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Opportunity Begging to Be Mined
John Correll Publisher:
Correll Consulting, LLC
www.correllconcepts.com Published: December
something missing in the wide world of pizza
decades we've been washing down our 'za with frosty cola and beer. And so be it.
Both beverages go well with pizza. But here's a little secret a slice of
pizza married with a glass of wine can go great together. Bite o' pizza,
sip o' wine, bite o' pizza, sip o' wine
it can be pizza-eating heaven.
this is based on personal experience. Wine has been my pizza-eating beverage of
choice for over 10 years. And for my wife, as well (who happens to be a serious
short, there's a big wine-selling opportunity waiting to be tapped in the world
of pizza. Here, I believe, is how that opportunity could be actualized
in three easy steps.
1: Create an Offering of Pizza-perfect Wine/s.
step done by wine-makers.)
DESIGN THE PERFECT PIZZA BEVERAGE: Start at ground zero. Design a wine
or perhaps several wines made specifically to enhance, or at least
complement, the flavor of pizza. Be daring and unconventional. If need be, do
some mixing and blending. We're not interested in enology convention and tradition
here. Our objective is to create the perfect wine for pizza.
Which pizza? you ask. Start with the universal favorite Pepperoni
Pizza. Then, if necessary, branch out from there.
DO TASTE-TESTING WITH PIZZA-EATERS: Use the palate of dedicated pizza-eaters
(those who eat pizza three or more times a month) as the guide during
the wine design phase. In other words, to arrive at the perfect pizza wine
do wine-with-pizza taste testing using focus groups of dedicated pizza-lovers.
And don't allow preconceived notions of which wine is best suited for which
food to adulterate the research. Present the taste-testers a full array
of options to select from. It might be that pizza-eaters might find, say, a sweeter
wine to be the perfect pizza flavor enhancer who knows?
TARGET THE BRAND: Brand this wine or line of wines with
laser beam focus on pizza-eaters. Pizza is the niche here, nothing
else. All the other foods of the world are taken care of by all the other wines
of the world. This wine is about pizza
period. (Although, of course,
some pizza-eaters might discover down the road that their favorite pizza wine
also happens to go very well with certain of their favorite pasta dishes, too!)
COMMUNICATE A THIS IS FOR PIZZA MESSAGE: In creating
the brand for this wine (or line of wines), formulate a name, logo, graphics,
product description, and bottle design that shouts Pizza-lover, this is
it the perfect beverage for your perfect pizza! Also, of course,
design the brand to fit the demographics and psychographics of these consumers.
Most likely we're talking mainstream America, not upper crust.
PRICE IT FOR VOLUME SELLING: Design and price this product so it can
sell as a reasonably-priced by-the-glass house wine. I believe there's
an opportunity to switch pizza-eaters from their current beverage to a comparably-priced
glass or carafe of wine. But the product will fail if the goal is to upsell
pizza consumers to an expensive bottle or, worse yet, an overpriced glass. (More
in Step 3.)
2: Market It Broadly.
(This step done by wine-makers and distributors in combination
with pizzerias and pizza companies.)
NATIONALLY ADVERTISE THE CONCEPT: Install a broad-based advertising
campaign that introduces the pizza-eating public to the concept of Pizza
Wine an exciting new drink for pizza. I think billboards would work
well for this. But I'm no expert on ad channels. Once the advertising folks get
involved, they'll figure out the most effective media.
EXPLOIT PUBLICITY: This product is a perfect candidate for a publicity
campaign. A creative PR/publicity firm should be able to get it featured on virtually
every food channel, food program, and food column in America. Think about it.
A new beverage designed expressly for enhancing the pizza-eating experience
and designed from the input of hundreds of dedicated pizza-lovers (i.e.,
the focus group testers). What food writer or program producer wouldn't pick up
on it? What pizza-eater wouldn't try it? If for no other reason than out of sheer
TRADE SHOWS & MAGAZINES: Introduce pizzeria owners to the product by exhibiting
at the annual pizza trade shows such as Pizza
Expo and the New York Pizza
Show. Also consider taking out ads in the national trade mags such as
Pizza Marketing Quarterly (PMQ)
and Pizza Today.
PROMOTE IT ON-SITE: For maximum impact, wine-makers and distributors
should provide a Pizza Wine Sales Kit for pizzerias and restaurants.
It might include a window or lobby banner, wall signs, table tents, and menu clip-ons.
Plus it would contain server training materials (like an interactive CD) for training
servers in what makes the product unique, how to serve it, and how to answer customer
3: Serve It Right.
(This step done by pizzerias.)
OBTAIN THE RIGHT PIZZA WINE GLASS: What's that?
It's a glass that says wine without the effeteness of traditional
wine glasses. It's a vessel that pizza-eaters would feel comfortable drinking
from. As I envision it
it has a no-nonsense cylindrical chamber rather
than an awkward bulbous oval chamber. It has a short, stocky stem rather than
a long, skinny stem. It's made of thick glass rather than thin. It's heavy rather
than light. And it won't easily break in the dishroom. Finally, it's sized to
hold 5.5 to 6.0 ounces of wine when filled to 1/2-inch of the top. So that a five-to-six
ounce portion looks like a glass full o' wine and not like one of
those traditional half-filled, skimpy-looking glasses of vino served in places
pretending that their clientele consists of wine connoisseurs. Forget the baloney
about how a wine glass needs to be half-filled so that customers can sniff the
bouquet. Pouring a half-full glass is fine when a person has ordered a bottle.
But for wine ordered by-the-glass, it should be filled. Most wine drinkers
view a glass served half-empty as nothing more than a ruse for chintzing on their
and, thereby, serving them less than what they're paying for.
a sketch of one idea for a Pizza Wine Glass.
Pizza Wine Glass
(Approximate dimensions in inches)
FILL THE GLASS TO 1/2-INCH OF THE TOP: Why 1/2-inch of the top? Because
when filled closer than 1/2-inch of the top the server invariably spills
it while carrying it to the table, making for a wet, messy table top. When filled
lower than 1/2-inch of the top, it appears like the customer is being chintzed
a.k.a. getting screwed on their beverage. This is not the impression
that you want customers to have because it causes them to not order the
product again or, in some cases, to not return to the restaurant again. So, for
Pizza Wine to make it, the glass needs to be filled to 1/2-inch of the
top in a glass sized to hold 5.5 to 6.0 ounces of wine when filled to that point.
PRICE A GLASS OF HOUSE PIZZA WINE AT $3.99 OR LESS: Price a 2-glass
carafe at $7.49 or less. Price a 4-glass carafe at $13.99 or less. Why $3.99 per
glass? Because once the price goes over $4 many typical pizza-eaters won't buy
it. Four bucks for a few ounces of house wine is simply a shaft deal
in the mind of much of mainstream America. Pizza-eaters are accustomed to paying
$3-$4 for a bottle or large mug of beer. So many of them won't have a problem
with paying a similar amount for what appears to be a generously-filled
glass of wine. But very few of them will choose a beverage option that results
in what appears to them to be paying more and getting less.