Facebook-friendly Papa John's International Inc. is asking its loyal customers to share their ideas for the next great specialty pizza as part of the company's first ever "Papa's Specialty Pizza Challenge."
Whatever the name and combination of superior-quality ingredients, Papa John's is offering the contest winner a "slice" of the sales in return for the top recipe, which will be featured in the future as a Papa John's offering alongside other Specialty pies like The Works, Tuscan Six Cheese, Garden Fresh, The Meats, BBQ Chicken and Bacon, Hawaiian BBQ Chicken, Spinach Alfredo and Spicy Italian.
The contest started April 26 and runs through June 14. Participants can enter "Papa's Specialty Pizza Challenge" through Facebook at www.facebook.com/papajohns. Consumers will be asked to create and name their very own specialty pie on Papa John's 14-inch, never frozen original hand-tossed or thin crust with sauce, cheese and a combination of up to seven Papa John's ingredients.
The promotion already is driving Facebook interactions and traffic for the brand: The recent announcement has generated 250 Facebook pages worth of specialty pizza recipe entries and descriptions.
Interestingly, better-for-you concoctions seem to almost dominate. One lady submitted a recipe for a "Vegan Hawaiian Barbecue."
"With extra barbecue sauce and double pineapple, this specialty pizza becomes a Hawaiian luau in your mouth. No cheese and no meats makes this a delicious, healthy vegan alternative for your family," the entry read. Participants must also share in 250 words or less what makes their pizza special for a chance to win.
All entries will be featured in a gallery on Papa John's Facebook page, from which "Papa" John Schnatter himself and his team of experts will choose ten semi-finalists.
Those 10 recipes will then be tested and tasted by Schnatter and other judges at company headquarters in Louisville, Ky. Schnatter will trim the choices to his three favorite recipes, which will be showcased temporarily on Papa John's menu in August, with the ultimate winner being the highest-selling pizza.
And because the stakes – a portion of sales dollars from the winner's recipe – are so high and to assist with the sales of each pizza, Papa John's is offering the top three finalists a marketing budget of $1,000 to help drive sales of their respective pizzas.
The grand prize winner will also receive free Papa John's pizza for life as well as a chance to appear in a "Papa's in the House" TV commercial.