By: Don Driggers
A local pizzaiolo is famous thanks to his creative use of social media, and people’s natural love of fresh pizza! Salvatore Mandreucci works at Marcelo’s Pizza Grill in Trenton New Jersey, owned by his dad. Mandreucci is 25 years old and the restaurant is almost as old as he is at 20 years old.
Marcelo Mandreucci, Salvatore’s father, is an immigrant from Sicily who enjoys making truly authentic Italian pizzas. He has been doing it for over 50 years.
On TikTok and Instagram, Mandreucci is better known as SallySlices, where his 4 million combined social followers have lead to get an agent and seek a film career. While he considers himself a pizza-maker first, Mandreucci is already expanding his footprint beyond Marcello’s, according to The New York Post. He’s selling merchandise branded with the SallySlices logo on his website and has an acoustic ballad on Spotify called “A Man’s Mind.” (It has about 60,000 plays.)
“[When I started TikTok] I said to my dad, ‘Look, I’ve got 6,000 followers.’ You know what he said to me? ‘This is bulls–t.’ But the next week I had 20,000, and I saw his demeanor change. And once I hit 50,000, he started to understand the value of social media,” said Mandreucci told The New York Post
“My dad’s been my biggest supporter. Every day we have people stopping in from different states,” Salvatore tells The New York Post, noting that his TikTok fame has been great for Marcello’s, located in a strip mall in Hamilton Square. “California, Texas, Florida. They’re doing something else in the area and stop by.” The restaurant gets 25 calls a day from fans looking to speak with him, forcing Mandreucci to avoid the phone altogether.
“Be a good person, but don’t waste your time to prove it,” reads one. He has hundreds of videos just like this — Italian cooking and existential bons mots. Mandreucci’s TikTok bio reads “CEO of Inspiration,” and over the past year, that role has transformed him into a superstar.
Tik Tok has evolved from a place where people would tell jokes and a place where young females would tease their male audience with titillating videos, to a creative marketing tool for thousands of businesses and home-grown hobby-based services.
For example, a New Jersey father, who builds remote controlled cars, as a hobby his entire life, gained thousands of followers, for simple videos of his long-time hobby.