There have been dozens of fast food ads promoting the higher quality of their products. Many of these emphasize the importance of the fact that their products are in fact “real” (that was the subject of an edition of Bothered last year). Dominos has taken an interesting approach.
The pizza chain has just released a new line of pan pizzas, a project that the company has tried with limited success in the past. This does appear to be a step in the right direction as opposed to the caloric nightmare that was their pasta/pizza hybrid. The pizzas are only one part of the strategy though.
A major part of Domino’s new advertisement is the fact that their pizzas will now take longer to prepare. This comes from the same company that was sued because one of their drivers killed a pedestrian in an attempt to fulfill the company’s thirty-minute guarantee. While the guarantee has been dropped for a long time, this heavy emphasis on the longer delivery time is unacceptable.
Pizza is one of the most common and easily accessible take out and delivery foods in America. Pizza parties are frequently a reward for classrooms that win contests or behave themselves. Clubs around college campus use pizza as bait to lure new members to their organizations who probably wouldn’t have come otherwise. America likes, maybe even loves, pizza.
With an estimated total of nearly 70,000 pizzerias in America, Domino’s market share on the pizza business is far less than other fast food chain’s share on other food products. Local pizza parlors make up a significant portion of the market. Given Domino’s numerous competitors, it seems strange that the company would forget where it draws its major pull.
Domino’s has two major things going for it. It’s open late and it delivers food as quickly as possible. The company is now however trying to distance itself from one of its strongest attributes.
How can Domino’s remain a treasured ally of drunken people at 2 in the morning if it slows down its operation? Can someone on the verge of passing out wait 45 minutes for food of a marginally higher quality? I don’t think so.
Domino’s is not gourmet pizza. People want Domino’s because it’s fast and it’s cheap. These pan pizzas threaten everything the company stands for. Fast food loses its appeal when it’s not fast. Domino’s must reaffirm its commitment to get pizza to the people as quickly as possible regardless of quality.