The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and digital. View this season's finalists!

Special Project

Special Project
From the 7th Annual Shorty Awards

Papa John’s Custom NFL Team Pizzas

Entered in Real-Time Response, Instagram, Food & Beverage


Objective: Showcase the partnership between Papa John's and the NFL in a unique way and launch the brand's Instagram channel during the NFL draft— a teaser to our larger NFL season long program.

Strategy: In order to create shareable, engaging content as well as highlight the better ingredients used in Papa John's pizza, we gave NFL fans, their very own piece of content that connects to both their favorite team and our commitment to 'better pizza.'

We hired a pizza artist to create real life NFL team logos on pizza. To capture the before and after, we filmed the full pizza build process right in our Papa John's kitchen and edited the whole pizza build in hyperlapse video format. We featured the exclusive team centric content on Instagram as an official channel launch mechanism. To encourage sharing of the content, we released the first set of videos during the NFL Draft, fueling the brand's second screen habits during the nationally televised event.

Outcome: Since we released the pizzas during the Draft, the relevancy in conjunction with the TV announcements made real-time, helped drive engagement. We saw increased positive reactions from our fans and successfully expanded onto a new platform (Instagram). Due to the reception, we created additional customized NFL team logo videos (20 in total) and released them on our social channels throughout the NFL season. Because of these efforts, we increased engagement and drove growth of our Instagram numbers (now over 6K fans, starting from 0 at the NFL Draft).

Strategy and Execution

These creative videos showcase Papa John's strong partnership with the NFL, played out in customized ingredients in real-time on actual pizzas built from pizza toppings. This execution is unique to Papa John's as it leverages our stance as the Official Pizza Sponsor or the NFL, but also a strong connection to our 20 local team affiliations. The ownable hyperlapse video build technique exemplified our commitment to Better Ingredients to our social fans while also stirring up team pride.


Entrant Company / Organization Name

Papa John's, GREY New York


Entry Credits