Last month I decided to purchase one of Papa John’s heart-shaped pizzas to surprise my hubby for Valentine’s Day. Papa John’s was promoting the pizza like crazy, and they estimated that they would sell 75,000 heart-shaped pizzas for Valentine’s Day 2012. In order to ensure that I would receive the hyped-up heart-shaped pizza, I placed my order online the day before.
The pictures of the heart-shaped pizza on Papa John’s website looked fantastic! I was genuinely looking forward to devouring the masterpiece with my Valentine. I even expressed my excitement for the pizza with a few friends and family members.
The pizza arrived promptly at 8:30 p.m., as requested. Despite the fact that my Valentine was still not home from work, I couldn’t wait a minute longer. This is what I had been looking forward to all day! I had to sneak a peek.
As soon as I opened the box, my face fell in disappointment. I immediately took a picture of the pizza and posted it on Facebook with the caption “Here’s my ‘heart-shaped’ pizza. Looked better on the website. Lame.”
Not only was the pizza less than heart-shaped, but it was cold as well. I suspect that due to the large volume of orders, they filled each delivery drivers’ car with as many pizzas as they could, and I was one of the last stops on the schedule.
Now, I know that food never looks as tasty as it does in the commercials and advertisements. Food photographers have a few dirty tricks up their sleeve to make the product look much more appetizing. Food photographers have been guilty of using motor oil for various syrups, white glue for milk, and brown shoe polish to make meats look more succulent.
While I don’t always expect my food to look as pretty as the advertisements, I do expect it to at least resemble the picture painted, especially if the company is advertising a specific attribute about the food (as was the case for Papa John’s and their heart-shaped pizza).
I have not yet decided whether I will purchase another regular pizza from Papa John’s, but I definitely won’t be purchasing another heart-shaped pizza from them again.
The moral of the story
If you’re busy branding, keep your promises and make sure your product is in line with your content marketing material. The saying “It takes years to win a customer and only a few seconds to lose one,” is so true. It is much more expensive to win over new customers than to keep your existing ones happy. Think your content marketing strategy may be flawed or lacking? Read this blog post outlining content marketing essentials.
Have you ever been stoked about a product based on the advertisements, only to be disappointed? Tell us about your experience in the comments.