everywhere. From fried mozzarella or zucchini sticks to fried calamari, customers have not completely abandoned the cooking method. In fact, one of the hottest commodities in New York City right now is fried pizza!
While frying is easy (hence its popularity in kitchens), nothing tastes worse than an appetizer prepared in old, contaminated grease. In order to maximize your fryer’s performance, it’s imperative use clean oil at all times. From there, temperature is another important consideration. If it is too low, the food will absorb more oil than is desirable. Too high and the food burns.
If you’re using a fryer, check out this performance checklist to make sure you serve a perfect product every time.
When it comes time to clean your fryer, click here to learn how to do it properly:
Featured Recipe — Pancetta and Potato Pizza
The artisan movement is in full swing, and pancetta is one of the many upscale ingredients that are benefitting from it. Commonly called “Italian bacon,” pancetta lives up to its nickname by packing a flavorful punch. Here, it is paired with potatoes, garlic and herbs to give customers a white pizza to remember.
Pancetta and Potato Pizza
14-inch pizza shell
¼ pound lean pancetta, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 large redskin potatoes, peeled and sliced almost paper-thin.
For the rest of this delicious recipe, click here.