Papa’s Story

Marketers spend much time and energy figuring out how best to create brand loyalty for their clients. Brand loyalty can be described as the extent to which consumers are faithful to a brand (repeat purchases), regardless of marketing pressure by competing brands (Business Directory).

An effective way to create brand loyalty among todays consumer is to create a narrative your target audience can relate to. “Storytelling—in its many forms—is one of the most powerful tools for presenting the truths of your product, service, or brand” (MarketingProfs). A storytelling approach can “help brands more empathically interconnect with the buying minds of their customers. There is simply more for them to hold onto” (MarketingProfs).

Lets look at this narrative Papa John’s put together in 2011.

“Stories are slices of life that can subtly reflect bits and pieces of common ground between consumer and brand” (MarketingProfs).  In what ways does “Papa John Telling the Papa John’s Story” execute this well?

Nostalgia. John Schnatte, CEO begins his monologue by reminiscing about when he was young. “When I was growing up as a boy, my mentor was my papa.”  The audience relates, thinking about their own experience growing up.

Family values. Speaking warmly of his grandfather, he says that since the beginning, Papa John’s has never forgot what mattered most. “He had a fanaticism of doing things in a high-class manner…One of our fundamental beliefs from the get-go was we were gonna be a family run, independent pizzeria–no matter how big we got.”  Even though Papa John’s is a franchise with over 4,000 stores nationwide, Schnatte asks that you still think of the company as a mom-and-pop shop.

Just like you. When I was fifteen I was wershing [washing] dishes…and I hated washing dishes and the…brothers gave me a raise, and I got to make pizzas. I worked as a dishwasher for close to five years. I hated washing dishes. I got a raise. Now I’m starting to relate to this guy! Throughout the video, we see scenes of this millionaire working side by side on the assembly line with his “teammates”, laughing and getting his hands dirty, “saucin” and “slappin the dough”. This can make an audience think he’s in the kitchen making pizza. He’s not.

Care about employees. “The thing I am most proud of today is our 80,000 team members worldwide, they don’t do anything second rate…[they] put their best foot forward…We founded Papa John’s with two simple premises: take care of your people, and make the best pizza you can.” Papa John’s isn’t like other companies that treat their employees badly. Schnatte cares about his workers and values them so much he calls them his teammates.

Do you think Schnatte really feels this way about his teammates, after comments he made suggesting Papa John’s would cut employees’ hours and raise prices in anticipation of the Affordable Healthcare mandate?

Better Ingredients, Better Pizza, Better get a second Job

Are you loyal to any brands because of a story you were told? Research the WHO behind the marketing in order to distinguish between what the company wants you to see and what’s actually there.

W/P Option 2: 04/19


Filed under Campaigns, Ethics, Media Literacy, WP

6 responses to “Papa’s Story

  1. Jake Goraj

    Like the overall tone of this post, I think it’s just an attempt to make the audience feel like Schnatte’s a regular, everyday guy. Talking about his childhood and humble beginnings makes the viewer feel like they can relate, so, even though they’ll be ordering their pizza from a multi-million dollar company, it sort of feels like buying a pizza from your local pizza shop.

  2. Casey J

    Nice post Doe! Storytelling approaches, like the featured Papa John’s video, are pretty successful at put a human face to a corporate brand or entity. When I read your comments on storytelling as marketing tool I was instantly reminded of the major re-branding Domino’s under went back in 2009.

    While one could argue that this video serves more of a public relations purpose than a marketing one, it still demonstrates the effectiveness of storytelling to connect with your audience on a human level. I’m sure that seeing this type of transformational narrative helped Domino’s to gain a loyal base of consumers.

  3. Craig goodman

    John Schnatter has been much in the news saying that the “Obamacare” health care reforms will cost his company something like $5-8 million dollars annually against total revenue of $1.2 billion, and he is therefore going to be “forced” to increase the price of his product somewhere around 10-14 cents per pizza
    Papa John Schnatter lives in a 40-thousand square foot home. Yes a 40-THOUSAND SQUARE FOOT HOME!! with a 22-car garage. His net worth is estimated to be around 500 million dollars.
    A Papa John’s delivery driver earns $6-7 per hour. Somehow I think he can afford 5-8 million not sure how he’ll do it. He may have to sell his guest house which is worth approx. 7 million dollars!!
    I honestly don’t think he gives a damn about his 80,000 team members, just his board of directors and stock holders.

  4. James Wicks

    Awesome! I really like this post it makes me feel good. I don’s like Papa Johns pizza but after reading this post I want to go to Papa Johns anyway. Papa John Schnatter is super rich and super nice. I want to be just like him when I grow up. If I become as rich as him I would have 20 kids and send them all the the best private schools. MAKE THAT MONEY JOHN!
    I also like how much he cares about his 80,000 team members, just his board of directors and stock holders.

  5. Miranda

    Usually when I watch commercials and hear a story, I trust in the company and believe what they are telling me is the truth… But this post shed light on how that is not always the case and I’m glad I have read it, because now I will make sure to research the company behind the product before I spend my money. Good Job Doe!

  6. Pingback: The Metrics of Pizza | pizza chica

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