After many years without any close competition (or ones that were any good anyway) we have found out that the No: 2 pizza chain, Eagle Boys (Aussie group) will be opening 200 metres up the road from us in late March.
We have already commenced our guerilla marketing against this onslaught with blogs on our website on how the chains are not as cheap as they appear by outlining their undersized “large” pizzas, and things like hidden / extra costs from what appears on their glossy brochures that inundate our letter boxes each week.
Our FREE PIZZA letter goes to the printers this week and we will be distributing 200 a week right up to, and the opening weeks, about 1000 in total. We will be saturating the immediate suburbs to which they will drawing the bulk of their business. What we are aiming for is to pull in new customers who haven’t tried us (for what ever reason) knowing that our product once tasted will bring them back as customers - proven in previous scenario. Should they then try Eagle Boys because of their low price we are confident that they will come back to us. If the letter goes to existing customers it is worded as a thank you for your custom.
One thing they don’t do is roadside wobble boards, so we are planning a catchy wording to do our own on the roadside where they will be situated. One good thing is their position is in a bulky goods retail complex which has poor entry access - a side street off a major road that has a medium strip blocking direct access. They have to go up the side street and go around a small round about and come back down to enter the site. We can “ambush” traffic with our wobble boards as they figure out how to get into the site.
We now have Facebook fan page going and will use this to further promote our business and get “fans” to post how good we are in comparison to the chains. Plus we will have ongoing inducements to come in and then come in more often.
A newspaper advert is now at our graphic designer to get it ready in print format and we will be doing advertising in our local free paper with a 5cm high x page width box advert. The format is simple and is planned to get people to our website. It will just have our theme “Real Pizzas - Unreal Taste” boldly across the top 3/4 width of the advert with “bigger, fresher, tastier” under this then our website address in big bold letters under this with our logo and phone # on the right corner. No prices, deals or anything as we are on the high end of pricing and don’t want to get into a price war. We are aiming at the inquisitive nature of people to check out who we are. My indepth research has shown that if you promote a website and nothing else people will look at it out of curiousity - look and you will seek.
Following our free pizza mailout we will then letterbox drop our new menus to household in the catchment area.
About a week before they are due to open our shopping centre where we are situated will be having a 12th birthday celebration on Saturaday 20th March. There will be lots of activities going on and we will do free pizzas during the 11am - 1pm rush inside the centre. We will also be doing our childrens dough tossing activity, having a free raffle to win a $100 pizza party, as well as handing out menus and special offers brochures.
As I only found out about this yesterday (they have kept it very close to their chest) we are still planning other activities to combat them. We want to saturate our activity prior to their offical notice of opening so we don’t look like we are be reactionary and are in panic mode.
We know we are going to be in for a patchy ride for some months as people try them, and of course I expect them to be aggressively marketing themselves in the opening weeks, but hopefully we can jump the gun on them and have them on the backfoot to some degree.
My supplier has volunteered his assistance to gives us what ever help he can so we can heavily market ourselves. In the next few days I will be speaking to drink suppliers to see what they will do to help and also local business where we can cross promote.
Nothing like some stiff healthy new competition to get the brain working overtime