Domino’s Pizza UK and Ireland is gearing up for a multi-million pound advertising blitz in the second half of 2007, in a bid to push sales in the final quarter of the year.
It will kick off with the launch of the “Scrummy” pizza, which has a topping that includes six different types of meat. It is to celebrate the Rugby World Cup this September, and is aimed at men watching the tournament.
The campaign, which will break in August, will be supported with TV ads featuring Leicester Tigers and Samoan rugby star Alesana Tuilagi.
The Rugby campaign comes ahead of a major push in the last quarter of the year that aims to drive sales further than the same period last year.
In its results for the 26 weeks to July 1, Domino’s chief executive Steve Hemsley says it had performed well against strong results from last year, including the football World Cup, but he adds it remains “mindful of still more challenging comparatives, particularly in the last quarter”.
Domino’s deputy chief executive Chris Moore says the pizza delivery chain has held back its advertising to concentrate on the latter half of the year. The campaign is expected to support more new product development, although Moore declines to give any details.
He adds that it has not decided whether to end its sponsorship of The Simpsons on Sky One. It has been using the slot to support its online business, which has grown by 60.3% in June alone.
The chain would be allowed to retain the sponsorship for brand messages under the new Ofcom regulations on advertising products that are high in fat, salt and sugar to children.
The group has doubled its National Advertising Fund since 2005, when it spent £8m on advertising, due to higher sales and higher contributions from franchises.
Domino’s reported a 35% increase in pre-tax profits to £8.3m – from £6.1m last year – with like-for-like sales up by 14.9%. It expects to exceed its full-year forecasts. It says that the wet summer has led to fewer barbecues and an increase in pizza sales.