PizzaRev Heats Up Engagement with Rewards Program

The pizza chain industry is undergoing a surge of innovation to bolster consumer engagement. From shoes that can order pizza, to drones that can deliver pizza, and apps that can monitor pizza delivery, the pizza chains are seemingly doing everything possible to remain connected to the consumer.

However, there are still some brands focused on tried and true methods. Consider PizzaRev, for instance. The company wanted to launch a rewards program to establish a better connection with its consumers. The challenge, however, was the best way to teach consumers about the program.

Warming up

PizzaRev was founded in 2012 in Los Angeles by Rodney Eckerman and Irv Zuckerman, and their sons Nicholas Eckerman and Jeff Zuckerman. The company’s name, standing for Pizza Revolution, stems from the idea of empowering customers to build their own pizzas.

The company, over five years, has expanded to 46 stores in 11 U.S. states and Mexico. In an attempt to capitalize on the loyalty of the consumers visiting these sites, PizzaRev decided to launch a rewards program, called “Rev Rewards,” in mid-2016.

The program, which would debut on the company’s mobile app, would target current consumers, with the hope of encouraging first-time customers as well.

“Upon launch, our main goals centered on adoption of the program; we hoped to convert at least 10% of our email database to become ‘Rev Rewards’ members, and by this time in the life of the campaign, to have at least 10% of revenue flow through our rewards program,” says Jeff Zuckerman, Chief Marketing Officer at PizzaRev.

PizzaRev, in order to accomplish this goal, would have to sync the email database and the program, but how?

Hot and ready

PizzaRev decided the best approach to launching the campaign was to develop a partnership with Punchh, a cloud-based technology platform that builds engagement, and customized experiences in the restaurant industry. Features and capabilities for the platform include the ability to segment customers, predict customer behavior, create and execute targeted campaigns, and track performance in real-time.

It allowed PizzaRev to tackle the biggest challenge of the campaign, an all-hands-on-deck approach.

“Every department needed to be fully aligned to execute a successful integration and launch of the program,” says Zuckerman. “It tests the strength of your business systems and procedures and communication skills.”

To promote the launch, PizzaRev used in-store marketing, social media, email, and app notifications on the mobile app. However, the messages had to be specific to the audience, more specifically the consumer.

“You can’t just blast out a message and hope that it will be successful,” says Shyam Rao, CEO at Punchh. “No, today you have to make sure the message is relevant, authentic, in order to create a real relationship with the consumer.”

And the two companies did just that, and as a result produced quite a successful campaign.

Delivering success

The rewards program, which is currently available for PizzaRev consumers, has converted nearly 14% of email subscribers to Rev Rewards members. In addition, 13% of transactions are flowing through the program.

“A program like this is always on and it’s always evolving, so there are lessons learned every day,” says Zuckerman. “So, while we did breathe a sigh of relief when it was launched, we did also realize that to make the most of the program, the real work was ahead of us.”

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