In the culinary world, it’s the dessert and pastry pioneers that get the glory. Angie Dudley’s Cake Pops, Bea Vo’s Duffin, Dominique Ansel’s Cronuts. And let’s just name drop a bunch of other handheld sweets for good measure; Croclair, Cruffin, Wonut, Townie, blah blah. While hybrid names are all sorts of fun it’s not often that product innovation perfectly matches an existing brand. We bring you The Pie Hole‘s…er…Pie Holes! It just makes sense.
The challenge was simple. How do you take something like pie, which is often seen as a special occasion and sit-down indulgence, and turn it into portable daily snack? The occasion of “driving” and sitting down in the driver’s seat while eating pie has been met with mixed results..and blueberry stains. The answer was right there in the name: Pie Holes.
It seemed obvious to us, but sometimes there’s a good reason that the obvious doesn’t work. So we dug in on the industry trends—yep, snacking is still on the rise, as are mini portions of dessert. We checked out the competition—it was a huge sacrifice, but someone had to taste-test the pie bites at Winston Pies and mini koigan amman at Republique. And we envisioned how pie holes would fit into The Pie Hole’s business and found that they had the potential to enhance their key growth initiatives of catering and coffee, in addition to being the perfect, low-cost giveaway for their local store marketing efforts.
After much R&D by the team at The Pie Hole (someday we’ll tell you about the Earl Grey disaster), pie holes were invented, just in time for pie season in November. We launched them on Election Day, which gave the bite-sized treats the perfect PR platform: a free pie hole to anyone with an “I Voted” sticker. From there, pie holes have made themselves a critical part of The Pie Hole’s success, with platters appearing at baby showers and seasonal toppings marking each holiday.
About three months later, pie holes are the hottest thing since sliced pie.
- 100,000 sold in three months
- Credited with double-digit sales increases over the holidays
- 6 live TV placements
- Consumer media coverage in NBC LA, LA Magazine, iHeartRadio, Foodbeast, KROQ, LAist, OC Register, Chowhound and many more
- Industry media coverage in Fast Casual, Nation’s Restaurant News, Restaurant Hospitality and QSR
- Millions of influencer impressions on Instagram