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Domino’s Dominates Pizza Chains in Brand Loyalty

A customer orders at a Domino's restaurant
photo supplied by Domino's Pizza

NEW YORK — Domino's Pizza, Inc. (NYSE:DPZ) is number one when it comes customer loyalty in the pizza shop sector. The 2013 annual ranking of brands with the highest loyalty was released by market researcher Brand Keys this month.  Some 400 brands in 54 categories were measured by 39,000 American consumers from 18 to 65 in its 17th annual Customer Loyalty Engagement Index.

Here is ranking of the top pizza chains for 2013 when it comes to customer brand loyalty.

CEO Patrick Doyle explains to Blue MauMau readers what Domino's does to rise above the competition when it comes to engaging its customers in brand loyalty. Judging from his comment, brand loyalty is really about trust.

"Our strategy since we re-launched our pizza at the beginning of 2010 has been to be as honest and transparent with our customers as possible.  As simple as it seems, telling them the truth about what we're doing well and being very direct with them when we make mistakes has built trust with our customers."

  1. Domino's
  2. Pizza Hut
  3. Papa John's
  4. Little Caesars
  5. Noble Roman's
  6. Sbarro
  7. Godfather's
  8. Chuck E. Cheese

Why does being on top of this list matter to franchise owners?

Investors who purchase franchised pizza restaurants want to make sure that they have the most bang for the buck when it comes to a brand. After all that they can do, they want a brand that can bring in loyal and repeat customers for the dollars that they pay in the form of royalties and ad funds each month to be part of a chain.

Why pay for a brand that falls flat with consumers and does little to bring guests in the door?

"The brand whose drivers come closest to meeting or even exceeding those of the category ideal is always the one whose customers will demonstrate the highest levels of engagement and loyalty over the next 12 to 18 months," observes Robert Passikoff, founder and president of Brand Keys.

For restaurants generally and pizza specifically, Brand Keys' consumer survey showed that brand value and personal selection exerted the strongest influence on consumers' decision making and brand engagement.

"As Domino's CEO states (above), it is about being transparent," says Passikoff. "For brands who can engender real levels of emotional engagement, brand loyalty is about earned believability." The New York University Ph.D. and branding analyst points out that Domino's recently re-engineered its products, which worked out well for them because consumers had increased expectations for menu selection and personalization. Passikoff points out that just in the incident of admitting there was a real market failure and then addressing it head-on showed consumers that Domino's knew how to learn from "mistakes" in the market.

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Don Sniegowski is editor of Blue MauMau, the daily news journal for franchise & small business owners. Call him at +1 (270) 321-1268, tweet @bluemaumau or email