Domino’s: A Flexible and Social Brand

Domino’s Pizza, an industry-leading brand, continues to pave the way when it comes to constantly connecting with their crowd.

What they’re working on now is the Ultimate Delivery Vehicle designed by the crowd. This particular crowdsourcing effort is a contest in which the car’s designers (mainly automotive enthusiasts) will earn $50,000 for their suggestions. According to the site, the contest will be in five stages:

-Phase 1: Industrial Design Conceptual sketch and rendering competition
-Phase 2: Packaging and vehicle layout collaboration exercise
-Phase 3: Interior design sketch and rendering competition
-Phase 4: Surface Modeling competition
-Phase 5: Photo-realistic rendering and animation competition

For this contest, Domino’s is partnering with Local Motors, a company specializing in manufacturing crowdsourced auto designs. Local Motors hosted the contest that designed the DARPA XC2V car as well as The Carbon Motors E7 (a law enforcement vehicle designed by law enforcement).

But as we marvel at this latest gesture let’s just take a moment and look at what really sets Domino’s apart.

For a company that depends upon the quality of a familiar product no matter where you’re shopping for it, the brand has proved itself to be highly adaptable.

Consider this. The day that Domino’s joined Twitter was the day that a highly-offensive rogue employee-created video about Domino’s food went viral. That’s when they STARTED having the social media conversation, when they were already behind the ball and on the defense about disparaging online content. They responded to the video (eventually) and started tweeting, up-leveled their social strategies, posted videos and pictures online and ultimately grew their fan-base 100 fold.

In 2010, Domino’s had gotten a reputation for bland pizza and instead of hiding from this observation, they asked their fans online and in focus groups to help revamp the recipe and sales went from $11 to $23.6 million in ONE YEAR.

Earlier this year, Domino’s launched ThinkOven, a feedback platform for anyone who engages with the Domino’s brand to make suggestions about uniforms, recipes, customer interaction, anything.

Now, Advertising Age has referred to Domino’s as a “mega brand” and it is comfortably the number one pizza delivery company in the U.S. (operating in more than 60 countries worldwide). A classic brand that has been around since the 60’s is not afraid to run to catch up and re-invent itself time and again. A hard value to embrace, let alone master.

Domino’s went from a brand whose first tweet was on the defense to a company that is asking its customers for input on anything and everything – down to its recipes, new logo, and what kind of wheel would most suit a pizza delivery guy.

What else can we learn from Domino’s? Is it ever too late for customer engagement?

One response to “Domino’s: A Flexible and Social Brand

  1. Pingback: How Domino’s Did an About-Face on Crowdsourcing and Customer Engagement | Innovation Management