‘Domino’s Forever’ campaign backfires spectacularly in Russia
A new media marketing campaign has backfired tremendously for a Domino’s Pizza franchisee in Moscow, Russia.
The franchisee offered dedicated fans 100 free pizzas, every year, for 100 years, if they got a permanent tattoo of the Domino’s logo in a ‘visible spot’ on their body.
The initiative was launched as part of the ‘Domino’s Forever’ promotion through VKontkte, the Russian equivalent of Facebook on August 31.
After an overwhelming response that saw 381 qualified applications within the first four days however, the company was forced to withdraw the promotion or risk serious financial burden.
Speaking with The Wall Street Journal, 24-year-old Natalia Koshkina, who permanently inked the Domino’s logo above her left kneecap, suggested the brand had fiercely underestimated how much Russians back a bargain.
By her estimates, “more than a million people would have come to demand pizzas,” had the promotion run its proposed full two-month period. “After all, this is Russia,” she said.
Hundreds took to social media to share their Domino’s decals, ranging from simple logo stamps to intricate designs that showcased the creativity of Russian freebie-fans.
This isn’t the first time a U.S. fast-food franchise has suffered the consequences of poor promotion in Russia.
Earlier this year, Burger King came under fire for an online advertisement that offered free burgers to Russian women impregnated by soccer players during the World Cup, suggesting the country could benefit from some good “football genes”.
Following media backlash in Russia and overseas, Burger King removed the ad, issuing a public apology.