Pizza Patrón's “Pizza por Favor” Promotion Goes Awry
A whirlwind of controversy dominates a pizza campaign for the masses. In a lighthearted attempt to reach out to their Spanish speaking customers, Pizza Patrón developed a new promotion offering free pizzas; but the response was not expected.
The June 5th promotion gave a free pizza to anyone who ordered by saying, “Pizza por favor,” or “Yo quiero pizza.” Three words created a whirlwind of controversy for the pizza chain with some activists declaring the move as discrimination. Pizza Patrons’ email servers were hacked on the day the promotion was announced and a handful of locations received envelopes of white powder on the day of the event. Although it wasn’t anthrax, it created a scare for the pizza chain and their employees.
“It’s amazing how three words could create so much negative discussion,” said Brand Director Andy Gamm. “But we’re used to it.”
In 2007 Pizza Patrón was at the center of another controversy when they started accepting Mexican pesos as payment. The pizza company received huge amounts of backlash, including death threats at their offices for what was considered acceptance of immigration.
Plans for a new October promotion are in the works for Pizza Patrón, but further details are being shrouded in mystery. Let’s hope this promotion goes a little bit smoother.
“I can tell you this, it’s a twist,” Gamm said. “But if I told you more I’d have to kill you.”