[SMK] Social Media Knowledge


Social Media Fail: Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut dialled up a social fail with the lot after a promotion giving away animals with pizzas backfired.

Meat lovers

Earlier this week a Pizza Hut franchise in the Melbourne suburb of Mt Waverley was spotted offering customers a free small animal – with any purchase of ten large pizzas.

The animals were going to be supplied by local pet store Pets Story.

Pretty soon the deal started attracting all sorts of attention after animal welfare group Oscar’s Law became aware of the campaign and advised users to voice their concerns on Pizza Hut’s Facebook Page.

The RSPCA also issued a statement condemning the promotion.

Animal instinct

Sure enough, Pizza Hut’s Facebook Page was soon inundated with complaints from outraged users accusing the chain of everything from animal cruelty to moral bankruptcy. Here’s a selection:

“A free animal from the pet store with every 10 pizzas??? That has to be the most irresponsible promotion ever. Shame on all involved.”

“Worst promotion ever. Poor animals! DOMINO'S for good now.”

“What a DUMB, DUMB thing to do!!!!! How IRRESPONSIBLE!! Got everyone's attention, but in a BAD way…….”.

Crusty outcome

To its credit, Pizza Hut quickly responded and within two hours released a statement apologising for the promotion, explaining it was neither approved nor condoned by Pizza Hut Australia.

The statement also thanks Oscar’s Law for bringing the promotion to their attention and confirmed no animals exchanged hands at any time.

The promotion has now been withdrawn, but it’s too early to tell what lasting damage this will have to the Pizza Hut brand.

It may also give customers pause for thought when ordering their next Meatlovers pizza.

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