NPR : News

The Hills Were Alive With The Sound Of DiGiorno Pizza Last Night

When big food corporations try to horn in on Twitter conversations about TV shows and other pop culture fare, it usually doesn't work.

Remember when McDonald's tried to engage customers with the hashtag #mcdstories, only to have it turn into a way to share horror-story experiences at the fast food chain? Or when Snickers got busted for paying celebrities to tweet about its brand?

Except sometimes, big food actually pulls it off. Take last night's Sound of Music Live broadcast on NBC. From a social media perspective, one of the highlights of the performance was the tweets coming from frozen supermarket pizza giant @DiGiornoPizza.

Bad puns, silly lyric changes and just plain clever comments earned the company more than 2,000 new followers last night, says the marketer behind the tweets, who wishes to remain anonymous.

Why choose a musical about a country and an era in which pizza very likely was unheard of?

"Just trying to make the most out of what everyone was already talking about," the @DiGiornoPizza tweeter tells us in — what else — a direct message on Twitter.

And many of our anonymous tweeter's observations suggested familiarity with the songs and made a whole lot of people hungry, or at least interested in retweeting the comments. (Anonymous says it's a favorite musical.) To wit:

I don't think those mountains are real you guys #TheSoundOfMusicLive

and

Still not over pizza getting overlooked in the favorite things song. #TheSoundOfMusicLive

and

BOOOOOOO ROLFE THE DELIVERY GUY BOOOOOO #TheSoundOfMusicLive

show that the tweeter was actually watching the show as it unfolded.

And lyric perversions like:

DOUGH a crust an unbaked crust RAY, a guy that likes pizza ME a pizza liked by a guy named ray FAH no idea what fah is SO so LA a city T tee

and

YOU ARE 16, GOING ON 17 AND I'M ASSUMING YOU'D LIKE PIZZA FOR YOUR BIRTHDAY DINNERRRRRRR #BuyDiGiorno #TheSoundOfMusicLive

and

CLIMB EVERY MOUNTAIN, FORD EVERY STREAM, FOLLOW EVERY RAINBOW, UNTIL YOU FIND A SUPREME (PIZZA FROM DIGIORNOOOOOO) #TheSoundOfMusicLive

"I will say that this was unplanned. The Sound of Music was on, the brand trusts me and I ran w/ it," the marketer says.

Of course, as the bump in Twitter followers shows, it's not just fun and games for DiGiorno or other big food manufacturers increasingly turning to social media to prove that their brand has got a personality.

As Stephanie Moritz, head of PR and social media at ConAgra Foods, told Food Navigator-USA in an interview last October, "Social listening is a critical factor in doing business in the 21st century."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Once Outlaws, Young Lords Find A Museum Home For Radical Roots

Inspired by the Black Panthers, the Young Lords were formed in New York City by a group of Puerto Rican youth in 1969. Their history is now on display in a new exhibition.
NPR

Europe's Taste For Caviar Is Putting Pressure On A Great Lakes Fish

Scientists say lake herring, a key fish in Lake Superior's food web, is suffering because of mild winters and Europe's appetite for roe. Some say the species may be at risk of "collapse."
WAMU 88.5

A Congressional Attempt To Speed The Development Of Lifesaving Treatments

Earlier this month, the House of Representatives passed the 21st Century Cures Act in a rare bi-partisan effort. The bill is meant to speed the development of lifesaving treatments, but critics warn it may also allow ineffective or even harmful drugs onto the market.

NPR

Some Google Street View Cars Now Track Pollution Levels

Google's already tested three of the pollution-sensor equipped cars in Denver, and is currently trying them out in the Bay Area.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.