In 1992 Pizza Hut blitzed Australian television with the now iconic ad featuring patients lying in hospital unable to move as their limbs were set in plaster. But don’t fear – even if you can’t travel to a Pizza Hut restaurant you can still enjoy the classic Hawaiian by ordering home delivery. The advertisement firmly focused on the phone number that was sung to the melody of Rossini’s William Tell Overture. The catchy tune and the repetition of the phone number meant that the phone number was ingrained into the Australian psyche.
Pizza Hut’s branding was closely aligned to the phone number that hammered home the call to action – Pizza Hut home delivers and this is the number you need. There’s absolutely no subtlety about it.
However if you talk to people in different states – they will all recall a different phone number associated with Pizza Hut. In New South Wales the phone number was 481 11 11. Victorians will remember 13 11 66 and Queenslanders knew it as 892 11 11.
Presumably the most efficient way in the early 1990s to route phone numbers to specific locations was to publicise different numbers. But it’s important to note that even with a massive advertising campaign focused on an associated a phone number – that multiple numbers were used in the nationwide advertisements.
Today Pizza Hut has one national number – 1300 PIZZA HUT or 1300 749 924. With sophisticated call routing that can identify the location of a caller, software can automatically send callers direct to the nearest call centre or an IVR prompt can also route callers to the most appropriate operator.
But how does this all relate to call tracking?
The most effective method of tracking calls from a marketing campaign is by giving each campaign and campaign type a unique call tracking number. As noted by the Pizza Hut 1992 marketing campaign, even if the entire brand is built around a phone number, that very same company was using different phone numbers in different regions.
Using multiple numbers for your brand is nothing new – it’s just the purpose to which the numbers are used that is different.
In today’s fragmented world where consumers receive marketing messages on many platforms they don’t necessarily care which phone number they are presented with at the point at which they want to use it. They just want the number. Consumers know that a toll free number is a customer facing set of digits that divert to an established landline or DID. In essence they will use whatever numerals they’re given to contact the company.
While placing different toll free numbers on different campaign types or using dynamic numbers on a website that are associated to individual web sessions does mean that your brand doesn’t have a brand aligned phone number, in today’s commercial environment it actually doesn’t affect your ability to establish a brand or drive customers to call you.