A Doughy Tale of Social Media ROI: Twitter + Humor Helps Naked Pizza Find Both Customers and Investors

Naked Pizza Uses Twitter To Gain Investors, CustomersFor its light-hearted Tweets over the years, Naked Pizza has always been one of our favorite foodies to follow (see our previous post). An article in The Wall Street Journal this week reinforces our view, demonstrating yet again how the New Orleans-based chain known for its all-natural  ingredients has achieved striking results from its social media strategy.

Besides bringing in customers, Naked Pizza’s tweets have prompted more than 8,000 people in the past year and a half to inquire about investing in the company or opening a franchise. About a quarter of those folks have invested in the company, according to co-owner Robbie Vitrano. That’s helped the franchiser open 20 stores across the country and the world, with another 450 soon to come.

“Gettin’ our global on this yr: stores to open sydney, mumbai, beirut & some other places we can barely spell. #nakedrevolution” was one of its tweets this summer. And shortly thereafter, “first person to name their newborn superbiotic – free pizza for life!” (that refers to the fact that its pies are made from a crust of 10 grains, prebiotic agave fiber, & probiotics).

The idea to use Twitter came from one of their early investors, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. Frustrated at the difficulties involved in re-establishing the business after Hurricane Katrina and by not finding much interest from potential franchisees, the owners followed his advice.

As they say, the rest is history. Customers found the offbeat tweets tasty enough to get them to try the pizza and pack the take-out place. Investors found their way in soon afterward as Naked Pizza’s tweets such as “one more glass of wine and I will b buying pop tarts from that damn vending machine for dinner, again” were retweeted frequently.

Do humorous posts on Twitter work, or do the jokes risk falling flat or turning away potential customers? While this strategy might not work for everyone, Naked Pizza has used a bit of social media ‘attitude’ to gain plenty of attention.

Let us know your thoughts – could this work for your brand?