If you watch TV, you’ve seen the ad. Domino’s chefs are experimenting with different combinations of cheese, dough and spices — anything to counter some of the negative criticism that’s come their way. Domino’s reads some actual customer quotes such as: “Domino’s pizza crust, to me, is like cardboard.” And: “The sauce tastes like ketchup.”
Then, of course, Domino’s explains that they’ve reinvented their pizza — thrown out their old rule book and made something completely new. So why are they trashing their own pizza, something that’s made them a household name? The Domino’s campaign is brilliant because it captures your attention — no small feat in today’s media-saturated world. Second, it’s honest, sincere and novel which you don’t find too much anymore.
I can relate to the message — I understand the criticism about Domino’s product, which to me has traditionally been a bland, low-quality product. To reinvent themselves, it is necessary to address their poor image head on, so they can then give credibility to their proposed changes — in this case, the new re
In general, trashing one’s products is a bad and dangerous idea. The risk is that the customer gets an idea that at some point, some aspect of the product was inferior could’ve backfired. Some might ask why would you ever take something less than excellent to the marketplace?
But in the case of Domino’s this stunt is interesting, intriguing and let’s be honest, took some real balls to do. Domino’s built its business on convenience based on a delivery promise, not a taste promise. Back then, they were the only national chain in the delivery game. And they grew and grew. Their success awoke the sleeping giant, Pizza Hut, who had a better product and now offers delivery, as well. So Domino’s had no choice. They either needed to improve the product to compete effectively or continue getting their butt kicked in the fast food pizza arena.
In general, the rule of thumb for all entrepreneurs is to “find a need and fill it. Domino’s did that with delivery. But society keeps moving and changing and we all need to follow it closely and be responsive to patterns of behavior. The good news if you’re a quick and gutsy entrepreneur, you can generally move, change and get to market faster than the big guys. Stay a step ahead, and you’ll be David beating out Goliath.