Tag Archives: commercial

Children’s Pizza Marketing

“Where a kid can be a kid”

I have never been to Chuck E. Cheese’s, and yet hearing this slogan evokes deep-rooted memories of a time in my life when I thought the colorful, fun-filled restaurant epitomized what it meant to be <10 years old. I pleaded with my parents countless times to go. Alas, they never even entertained the idea. And so, my childhood is marked by the scar of never truly experiencing the only place on earth “Where a kid can be a kid”.

Throughout the last few months, I have been analyzing pizza restaurants’ marketing, advertising, and communication strategies. The companies I have observed (Domino’s, Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, Little Caesar’s, Godfathers, and Goodman’s American Pie) are all lacking in one area: marketing aimed at children. According to Pizza Marketing Quarterly, there are five key elements for a successful kids marketing program for pizzerias. This is what stood out to me the most.

  • From supplying a coloring page menu, to offering a “kids cut” on children’s slices, to providing a kids meal option (a slice, a dessert, and a drink) are big hits for parents who are trying to avoid a fuss-free meal.
  • A separate kids’ space can be utilized for children to make noise and run around while they are waiting to eat. Some restaurants go as far as giving kids a piece of pizza dough to play with upon arrival.
  • Sponsoring a local sports team by hosting events, dinners, and fundraisers will bring parents to your restaurant and can help develop loyalty to your business.
  • Alami notes that employees “should engage children of all ages by looking them in the eye, talking to them and smiling, and know how to anticipate kids’ needs, such as extra napkins and plastic water cups with covers and straws for toddlers.”

And now I know why many restaurants choose not to market to kids. Besides being a less important demographic (kids don’t have purchasing power), children are a nightmare to serve and a nightmare to be around while your trying to eat dinner. It sounded to me like Morin was writing about ways to turn your restaurant into a sticky, loud, playground where parents can drop their kids off to be babysat while they enjoy a beer as far away as possible. What do you think? Am I just bitter about my adult-centered childhood or are you in agreement?

screaming children at restaurants

my kind of dining experience

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Filed under Media Literacy, NP

Every Pizza Ad Ever

Watch Telekinesis Studios “Every Pizza Ad Ever“, a parody of what I think may have been in jest of Papa John’s commercials.

Compare to:

and:

The last one was a little bit sexy, don’t you think? I think what makes Telekinesis Studio’s parody funny is that it is so accurate. Despite that fact that there is an evident formula to making a pizza commercial, Papa John’s commercials are very effective in stimulating behavior in the audience (to go out and buy Papa Johns Pizza!).

A few persuasive techniques being utilized in these ads taken from the ACME Coalition for Media Education:

Plain Folks: The opposite of testimonial; persuading by appealing to the common man or portraying yourself as “just one of the guys/gals.” CEO and Founder of Papa John’s portrayed as just an average Joe starting up a multi-millin dollar pizza chain. He reaches out to his customers by revealing a little about himself: his favorite pizza.

Beautiful People: Persuading through images of good-looking individuals to sell products, lifestyles, behaviors, or ideas. There’s no denying Papa is a handsome guy! And the make-up helps!

Hyperbole: Persuading by making exaggerated claims. Found all the time in advertising media. “Better Ingredients, Better Pizza, Papa Johns”. Better than what, really? And how do we know?!

Reptilian Brain: In the second Papa Johns commercial, the slow motion images of the food being prepared targets a part of the human brain known as the “Reptilian” brain. This brain reacts to stimulation in four ways: Eating, Mating, Fighting, or Flighting. The slow images of the food trigger the primal brain to want to eat.

Do you see any other persuasive techniques in these commercials that might make an audience want to order for delivery?! Let me know your thoughts below!

NP 4/09

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Filed under Media Literacy, NP

Pizza Hut Hut Hike

According to NRN Pizza Hut hit a single-day sales record on Superbowl Sunday this year with this commercial, compiled of  crowd sourced clips playing football. Using platforms like Facebook and Twitter, they asked fans to submit videos of themselves playing football and saying  “Hut Hut Hut” to appear in a spot during the Superbowl. They weren’t alone in soliciting user-generated content this football season. Companies like Pepsi, Doritos, and Lincoln also creatively crowdsourced for, what most would argue, the most important advertising day of the year in America.

What is it about crowdsourcing that is so effective? For those of you who are unfamiliar with the phenomena, here is a short video to get you up to speed.

Crowdsourcing in advertising embraces the idea that your customers are not only consumers, but producers as well. They are your target audience, but can also be used to perpetuate your brand identity among greater audiences. ” Such opportunities give consumers the illusion that they’re in the driver’s seat. But the real driver: Advertisers are trying to coax consumers into getting more involved with their brands” (USA Today).

This Pizza Hut commercial was very successful. Users submitted their footage online, voluntarily, with the desire to be in a national ad, maybe without realizing they would become a part of the Pizza Hut brand.

Crowdsourcing, in the case of this Pizza Hut Superbowl commercial, is utilizing “Plain Folks”, a technique that persuades people “by appealing to the common man” (ACME). Often times in advertising, companies spend a lot of time and money to make actors / scenes appear to be normal / typical and relatable to their target audience. The great thing about crowdsourcing for advertisements is that the people who submitted their own user generated videos are already in Pizza Hut’s target audience. Much less manipulation has to go into the production of the commercial this way, aside from choosing and compiling which videos they wish to use.

Crowdsourcing is a trend in advertising for a variety of industries. How long do you think it will be until it runs its course?

NP 3/26

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Filed under Campaigns, Media Literacy, NP

Pulling the Cheese : Domino’s Food Styling and Pizza Porn

You’re sitting at home watching TV when a pizza advertisement comes on. By the end of the commercial, you’re salivating in your mouth at the images you just saw on the screen. You pick up the phone, call Domino‘s and order a pie for delivery. You’re impatient, eagerly awaiting to take a bite of the slice you just saw on TV. 20 minutes later you pay the delivery driver and open the box, expecting to see this:

Pizza Porn

Pizza Porn

But what you really see is this:

“Food photography (or food porn as it’s deemed in this age of Food Network plate-ogling) can make you hungry with a mere glance.  But it’s not easy to get things looking so appetizing and alluring. It takes a ton of skill, timing, artistry, and even some house hold items you should never put in your mouth.” – Fox News

Ever wonder what the process of making a Domino’s commercial looks like? Take a look:

“Food stylists are amazing. They have to do many things to the food to make it look beautiful…They use many tools to make that pizza look the best.” – Hand Model, Domino’s Pizza

It takes “150 people to get down 30 seconds of camera time…if we’re lucky, we get one shot an hour.” – Sam Fauser, Domino’s Pizza Chef

I never thought that they would cut the pizza using a sawzall, or screw down the crust so the cheese will pull just right. It makes sense, I mean how many times have you pulled a slice out of the box and took the cheese off the whole pie?

Although Domino’s released this video to be more transparent, as part of their famous “Oh Yes We Did” campaign, they certainly are not the only company utilizing food styling. Almost every food commercial, photograph, and television show employ at least a little bit food styling to make the food look beautiful.

I haven’t decided yet where I stand about the ethics of “Food Porn”. It’s not unlike other commercials which use different means of persuasion (i.e. beautiful people, humor, values, flattery, straw man). To me, it’s just another important aspect of being media literate. Questioning food media production should be considered thoughtfully like any other kind of media. Some people argue that Food Porn does not practice good ethics, and can be misleading to consumers. What do you guys think? Should you be able to photograph your cake and eat it, too?

WP 3/22

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Filed under Ethics, Media Literacy, WP