Advertising can be done in a number of ways. There are billboards, magazine ads, commercials, fan pages and much, much more. Closely related to advertising is public relations. PR campaigns are done to uphold a favorable public image of a company through the eyes of the public. Pizza Hut has done all of these forms of advertisements and upholds this favorable public image, but this week Pizza Hut took their campaign a step further.
Pizza Hut has made a proposition which they call "The Pizza Party". If someone is to ask President Barack Obama or Republican candidate Mitt Romney, "Sausage or pepperoni?" at the live telecast this Tuesday, October 16, at Hofstra University, they will receive a free large pie each week for the next 30 years or a check for $15,600.
Now, there is not only the Presidential debate going on, but a debate on whether this is ethical or not.
Why do people watch the Presidential debate? Well, perhaps to retain information and opinions about whether or not the representatives should be the next President of the United States. By asking a question like "Sausage or pepperoni?" viewers can get hostile. These individuals are watching for a purpose, just as a CEO is running a business. There is no fooling around or wasting time.
Of course, due to government regulations and strict policies, the question will most likely not make it to air. Debate questions are pre-screened, but someone can still squeeze the question in. If you remember the 1994 MTV Town Hall, President Bill Clinton was asked by a member of the audience "Boxers or briefs?" Clinton responded with "Usually briefs," and this became a everlasting moment in pop culture.
There has to be some props toward Pizza Hut. They have thought outside the box and taken not a step, but a leap toward future marketing. Since many Americans will be watching this debate, it is a great time to advertise and Pizza Hut has seized the opportunity.
What Pizza Hut does not recognize through this schema, is that perhaps many individuals around America have not seen their proposal. People may remember the moment someone asked "Sausage or Pepperoni?" at a Presidential debate, but they may not link that moment directly to Pizza Hut.
Since the first debate in 1992, the rules and regulations governing the debate have become so strict that campaigns have their own restrictions on questions asked by audience members. This year's terms have not yet been made public. With all of these restrictions, it is safe to say that even if the question is asked, it will most likely be immediately rejected and passed.
Other franchises such as JetBlue, Ben & Jerry's and 7-Eleven show their political pride by forming their products around the Presidential campaign, but none have done it quite like Pizza Hut.