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Papa John's Gives Middle Finger to Neo-Nazis
By: AdAge
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The tweet comes after Founder, Chairman and CEO John Schnatter blamed its weak sales on the NFL during an earnings call and criticized the league's response to player protests. This led to American neo-Nazi site The Daily Stormer creating an image of a swastika out of a pepperoni pizza, which included the line "Papa John: Official pizza of the alt-right?"

 

Since then, the pizza chain has been trying to recover from Schnatter's statements.

On Tuesday, Papa John's tweeted that the statements on its earnings call "were describing the factors that impact our business and we sincerely apologize to anyone that thought they were divisive."

The brand decided to post the three consecutive tweets because "it became clear over the last week or so that our position wasn't clear," said Brandon Rhoten, CMO of Papa John's, via email.

"Yesterday's post was the first step of many in finding a positive way forward," he said,

Rhoten, who joined Papa John's nine months after it most recently renewed its NFL sponsorship, also said that the earnings call remarks were "not intended to be a statement about the right to protest or the serious social issues prompting the protests." The comments were supposed to reflect "the impact of the NFL" on its business, he said.

"Our opportunity is to diversify and apply clear attribution to our marketing to better our return on spend," said Rhoten in the email. "Which is exactly what the team has been working on since I started a few months ago. It won't happen overnight, but this is critical to our future success."

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This was originally published on AdAge. A link to the original story follows this post. www.adage.com
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