Odd pitch about ‘gender-reveal’ lasagna goes viral

Journalists and social media users had mixed reactions to the offering touting itself as ‘mouthwatering’ as well as innovative. The PR effort landed chatter and media coverage.

A wacky PR pitch has earned its weight in gold cheese after making the rounds online.

Villa Italian Kitchen recently announced a party option for parents-to-be: A gender-reveal lasagna.

The dish, which includes a “secret pink or blue interior” enclosed inside layers of cheese, Alfredo sauce and imported Italian pasta, serves 12 people and comes with garlic rolls and a Caesar or Greek salad. The meal will set you back $140, but news of your baby’s gender should spread like wildfire online.

That is, if your gender reveal party takes off like Villa’s PR pitch.

KSAT 12 producer Ellie Holmes declared the pitch to have “possibly the best subject line in an email”:

Journalist for Philadelphia publication The Inquirer said the pitch was a “clear frontrunner” for the year:

Take hope, PR pros: 2019 has just begun, so there is time for you to beat this zany pitch.

Though a few journalists (perhaps sarcastically) lauded the pitch, several others tweeted their confusion and distaste for the press release about colored cheese:

News of the pitch spread on Twitter, grabbing strong responses—which could have contributed to the number of headlines it also received. Articles about the dish appeared in Complex, New York Post (which called it “gross”), Deseret News, Today.com and NJ.com (which said it went “a fork too far”) and more.

The other reason the weird PR pitch landed well was probably due to the popular trend Villa newsjacked. Villa even added a hashtag to its announcement: #LasagnaReveal.

Today reported:

Gender-reveal parties have become more over-the-top lately: Expectant parents have shot a target with a gun loaded with colored gunpowder, had an alligator eat pink or blue Jell-O, smashed eggs on each other’s foreheads and used a monster truck to drop blue balloons at a Monster Jam event.

While these gender reveal parties frequently go viral, it’s sometimes because the reveals go awry. The couple who shot at a target with sparked a massive wildfire in Arizona that destroyed 45,000 acres of land and cost $8 million in damage. (and, it’s a boy!) The alligator gender reveal included a scary moment when the gator wanders toward a child. One gender-reveal party ended in a fight at an Ohio Applebee’s, according to Fox 8 Cleveland.

Despite the snarkiness on Twitter and negative headlines, the pitch is doing exactly what it was intended to do: Grab attention and spark conversation.

What do you think of the pitch, PR Daily readers?


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