LTOs at Marco’s Pizza ® franchise help grow loyal customer base
They say that variety is the spice of life, and at the Marco’s Pizza ® franchise we know that age-old axiom also punches up our menu choices. Having a menu that’s full of delicious, reliable favorites is critical, but it’s also important to offer customers unexpected choices.
That’s why we make good use of the Limited-Time Offer — or LTO — at Marco’s. We use LTOs as part of our ongoing marketing strategy to drive customers to our stores and also to encourage them to try new menu items and discover new favorites.
That’s what happened this year when we added two new pizzas to our menu — Spicy Fresco Three Cheese and Spicy Double Pepperoni Fresco. Both were available at participating locations for a limited time in late summer and fall. The signature ingredient on both pizzas was Marco’s special Giardiniera, an authentic Italian pepper relish that added an extra kick of spice and sophistication to the flavor profile of the pizzas.
Marco’s Pizza ® supported the promotion period with a number of “A Little Kick”-themed efforts, including a social media contest that invited customers to tell us why they or someone they know needed “a little kick” in their day or week. Winners received certificates for free pizza.
We even used the LTO to celebrate National Hot & Spicy Day — yes, there is such a day — on Aug. 19. We invited our fans to come in for a “Slice of Spice” pizza sampling event. They enjoyed a free medium slice of Marco’s new Spicy Fresco Three Cheese or Spicy Double Pepperoni Fresco pizza.
Industry experts weigh in on LTOs
LTOs are valuable means of testing, stimulating and maintaining a group of loyal customers. According to QSR magazine, quick service restaurants “have discovered that a good limited-time offer can boost brand excitement and even single-handedly drive sales.”
Carmen Vogel, a writer for restaurant technology blog On Point, says LTOs can increase revenue despite their short window.
“LTOs create opportunities to promote your brand to new market segments or to build a fan base for a new menu item,” Vogel writes. “By only offering the deal for a short time, you create a sense of urgency that can boost demand and drive profits.”
Many Marco’s franchisees and employees respond enthusiastically to LTOs. In fact, Alex Yashchishia, a General Manager at Marco’s Pizza ® in Madison, Alabama actually concocted the recipe for Grilled Chicken Florentine pizza, an LTO offered at Marco’s locations in early 2014.
Cathy Hull, Marco’s chief marketing officer, says Marco’s attention to LTOs reflects the company’s ongoing desire to keep customers satisfied and help franchisees grow their customer base.
“At Marco’s, we are always thinking of new ways to enhance the customer pizza experience,” Cathy says. “We are well aware that Americans are dining out more, and LTOs are a good way to make sure Marco’s Pizza ® franchisees benefit from this trend.”
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Clearly, Americans love good pizza, and Marco’s Pizza ® franchise has stayed ahead of the curve. We’re the fastest-growing pizza franchise in the country today: We have more than 500 stores in the U.S., and we have another 1,000 stores in development. Would you like to learn more about becoming a part of our growing brand?