Pizza Hut partnered with a talented culinary director and crew last year to create the advertising work used for a plant-based meat topping pan pizza and the $10 Tastemaker® “Infomercial” commercials. The director, Margaret Elman, and her nearly all-female team are part of the Taste production company. You may have seen the memorable (and funny) ads – now meet the people who brought them to life.
Lindsay Morgan, chief marketing officer for Pizza Hut, U.S., who manages consumer-facing creative content says, “The production team was stellar, they went above and beyond to ensure we had the best work possible. The director, Margaret, added an elevated and thoughtful treatment to our photography, keeping everything on schedule and on budget, all while navigating the COVID-19 restrictions!”
Margaret Elman shared, “It was a completely great experience! Because I was shooting a variety of products for the library, I got to totally immerse myself in all things Pizza Hut … It was so refreshing to work with a client who was so collaborative and open to trying new things. And I was surrounded by a terrific team of food stylists and riggers who really knew the pizza. And I had my trusty camera team to rely on for beautiful light and composition.”
How it began
Pizza Hut’s partnership with Taste began during the bidding process for these campaigns. Pizza Hut and its agency, GSD&M committed to selecting at least one bid from a director/crew with a diverse background. “When we triple bid, we have diversity and inclusion in mind. You can’t win a bid you didn’t get invited to,” says Morgan.
“When we triple bid, we have diversity and inclusion in mind. You can’t win a bid you didn’t get invited to.”
Lindsay Morgan, chief marketing officer, Pizza Hut U.S.
Becky Carrel, executive producer at GSD&M, who hires the productions partners for Pizza Hut, looked to an organization named Free the Work. This non-profit organization creates opportunities for a global workforce of underrepresented creators behind the lens in TV, film and marketing.
Pamala Buzick, COO & director of partnerships at Free the Work, explains, “Our organization strives to be the most innovative, effective, and action-driven resource possible until industry-wide equality becomes a reality. We accomplish this goal through our Free the Work pledge, global talent database, community, DEI guidance, impact and insights reporting, and educational tools that help creators to demystify the media industries … we have lots of amazing, underrepresented creators that join every day, and a team that helps to find them. We love that Taste is part of our community.” Buzick encourages companies, “Keep hiring underrepresented creators. We love to see it. Our mission is to bring as many opportunities to underrepresented creators as possible. Diverse storytellers can change the world’s consciousness.”
Why it’s important
Elman says, “I don’t think men or women are really any better at these highly-skilled technical and very artistic jobs. But I do love it when I see women operating a camera or pulling focus or any other technical jobs that are traditionally held by men.”
Pizza Hut wants to include diverse talent in front of and behind the camera. Lindsay Morgan points out, “Many of our customers are women and diverse individuals, thus, we want to show up for our customers in a meaningful way.”