The latest news in the world of customer experience and customer loyalty.
NFL Switches Brands in Official Pizza Partnership
Well, that didn’t take long. After getting in a spat with the National Football League in which it claimed that players kneeling during the National Anthem was hurting its earnings, Papa John’s Pizza announced Monday that it was breaking up with the NFL after seven years and would no longer be the league’s “official pizza.” To which the NFL said, “Whatever” and introduced Pizza Hut as its new pizza partner yesterday, according to an article in The Wall Street Journal. Pizza Hut has over 7,200 restaurants in the U.S., while Papa John’s has more than 3,400 restaurants. Papa John’s said the decision was based on sagging TV viewership (down 15 percent since 2015), ROI on its advertising dollars and a need to rethink its strategies with the growing shift toward digital channels. It will still be heavily invested in advertising during NFL games, just not on an official level. Interestingly, the NFL (read: Commissioner Roger Goodell) has also been feuding with Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones of late, and is reportedly set to fine Jones $2 million for his relentless criticisms. Jones, it should be noted, owns more than 100 Papa John’s franchises. Hmmm.
Emails and Customer Data Stored Overseas Highlight Supreme Court Microsoft Case
A Supreme Court case that started Tuesday could have far-reaching ramifications regarding how digital communication are accessed by law enforcement, according to an article in Wired. Five years ago, the article says, U.S. law enforcement officials served Microsoft a search warrant for emails as part of a U.S. drug trafficking investigation. Microsoft handed over data stored on American servers, but didn’t give the government the actual content of the individual’s emails because they were stored at a Microsoft data center in Dublin, Ireland, where the subject said he lived when he signed up for his Outlook account. The Supreme Court will decide whether those borders matter when it involves data.
How Healthy Is the Current State of Retail in the U.S.?
What is the current state of retail in the U.S.? Well, according to an article in Chain Store Age, retail is very healthy. Six in 10 merchants deem the state of retail as very healthy (ranking seven points or higher on a 10-point scale), according to a survey by Vyze, while three in four merchants view the state of their business the same. The article also says that merchants with loyalty programs rate their business health even higher than average (81 percent). Last July we released the Loyalty360 2017 State of the Industry Report.

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