Pizza Hut creates digitally delicious campaign in China


“Buy drinks, get a free pizza” – Pizza Hut switches things up from the deals we are used to seeing.  However, the success of this campaign doesn’t come from the free pizza alone.  Pizza Hut promotes their campaign through not just one or two forms of media but four!  The audience and appetite just got larger for Pizza Hut fans, follow the stages of their campaign below to find out how:

Stage 1: Funny Video Advertisements

Pizza Hut releases video advertisements to promote their campaign that show situations where people react in a funny way when they find out if you buy drinks, you get a free pizza from Pizza Hut.


Video Advertisements from Pizza Hut

In the first video, the boy is refusing to eat broccoli and his mouth falls open when he hears about the free pizza deal so the mom has the chance to feed him.

The second one shows a princess who is asleep waiting for her prince’s kiss to wake her up, but when she hears about Pizza Hut’s deal, she wakes up and runs away without him to go get her free pizza.

Stage 2:HTML5 Free Pizza Challenge


HTML5 Free Pizza Challenge

This HTML5 game literally just asks if you think you can win a pizza.  If you want to win the pizza, you have to share the link with your friends on WeChat, and once you get three people to join you, you can get the chance to win.  Then the game tells you if you won the pizza or not.  Super simple and not much of a game, but who doesn’t want the chance to win a free pizza?

Stage 3:GIFS – Free Pizza Makes Dreams Come True

Pizza Hut creates funny GIFs that show dreams or desires that people have and then how free pizza can be a faster and easier answer to them.


Don’t worry about exercising because you can’t be healthy or lose weight until you’re full of ‘nourishment’ from a free pizza.

Why wait for the man of your dreams to fall from the sky? Free pizza will fall into your life a lot faster.

Stage 4:GIFs-Fuel Up for the Gao Kao with Free Pizza

‘Gao Kao’ is literally translated as ‘big test’, and it’s the national college entrance exam that all Chinese high school students have to take, think SATs or ACTs but bigger and probably more important.  The Gao Kao falls on June 7th every year, and Pizza Hut launched Gao Kao inspired GIFs to promote their buy a drink, get a free pizza campaign.

The Chinese name of Pizza Hut means ‘victory’, and Pizza Hut sent high school students good luck through their pizzas.

These GIFs relate the types of pizzas to good luck sayings.  For example, one has a sausage pizza and wishes the best of health and endurance during the test because the meat will give them protein and power.  Another is a chicken type of pizza and wishes they will be able to ‘fly’ through the test with ease.

Wishes the best of health and endurance during your Gao Kao

Wishes you are able to ‘fly’ through Gao Kao with ease

Pizza Hut shook things up a bit with the ‘buy drinks, get a free pizza’ campaign.  You might be wondering whether Pizza Hut is making more money because more sales from this campaign or if are they losing money because they give away so many free pizzas?  Regardless, it’s an engaging way for Pizza Hut to gain more exposure in the Chinese market because it uses all the different channels of Chinese social media to get attention for their brand.  And also who can resist a free pizza?

About Author

Cherry Han

Cherry Han is a Consumer Research Specialist at Resonance. Graduating from Newcastle University, with a Masters degree in Media and Public Relations, she has more recently set her sights to deciphering the behavior of Chinese netizens – particularly her fellow post-90s.

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