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Pizza 73 brings in fundraising dough via mobile

Canadian pizza restaurant Pizza 73 has seen a six percent increase since last year in mobile or Web-based orders.

As mobile continues to gain momentum for pizza chains, Pizza 73 is among a growing group of brands now making a bigger marketing push using the medium.Partnering with Children’s Miracle Network for its annual “Slices for Smiles” campaign, Pizza 73 customers will be able to make a donation to Children’s Miracle Network when placing their order by mobile app.

“Pizza 73 is successful because they offer a clear value to customers while making the donation process easy and repeatable,” said Cezar Kolodziej, President and CEO of Iris Mobile, Chicago.

“The widespread reliance on mobile devices presents significant opportunity for food and beverage marketing,” he said. “People are sensitive to discounts and promotions when it comes to food and beverage purchases.”

“Also, these types of purchases are often unplanned and impulsive, making the timing of discount and promotion information key to marketing success.”

Mr. Kolodziej is not affiliated with Pizza 73. He commented based on his expertise on the subject.

Pizza 73 did not meet press deadline.

Slices for smiles
From April 21-May 11, consumers can buy a nine-inch plain pizza animated with a smiley face made of pepperoni slices for $4.99.

The idea behind the product is to integrate the feel good aspect of donations through food.

In addition to buying the discounted menu items, customers can support the fundraiser by purchasing a smile coupon, available at Pizza 73 locations for $1, or by topping their telephone, online or mobile orders with a donation.

Slices for Smiles is Pizza 73’s annual campaign that donates a portion of proceeds from the sale of special menu items.

In 2013, the restaurant chain raised $300,000 for Children’s Miracle Network and its 14 member children’s hospitals, bringing the grand total of funds since partnership in 2008, to more than $1.3 million, according to the company’s Web site.

At the same time, mobile donations are gaining steam.

For example, restaurant rewards platform Mogl received an update late last year which gives users the option to donate their rewards money to local food banks.

Mogul diners earn 10 percent cash back when they eat at any restaurant supported by the platform. When users earn rewards, they can choose to donate all or some of the cash to a local food bank. Users can also compete with others to see who can contribute the most money.

This social entrepreneurship of using business to help solve real world problems gives individuals an opportunity to participate at their own convenience.

Appetite for apps
The Pizza 73 app lets pizza lovers create a personalized pie with their fingers and reorder their favorite menu items in three taps.

Menu and special items are all accessible via the app based on a mobile device’s built-in GPS. Consumers can opt for in-home delivery or choose to pick up their order.

“Mobile is a great way for consumers to donate to charitable causes and people are becoming increasingly comfortable these types of transactions.  Mobile donations can be executed in seconds and confirmed just as quickly, giving people peace of mind that their money has been received,” Mr. Kolodziej said.

“Donations will increasingly be handled via mobile because of the convenient and immediate nature of the medium,” he said. “Most everyone can participate in these types of transfers and  the personal nature of mobile as a means of donation makes it additionally attractive.

“Mobile donations are most certainly an innovation that we will see more and more frequently in the future.”

Final Take:
Michelle is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York