A secure gift card program equates to a different kind of dough for LaRosa's Pizzeria.
Buddy LaRosa has always loved his Aunt Dena's pizza. So, using her recipe, he made a couple dozen to sell at his church's summer festival. It was an immediate hit, which gave Buddy an idea. The year was 1954, Buddy LaRosa, along with a couple of partners, and $400 started up a small pizzeria to serve his neighborhood.
Fast forward 60 years, LaRosa's is a landmark pizzeria serving hundreds of neighborhoods in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, Ohio's Miami Valley, and Southeast Indiana. Today LaRosa family members and franchise owners operate more than 60 pizzerias. They're so popular that consumer-reported purchase frequency regularly exceeds that of the biggest pizza players combined. Three generations of the LaRosa family now run the business and remain actively involved in the community. LaRosa's is the exclusive pizza provider to the home of the Cincinnati Reds, and the Cincinnati Zoo.
In addition to pizza, LaRosa's sells pasta sauce and other menu items at many regional grocery stores. With so many great retailing opportunities at hand, the LaRosa's marketing group felt that switching to a secure gift card program was a much better opportunity than their existing gift certificate program. So the switch was made and LaRosa's never looked back.
LaRosa's started their gift card journey more than eight years ago. Today is consists of a wide variety of programs. In partnership with a gift card mall network, LaRosa's has offered their gift cards through area grocers, an effort that's expanded to include online availability through both LaRosa's web site and others as well. Even during the height of the recession in 2009-2010, Buddy and his franchise owners had managed to more than quadruple gift card sales over their previous paper-based gift certificate program. Talk about slicing up success.
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