Our rapidly growing pizza brand posted a 23.5% revenue growth in 2015 and Marco’s President Byron Stephens shares why
Marco’s Pizza®’s position as one of the fastest growing pizza franchises in the nation continues to draw the attention of leading industry publications. President Bryon Stephens recently shared his best practices for growing a franchise in the areas of marketing, sales, franchisee support and product development with leading industry publication Franchise Business Review.
“Bryon Stephens believes keeping the brand current and involved in the community, while providing franchisees with extensive support, has helped achieve this growth,” according to the Franchise Business Review article. Bryon gave insight on our areas of strength that contribute to our being one of the fastest-growing pizza franchises in the nation — community-centric marketing, strong franchisee support and continual menu development.
“Over the years we have built a brand that strives to be an integral part of the local community that at the same time fosters a strong franchisee community,” Bryon says. Franchise Business Review shares Bryon’s tips for franchisors as they look to grow their businesses, singling us out as a franchise to watch.
Our community-centric marketing establishes us as a brand that cares
Bryon emphasizes the importance of creating strong ties with the community as a brand. Marco’s Pizza works hard to integrate marketing campaigns that blend brand awareness with community engagement. As an example, when we introduced fresh spinach on our menu we asked customers to bring in a can of spinach to our store to exchange for a free pizza that featured fresh spinach as a topping. We collected the donated food and then delivered the thousands of cans to local food banks. For the introduction of S’mores to our dessert menu, we creatively integrated the camping theme, donating $1 for each brownie sold to local youth organizations that take underprivileged kids camping.
Marco’s continually strives to delight customers and reduce costs
Marco’s Pizza’s 5-star guest experience focus is backed by sophisticated technology that pinpoints how stores need to improve in order to wow customers and keep them coming back and ordering more pizza, Bryon tells Franchise Business Review. We focus on a straightforward “Promise of Delight” to customers – “If you aren’t delighted, tell us. We’ll make it right by you.”
Bryon also mentions several other key ways Marco’s works with franchisees to increase potential profitability and reduce costs. Vice President of Purchasing Don Vlcek reports weekly to franchisees the savings that Marco’s Pizza was able to negotiate on both food and equipment, and how that affects each store. Vice President of Store Profitability Jim Strachan, a franchisee himself with highly profitable stores, oversees profit and loss analysis and evaluations for franchisees and gives tips on increasing profit and reducing costs as part of monthly company web broadcasts.
Franchisee support is a top priority
At Marco’s, our best-in-class training ranges from hands-on product training in our test/training kitchen to classroom learning on running a business that covers everything from profit and loss statements to an ongoing eLearning curriculum for General Managers and employees. A dedicated Development Director helps franchisees with each step of the process including site selection, store construction, legal requirements and an intranet resource that leads them through what needs to be done by when. From construction to grand opening day, we provide guidance to ensure quality, efficiency and maximum community presence.
When best practices are identified, they either become Standard Operating Procedures for all stores to follow, or recommended practices that may work in a franchisee’s market. Marco’s Pizza shares those best practices through various internal communications methods, such as a weekly eNewsletter and monthly web broadcasts. We also believe strongly in our seven Cultural Beliefs. These beliefs, such as Execute Excellence and Embody Trust, provide the framework by which we do business.