Pizza Hut Franchisee Worried About The Company’s Digital Future

Pizza Hut NPC International

Pizza Hut franchisee NPC International Inc. is a little concerned about the company’s dedication to its digital platforms.

Although the restaurant was one of the first pizza joints to venture into the world of online sales, it would seem that its competitors have surpassed their efforts to ensnare the younger generation. In fact, Pizza Hut’s biggest franchisee believes the company really needs to step up their game.

Entrepreneur reports that NPC International is deeply concerned about Pizza Hut’s overall lack of innovation in the world of digital marketing. The franchisee believes this is the reason the company experienced a whopping 77 percent decline in sales when compared to last year’s figures.

During the first quarter of 2013, NPC banked approximately $17.7 million in sales. Unfortunately for the Pizza Hut franchisee, the company only brought home around $3 million during Q1 of 2014. Not surprisingly, NPC CEO Jim Schwartz is a little chapped about the situation. Instead of shouldering some of the blame, he points the finger directly at Pizza Hut’s inability to dominate the digital frontier.

“We must strengthen the brand’s connection with the Millennial generation and drive greater consistency among our value and service offerings,” he explained during a recent conference call.

Schwartz continued, “Digital drives greater loyalty, and it drives greater activation, and in many cases, consumers can find the best value in respect to the offerings embedded in digital. That’s not an area we have kept up with, and we know that. It’s an opportunity for us.”

According to Nation’s Restaurants News, Schwartz added that he doesn’t expect Pizza Hut to make significant changes within the span of a few days. However, NPC urged Yum! Brands to “contemporize the Pizza Hut brand for the consumers of today and tomorrow.”

Inquisitr previously reported that Pizza Hut is experiencing sagging sales in the US, though business is picking up in other parts of the globe. Yum! Brands CEO David Novak was reportedly very disappointed with the restaurant’s Stateside sales, but he seemed determined to turn the situation around.

Connecting with more people through social media is definitely a step in the right direction, though Novak also wants to offer Pizza Hut customers more bang for their buck. In addition to focusing on more value-oriented pies, the chain will begin promoting its new line of BBQ pizzas with some help from country star and The Voice mentor Blake Shelton.

Do you think Pizza Hut is lagging behind its competitors in terms of digital engagement? Could the company stand to increase its presence on social media?