Taking pictures of ourselves is indisputably now an integral part of American culture. Even on a particularly average day, you can still feel compelled to snap a picture of your “duck face” in a bathroom mirror or of your #ootd, meaning “outfit of the day.” The invention of the selfie stick has only increased this obsession. But with selfie sticks growing longer and longer, Pizza Hut finally decided to speak out.
Their latest advertisement takes the form of a PSA, attempting to garner attention from those “ego-tastic specimens of visual self-obsession” who are in danger because of the selfie stick. The ad sarcastically points out that the selfie stick shifts the focus of the picture from the person to the entire scene. As the anti-selfie-stick spokeswoman points out, this can only lead to disaster.
The ad continues with crowds of people and selfie sticks, unable to live their regular lives because of the attachment at the end of their arm. The commercial ends with a plea to help those individuals whose lives are forever changed because of the selfie stick.
So how is this a commercial and what product is being promoted, one may ask? It’s very subtle, but Pizza Hut is the company behind the advertisement. In one scene depicting the catastrophe, a Pizza Hut delivery man speaks out about how the selfie stick has negatively affected his job. As the length of the selfie stick has grown, so has the demand for bigger pizzas. His life is more difficult now because he has to deliver pizzas that are two feet long.
The subtlety of this commercial is what makes it shareable. Technically, Pizza Hut is still promoting their two-foot-long Big Flavor Dipper pizza, but they go about it in a way that is creative and entertaining. Part of the reason the commercial is so likeable is because it was created to be more of a viral video rather than a promotional video. The goal was to start a conversation, not push a product message in consumers’ faces. We’ll see if the commercial is effective in improving Pizza Hut’s business and “the greater good.”