In 1960, brothers Tom and James Monaghan bought a small, struggling pizzeria in Michigan for $500. Eight months later, James traded his half for their VW Beetle delivery car. Bad move?
Absolutely. Today, his ex-share rakes in more than $10 billion annually.
In 1965 Tom renamed his pizzeria Domino’s. And despite dealing with thieving college kids, he was able to franchise. By 1985, Domino’s was the fastest growing pizza business in the U.S. and launched the 30-minute rule: your pizza delivered within 30 minutes or free! Customers loved it and by 1998, Tom sold Domino’s for a cool billion.
In 2008, the economy went belly up. The world was demoralized and life didn’t taste so great. Domino’s neither. Sales were at an all-time low. What good was a 30-minute delivery if the crust tasted like cardboard? It was re-launch or die.
Enter marketing guru Russell Weiner in a superhero cape. The guy actually created commercials admitting their pizza wasn’t great. That they’d changed the cheese, the way it melts and invested 200,000 hours retraining every pizza maker. People ate up the honesty. Domino’s stock went from $9 to $180, outperforming Amazon, Apple and Google.
But they didn’t stop there. They revisited the menu, allowed customers to track orders and introduced ordering via text and Alexa. They even tested delivery by drone!
Almost 60 years since delivery by VW Beetle, they’re still on top. Stretching the dough, evolving with the times.
Original DomiNick’s pizza in Michigan in 1960.
LONG TERM OR BEAT(LE)
In the age of instant messaging, the only thing that’s instant is… messaging. And getting a few likes, of course. But building (big) things still needs a lot of time, effort, and patience. Today, long term thinking can still get you further than ever.
© Story by Tarek Issa.