Pizza Hut 'Twintern' to Guide Twitter Presence

Pizza Hut Marketers struggling with the social media zeitgeist might be intrigued by a new idea from Pizza Hut. The QSR has announced that it's searching to fill a newly created intern position specifically dedicated to being the company's "voice" on Twitter and helping to guide its presence on other social media.

The paid "twintern" job description from Pizza Hut states that the successful candidate will keep its Twitter followers posted on "great deals and menu items from Pizza Hut," as well as "keep a keen eye on pop culture news, off-the-wall stories or anything else quirky and fun that ... would be of interest to loyal Pizza Hut fans." The twintern will also monitor Twitter and alert the company to any negative buzz.

In addition, the twintern will bring perspective to other social media such as Facebook (Pizza Hut has nearly a million fans on its page, which includes an ordering widget), and other digital initiatives such as total mobile access and e-gift cards.



Aside from being Twitter-literate, applicants must be enrolled in college and willing to work in the chain's Dallas headquarters for the summer. The chosen one will also demonstrate creativity in the application. (Applications are being accepted on

"Forward-thinking brands are now on Twitter, whether it's a CEO tweeting on behalf of a company or a world-class athlete," summed up Pizza Hut chief people officer Amanda Fleming. "We are committed to making Pizza Hut a truly digital brand, where customers can connect with real team members from the company and participate in real, honest conversation. Twitter is another way for us to make that connection. It's important for us to be where our customers are, and right now that's social media platforms, such as Twitter."

"The social media interns of today will be the CMOs of tomorrow, as social media becomes a fulcrum for communications strategies," predicts Reggie Bradford, CEO of social media services provider Vitrue, adding that if he were "20 again," he'd take the job even without pay.

"Marketers are starting to realize that social media provides the opportunity to make the one-to-one connections that build trust and engagement," as well as "get ahead of the conversation" with a strategy that encourages key customer and employee advocates to "fight back" when virtual communications about a brand start to go sour, Bradford says.

The need for strategy, he adds, is one lesson to be learned from the recent fallout experienced by Domino's after the stomach-churning video posted by two employees on YouTube. And while social media can clearly create negative brand impacts, they are also "the way to rebuild customer trust and brand image," Bradford says.

3 comments about "Pizza Hut 'Twintern' to Guide Twitter Presence ".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. Patrick Scullin from Ames Scullin O'Haire, inc., April 22, 2009 at 10:17 a.m.

    Twitter's all the rage but can love survive in the Twitter Age? A funny take awaits @

  2. Howie Goldfarb from Blue Star Strategic Marketing, April 22, 2009 at 11:42 a.m.

    Why would anyone follow Pizza Hut on Twitter? Unless Pizza Hut is giving away FREE food there will be too much clutter to stand out. Pizza Hut already saturates people's lives with advertising. Mail circulars, TV commercials, print and out of home media. If a young adult follows Pizza Hut and 50 other companies what is Pizza Hut offerings. Most people have tried their pizza and either like it or not. So getting the name out has already been done.

    The only benefit for Pizza Hut is when they announce new products, offer a coupon to try it, and do it maybe once a month at most. Otherwise daily+ tweets would be considered spam by most Twitterers.

    I think working on a mobile menu/purchase app that makes ordering via the phone 1 2 3 should be their number 1 priority vs anything thing else they are planning.

  3. Bobbie Carlton from Carlton PR & Marketing, April 22, 2009 at 1:47 p.m.

    I'm still flabbergasted that large corporations like Pizza Hut seem willing to entrust their brand to college students. Twitter is a social network and maybe it seems that digital natives "understand" it. But do they understand the principals behind effective management of messages in a crisis, what constitutes a crisis, how to communicate effectively with an audience, etc. How would Pizza Hut's team react if I suggested they put their brand's relationship with the New York Times in the hands of a 20 year old? You could potentially reach more people on Twitter than actually subscribe to the New York Times.

    Dear Pizza Hut team -- There are great, creative, mature, experienced communicators and marketers available to you. We can help you understand how to use social media, and how to integrate it with your other marketing tactics. We have worked in PR or marketing communications longer than your potential interns have been alive, and we've learned a thing or two. Just because we have a few gray hairs doesn't mean we don't use social media.

Next story loading loading..