4 March 2014 - 9:34am | posted by | 0 comments

Domino’s head of digital reveals secrets to its social success as company sees online orders soar

Having trended naturally on Twitter following its Meltdown campaign, and being debated on social for engaging with a troll, Domino’s Pizza is big business on social media: and this has translated into digital sales, as the brand revealed that 30.9 per cent of online orders were taken through a mobile device.

But how does the pizza delivery company handle its social? The Drum caught up with Nick Dutch, head of digital marketing at Domino’s Pizza to discuss strategy, melting delivery men, and what to do if someone claims they burnt their bits on a pizza.

“Generally, our principle would be don’t engage with a troll, especially if you look at some of the other stuff he was doing. At first we gave a straight answer back, but when he didn’t go away we thought we’d have a bit of fun with it,” Dutch admitted.

People see Domino’s as being strong on social media, Dutch added, referring to campaign such as Domino’s Meltdown, which saw fans offered a year’s supply for free pizza if their tweet turned up the heat on a sunlamp enough to ‘melt’ the arms of an ice delivery man.

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The competition led to the #DominosMeltdown hashtag trending “pretty much all day in the UK”, Dutch said, with a hint of pride.

Interaction with fans is designed to play a key part in campaigns, he added. “We try to, generally speaking, make sure we have a focal activation, which will provide participation and interaction of some sort. A lot of our strategy at the moment is about our delivery guys being heroes, so this was an extension to our TV campaign.”

However, it’s not good enough to come up with a campaign and then just try to come up with a social aspect to try and increase mentions. “It’s important to make social a focus, rather than just an add-on at the end,” he added.

Another recent campaign by Domino’s Pizza, created by Dutch alongside Iris worldwide, saw Domino’s Pizza take to mobile dating service Tinder, promoting ‘cheesy’ one-liners and ‘saucy’ chats.

“We wanted to grab a slice of the Tinder action as finding new and fun ways of engaging with our audience is a big part of what we do. We’ve already had hundreds of matches!” he added.

Dutch revealed that about 90 per cent of content for Domino’s social feed is planned in advance, with an annual calendar, as well as a social media monthly content calendar for upcoming events. There are weekly executions, Dutch explained, which are planned at least a week in advance.

Most recently, this saw Domino’s celebrate the NME Awards, as the pizza brand was the official food provider for the music event.

As a sponsor, the company decided that it was “appropriate for us to play socially”.

“We try to be fairly quick in the game, and we continue to have that mentality and try to be better. We have a sort of duel mentality: to be creative and build ongoing relationships…we’re complementary to people’s passions, such as gaming and film.

“People are most interested in gaming or football or the X Factor than in the pizza they’re going to eat,” he admitted. “If we put these relationships together then it’s a bit more interesting.”

Overall, with Domino’s releasing its figures, it is a time when the company is looking to the future.

Profit before tax, excluding Germany and Switzerland, increased 11.6 per cent to £55.2m, with online system sales increasing 28.2 per cent to £338m.

“Back in the last year and this year, it’s about tying things together a bit better. It’s about deciding which channels are working and which ones we can improve, and about content. For example, if you have a blog, that content will create a bond that you can use on social: the channels are in the same universe.”

And what does Domino’s Pizza have planned for the months ahead? Dutch was very cryptic on this front, only hinting that there was “cool stuff planned”.

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