This was based on an assignment for school, but if it were picked up by any food vendor in the U.S. during Covid-19 second year it could be phenomenal. Here it is:
Little Caesars Pizza Co. ‘newsjacked’ the Covid-19 virus pandemic because they created a campaign called “Pie it Forward”. They donated 1 million pizzas to Detroit, Michigan for their healthcare workers in 2020. Dan Scrivano, C.E.O. stated, "As a family company, we want to thank all of them in the best way we know how - by delivering a wholesome meal." (Staff, 2020)
They chose the right story. It was April 2020, and we were in lockdown from the Covid-19 pandemic. Healthcare workers were working overtime to take care of people. Little Caesar’s Pizza Co. was purpose led and “generosity that stems from purpose is inherently genuine.” (Valle, 2017) That fact created an authentic caring attitude toward the public that resonated. It provided great publicity and goodwill toward the brand. In our culture people do buy from brands that are generous and that they perceive as authentic. Generous brands are rewarded financially with sales, they make money.
As the P.R. manager of my firm, I am going to bank on Little Caesar’s generosity this year to raise money to feed people during the pandemic’s second year. There is a story in the media about a young girl who raised $53,000 dollars by providing these online lemonade coupons for her lemonade stand. She was trying to raise $90 for a local food bank. She issued these coupons, hand painted to people for a donation. Morgan Marsh McGlone is a second grader in Wisconsin. Her efforts were noticed by the inauguration committee for President Joe Biden. She participated in the inauguration event handing off to Tom Hanks. (Oliver, 2021).
Little Caesar’s Pizza will issue coupons for pizzas. The money donations will be raised for a nationwide campaign. The money will go for Pizza’s in every major city across the country to help feed people. I took a page also from Coca Cola when they came into Rio De Janeiro, Brazil neighborhoods with a big red truck. “The Coke truck roamed the streets and enticed onlookers to push the “red button” and get a special gift.” (Lum, 2010) When you pressed the button, it would give you a coke. Within minutes it was surrounded by throngs of happy people. Why not Pizza trucks once a week in urban areas that fed people who come up and ask for a pizza.
The campaign will be organized providing coupons or codes accessible through phones, and online for people to donate. There will be a price point of $5.00 for one pizza, and an encouragement to buy more than one at a time. Before going public, the online donation portals need to be set up. A relationship with the media including free time on the radio, local T.V. programs, news stations and in newspapers set in place. The most powerful start will begin with the first Tweet. “The real-time web has opened a tremendous opportunity for anyone to get their brand discussed as part of the news of the day.” (Scott, 2015) The more it circulates the web, all the other media will want to participate.
Social media platforms of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and even Tumblr will be utilized with content. You Tube is a great platform to feature this campaign on. Influencers on social media platforms will be encouraged to donate space for advertising. For this they will be rewarded pizza. However much of this needs to be done for pizza or as a charity donation. An “we are all in this together” event with bloggers and podcasters doing a story on it. There will be a drive to get celebrities to encourage people to purchase the coupons. This will be a nationwide campaign.
Each week vans will go through the cities handing out pizzas to families and the homeless, feeding the people. They will stop at a specific location each week in each neighborhood and provide pizza. It might be a great time to co-produce this with Coca Cola, so drinks are provided too. Maybe a local celeb could work it like they would do for a charity event.
The event would require parameters, a beginning and ending date so there is a specific time frame it goes on. Maybe it would require an amount like the one million pizzas in Detroit, that could be decided later. It would provide great community service, while presenting the generosity of the brand. This would create more revenue for the company over all with increased sales and raise the brand reputation. I picked Little Caesars for this because they have done something similar, and because they are a nationwide chain. They already have the reputation for being generous, which the public sees as authentic and caring.
Staff, (2020), Pie it forward: Little Caesar’s kicking off nationwide donation of 1 million pizzas in Detroit, WXYZ.com, https://www.wxyz.com/news/coronavirus/helping-each-other/pie-it-forward-little-caesars-kicking-off-nationwide-donation-of-1-million-pizzas-in-detroit
Lum, Ryan, (2010), Follow Coca Cola’s amazing Unconventional marketing effort, Guerilla-marketing, http://www.creativeguerrillamarketing.com/guerrilla-marketing/cocacola-returns-outdoor-theatre-marketing-effort/
Valle, Paige Lansing, (2017), What is brand generosity anyway? Emotivebrand.com, https://www.emotivebrand.com/brand-generosity/
Oliver, Meg, (2021), Girls virtual lemonade stand catches eye of Biden’s inaugural team, CBSnews.com, https://www.cbsnews.com/news/morgan-marsh-mcglone-virtual-lemonade-stand-wisconsin-catches-eye-of-joe-biden-inaugural-team/