Management Practices

What Pizza Can Teach You about Customer Service

July 11, 2018 | 6:09 AM

You may have seen the new Domino’s Pizza Carryout Insurance commercials. They state: “Free protection for your most delicious asset. Pizza accidents happen. That’s why we’re introducing free Carryout Insurance. If damage occurs to your carryout order after you leave the store, just bring it back and we’ll remake it for free.”

Not only is Carryout Insurance great marketing, but it helps Domino’s stores provide better customer service, stresses Jessica Bound, customer experience consultant with The DiJulius Group. “In the past it was left up to the individual store manager to decide when the product guarantee guideline applied to damaged product situations,” she explains. “Of course, if a drive dropped an order, but if a customer did it, then results could vary by store. The carryout insurance removed personal interpretation by always giving the benefit of the doubt to the customer, bringing consistency to all Dominos locations."

What’s covered under your carryout insurance? According to the Domino’s website:

  • "Rain. So much rain."
  • "It got cold while stuck in traffic."
  • "Stranger sneezed on it."
  • "My dog licked it."
  • "My kid sat on it."
  • "It was run over by a bicycle gang."
  • "I tripped on a sprinkler."

 Obviously Domino's doesn't care the reason, they will replace it. However, was it Domino's fault that you dropped your pizza? Absolutely not. Is it their problem? Yes, because how well will you enjoy your Domino's experience if your pizza is uneatable? The company is committed to providing a positive experience regardless of the circumstances.

Peyton Whitty, a field trainer for Domino's, shares his favorite Carryout Insurance story from a store in Mississippi:

"After receiving two calls from the same customer within an hour, the manager taking the order said, "Wow, you must be hungry!" The customer explained that her teenage son brought his friends over and they ran off with the pizza before she or her husband had the chance to enjoy it. To which the manager replied, "Disappearing under teenage circumstances is covered under our carryout insurance." The manager made her another pizza for free, and because this isn’t a regular occurrence, the manager recognized the opportunity to WOW her.”

“Being Zero Risk applies regardless of whether or not your company is at fault,” Bound stresses. World-class service companies create protocols to proactively handle their most common service defects. Even if a defect is not your fault, your customer will associate the issue with doing business with you.”

From time to time, there will be salon guests who leave unhappy because the cut or color they want can’t be achieved with their hair or because they don’t effectively communicate what they want. Is that your stylist’s fault? No, but it is your problem if the client never returns to your salon or if worse, she shares her perceived slight with the world through social media. Think about the long-term value of insuring your cuts and colors and guaranteeing customer satisfaction. Develop a protocol of contacting guests a day or so after a new service and ensuring they are happy with the result. Design your own insurance policy, share it with your staff then promote it through all your marketing channels.

CLICK! Looking for a great lesson for your next salon staff meeting? Customer service guru John DiJulius just released his first TEDx Talk on building a rapport with clients by gathering their FORD. Find out more about The DiJulius Group’s Customer Service Revolution, which will be held in Cleveland, Ohio, October 24-25, 2018 by visiting

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