Just in time for Easter, the billboard that was put up in New Zealand read, “Made from real rabbit. Like this billboard,” and promises a new pizza with “smoked wild NZ rabbit, toasted pine nuts, beetroot & horopito relish, cream cheese, rosemary & garnished with fresh spring onions.”
But that is not all; what’s grossing people out more than anything is the fact that the billboards are covered completely with real rabbit hides.
Needless to say the advertisement has gotten a lot of negative feedback; most considers it to be deplorable and not celebrating but desecrating the event.
Here are some glimpses of the comments on their Hell Pizza’s Facebook page:
“A new low, definitely won't be supporting your business again. This billboard is not doing your business any favours- pure idiocy.”
“While we've been pleased to have Hell's vegetarian and vegan pizzas NZ Vegetarian Society Approved, impressed at their efforts to ensure avoidance of cross-contamination and can appreciate Hell's humour, this is deplorable on so many levels. While we "approve" Hell's veg pizzas, we do NOT approve of this.”
“This is disgusting. Absolutely vile.”
Hell Pizza’s response is simple- Rabbits are pests.
“As well as being a delicious meat, and even quite cute, rabbits are unfortunately also a noted pest that is damaging to the New Zealand environment, particularly in the South Island. For those who are concerned, we sourced these rabbit skins via a professional animal tanning company, who in turn sourced them from local meat processing companies where the skins are a regular by-product.”
It is interesting to see how such a stunt can pull in so much interest and create a buzz in no time and this is exactly what the franchise is benefiting from.
Hell’s Pizza is very smart when it comes to their marketing; they love making the most of provocative marketing.
Many companies, organizations and campaigners have been using these marketing strategies to promote their ideas and products.
In 2012, Self Chec, an NGO pushed out these provocative posters to create awareness for early detection of breast or testicular cancer in a campaign titled Love Yourself First.
Not long ago a bunch of Papier-Mache pandas started popping up in different cities around the world making people curious.
Created by French artist Paulo Grangeon the pandas were part of an exhibition set in motion to create awareness about the conservation of the animals going extinct; each papier-mâché sculpture represented a single panda that’s left in the wild.
Hell Pizza themselves have been using such stunts in the past as well. They once mailed out condoms as promotion for their “Lust” pizza.
So there’s no need to fly off the handle for a rabbit pizza. As one comment from one of their saner customers on Hell Pizza’s Facebook page says, “Hahahaha ohmylord. If people have a problem with rabbit meat then they shouldn't have beef or lamb or pork or bacon or venison... Stop using leather and sheeps skins etc..See where I'm going here!? Lol! Hells pizza you ALWAYS have the BEST marketing ideas.”
So, relax folks and enjoy Easter with a relaxed mind.