Domino’s move to fill potholes is pure brilliance, brand experts say

Domino’s CEO talks turnaround goals, strategies for success

Patrick Doyle, who started his career in finance, talks about the chain’s big turnaround goals and how to succeed in business.

Domino’s announced it’s no longer just a pizza joint but a company on a mission to fix American’s crumbling infrastructure – one pothole at a time.

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The chain announced earlier this week it’s teaming up with towns and cities throughout the U.S. to fix potholes, with the goal of “paving” the way for its pizza delivery trucks.

While the news of the campaign felt like it came out of “left field” to many social media users, who questioned why a restaurant company would do this, several brand experts say the stunt is pure brilliance. 

“This is a terrific idea and a smart move by Domino’s. Consumers across industries are no longer just looking for companies to sell them products. They’re looking for brands that are authentic, purposeful and committed to something more than exclusively delivering ROI,” David Srere, co-CEO and chief strategy officer at branding firm, Siegel+Gale, told FOX Business.

Ian Wishingrad, founder and creative director at BigEyedWish also agreed, adding that while most business stunts like this don’t really get anywhere, this one is different on many fronts.

“This is unexpected, smart and irreverent. Plus, they’re filling a hole in the market! Dominos has been very good at writing the headline first, then work backwards, and that’s the key to a successful PR stunt,” he said.

The pizza maker’s new slogan is, “Oh yes we did,” with images of its logo on dump trucks labeled, “Paving for Pizza.” The company also added that it plans to provide grants to up to 20 towns that need the work the most.

Domino's Pizza has launched a campaign to repair potholes in towns across the country. (Domino's Pizza)

After that, many Twitter users were quick to start petitions to nominate their local towns for funding.

One user even commented on how this stunt is so much better than IHOP’s marketing move last week to drum up press around its name change to IHOb, which it revealed stands for burgers.

Many brands experts agreed, saying they thought IHOb’s name change could be detrimental for the 60-year-old chain in the long run.

“The decision to change the name may have been the dumbest decision ever made in the world of branding. Brand equity is precious. It takes years to build, and it is the cornerstone of customer loyalty. IHOP just decided to throw it away,” Srere said.

Allen Adamson, co-founder of Metaforce, a marketing strategy firm, said he thinks customers are going to see more of these big marketing moves from older brands down the road because they are “under increased pressure now to not only make good products, but to give back in a way.”

“Cheerios featured Box Tops [for Education] to fund local schools for years in one of the most successful promotions of its time. But now, because everyone's doing it, it's becoming harder and harder to stand out,” Adamson said.