Like a modern-day version of Toto pulling back the curtain to reveal the Wizard of Oz, quick-service pizza chain Domino's has launched an online platform, Domino's Live, to show consumers exactly what happens behind the scenes at one location.
Or, as Domino's spokesman Chris Brandon puts it, the brand is "opening its digital doors" for customers who love pizza and are interested in seeing how Domino's plies its trade.
The platform launched May 1 at 1 p.m. ET with feeds from a Domino's in Salt Lake City. According to the website, there are five live camera positions at this location on dough and toppings, as well as both sides of the oven. Website visitors can change views by clicking on each location. Each camera position also offers facts about each stage in the process.
The feed will air 12 hours a day from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. MT through the month of May.
"The cameras will be on basically during the hours the store is open and active," Brandon says.
According to Brandon, Domino's selected the Salt Lake City location in part because its time zone makes dinner rush viewing convenient around the country and because it's a busy store.
Domino's calls the initiative the next step in transparency. The brand launched Domino's Tracker on its website, which gives customers the names of the Domino's employees who make and deliver their pizza, in 2008.
Transparency is a big theme with the pizza brand lately.
In late 2012, Domino's debuted a new store design Brandon calls the "pizza theater," which he says is meant to be "a bit more welcoming and kind of open as far as the kitchen, pizza-making, and things in the spirit and tradition of an old-school pizzeria."
In addition, Brandon says Domino's carry-out business has grown recently because of an increased customer desire to see food prepared.
"We want to show people what we do - see all the action of pizza being made. We want to do that digitally, which is why we've launched Domino's Live," he says. "Transparency is an element, but entertainment is, too. A lot of people are surprised by how busy our stores get and how active our pizza makers are during these rushes."
In fact, the site encourages users to tune in during the busiest time, or between 7:30 p.m. ET and 12:30 a.m. ET.
The site also features a "Like Light." According to a Domino's rep, the fifth camera screen asks users to like Domino's Live. When they do so, they are asked to enter their names to receive an additional personalized message. Users are then asked to like Domino's on Facebook. Domino's has 8.2 million likes.
"We have very little to hide - we're comfortable in opening our doors and having people see what we do," Brandon says. "We're mostly just interested in continuing to engage with our fans and give them another way to kind of interact with us and be a part of what we do at Domino's. This is the next step."
A video on Domino's YouTube page explains the concept. As of Thursday, it had 2,800 views.
Domino's has more than 10,300 stores in 70 countries.
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Lisa Lacy is senior staff writer at ClickZ. In addition to ClickZ, her work has appeared in The Huffington Post, The Luxury Spot, LearnVest, MarthaStewart.com, GoodHousekeeping.com, amNewYork, and The Wall Street Journal. She's a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism.
March 19, 2014