Domino's in Russia forced to end their 'free pizza for life' deal after it backfired hilariously
In today's modern, late-stage capitalism world, companies have to go the extra mile in order to appeal to their target demographic. No longer is it okay to say things like "our product is really good and you should buy it"; in general, the more celebrity endorsements, quirky hashtags or general insanity you can include in your marketing, the better.
KFC are the masters of this; they've already sent a chicken sandwich into space and written a romance novella for Mother's Day, and now they've offered one lucky set of parents $11,000 to name their child after their mascot. But that kind of mad marketing doesn't always go the way you've planned.
When Domino's announced their latest attempt at new-age marketing, they probably didn't expect for the marketing campaign to work as well as it did. They didn't really account for how far people were willing to go for free pizza. They really should have known better.
Okay, so at some point in a Russian Domino's marketing meeting, someone piped up with the idea of giving people free pizza for life. It's the kind of promise that's sure to put bums in seats and downloading Domino's apps, but you have to make sure that it's difficult enough that not everybody can get free pizza. That would be horrible for business.
So Domino's thought by promising customers 100 free pizzas every year for 100 years if they got a tattoo of the Domino's logo on a "prominent place", they'd profit off the general cowardice of the public and their fear of needles. This did not go to plan.
Initially, Domino's had intended to run the promotion for two months (between August 31 and October 31), but tons of people went out and got Domino's tattoos. Some on their forearms, others on their shins or wrists. That prominent red and blue logo woven into slices of pizza, hearts, and one time, a skateboard.
As such, Domino's were forced to end their promotion after just five days, announcing that just the first 350 people will benefit from the promotion, with everyone else forced to endure the pain of getting a tattoo for nothing. This is from the official Domino's VKontakte page:
"An urgent message to all those sitting at the tattoo artist’s right now: We’ll include you in the list of participants, but we’re waiting for photos up to midday today. To those with appointments scheduled for later, we recommend canceling them."
After a promotional 2018 to forget, maybe food brands out in Russia should probably cool it with the free food promotions. At this year's World Cup hosted in Russia, Burger King promised free Whoppers for life to anyone who got pregnant by a footballer competing in the competition, which led to a whole load of customer backlash, forcing them to shelve the promotion.
That being said, it is a possibility that there's a pregnant woman out there in Russia with a fresh Domino's tattoo on her arm, carrying in her womb the son or daughter of Russia's Denis Cheryshev, France's Antoine Griezmann or Belgium's Kevin de Bruyne.
That family is going to eat very well.