Pizza Hut Looks for Twintern/Miracle Worker--So Should Others.

Whether it's coincidence that they advertised for this position after Domino's recent troubles or not, Pizza Hut is now looking for a Twintern. (Awwww. Cute.) Interested? Details here. It's the same thing when an agency posts an ad for a junior and the job "requirements" include everything under the sun--for minimum wage. Here's what they expect:

* Collect and share insights and experiences while working for Pizza Hut through social and interactive media: Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, New and emerging media
* Twintern will be given unprecedented access to marketing meetings, brainstorm sessions, ad shoots and special events
* Monitor social media for pop culture news, off-the-wall stories or anything else quirky and fun that he or she thinks would be of interest to loyal Pizza Hut fans.
* Chronicle experience through video; edit and post to selected media
* Conduct media outreach for PR programs
* Assist with execution of national PR programs

And they're only there for three months.

First off, all the stuff that follows applies to a lot of brands because Pizza Hut isn't the only one needing help, but at least they're trying. Two things to think about:

1) Anyone on any social net for even a little time knows you don't just throw up a few usernames here and there and call it a day. I'm not saying it takes someone with 15 years experience, but the thing a lot of brands miss is that each online space should work together in some way. Putting what amounts to a receptionist to field calls at each place misses out on doing something cooler.

Taking a basic of snapshot of where they're at right now, they just joined Twitter a little late. Their YouTube channel in 2+ years only has 32 subscribers and 1,250 channel views. (A brand with major TV support behind it able to drive traffic anywhere? Wasted effort.) Their MySpace is what it is. Their Facebook though has a decent following at around 942,167, (roughly 3x Domino's). Flickr? They don't have one, yet there are 24,000+ images tagged with Pizza Hut. What's missing from this picture? Integration. Or lack thereof.

Then there's blogs. It's not that there aren't enough metrics around to monitor it all, but deciphering what's being said is more than just counting how many times "Pizza Hut" is mentioned somewhere. You'll hear if you haven't already the term SWAT with regard to how some agencies and brands now approach how they monitor themselves or mentions of their clients. I think there should be that type of awareness, but it is a lot to ask of an intern? (Again, so much of what is out there needs to be interpreted, not simply tallied.)

2) Why isn't this something already being done by their ad agency? I don't know if they made a case for themselves or not, but that the brand had to go public and not even grab someone from either their AOR or PR shop says a lot about the gaps that agencies and brands have in the online space.

Applying an intern mindset to a larger set of challenges may be underestimating things.

by Bill Green    Apr-23-09   Click to Comment   

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Hey Bill. Definitely agree. This is a FAIL in my opinion for two reasons:

1 - it turns your interns into your company spokespeople which could have disasterous consequences.
2 - Social media is not a campaign, they're tools used to execute an engagement strategy. What happens when all the interns go back to school?

I went into some more detail here:

Posted by: Jack on April 24, 2009 9:16 PM

It's not there aren't enough metrics around to monitor it all

Posted by: marc jacobs on April 26, 2009 7:26 AM

I don't know how successful this venture will be, regardless of how well Pizza Hut coordinates their social-networking efforts. Twitter and facebook may be sites that nearly everyone is aware of, but I don't feel that anyone is utilizing those Web sites to decide what type of pizza they want, or to search for deals. If anything, they are searching Pizza Hut on facebook simply to express their love for the pizza, not to further their use of the product. Regardless of how well they organize this effort, I don't see it doing much to benefit the company in the long run.

Posted by: fcfarley on April 28, 2009 11:18 AM

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