While looking at BuzzFeed’s BringMe! Facebook channel on CrowdTangle, we found that an over performing topic in the last 30 days was a video of Pickle Pizza titled “Pickled Pizza Is About To Be Your New Fave.”¹
Consulting additional social media platforms, we discovered that Pickle Pizza was a trend that was just made public around the time that BuzzFeed released this video: October 5, 2018. Users were referencing the BringMe video when discussing this food on Twitter and Instagram.
The timing of the release of the video and the discussions referencing the BuzzFeed post contributed to the high engagement and trending of this topic. Discussions occurred at places like “Insider” publishing a similar piece of content that reported on the same restaurant and Pickle Pizza. “Insider” released this piece prior to BuzzFeed’s post, which means that the food trend of Pickle Pizza was just starting to circulate.²
Additionally, celebrity engagement played a role in promoting user engagement. Gordon Ramsay, celebrity chef and prominent media icon, commented on the pizza video “No”, and people went crazy. The comment got over 1.6K likes and 300 replies. Users engaged with his comment and tagged their friends. Due to Gordon Ramsay’s recent trending social media stunts like his “vow to go vegan for a day”, the fact that he commented on this post makes viewers see that the post must be something worth viewing.
Another trend in the comments is a discussion of the pineapple pizza debate, and how if pineapples aren’t “acceptable” to put on pizza, then why are pickles? This is because since Pickle Pizza is being viewed as something just as controversial, viewers brought up the pineapple debate as they see it as relevant here. Seemingly, controversial content sparks popularity and engagement, hence why this post reached virality.
Lastly, the content and presentation of the video also contributed to the virality. The cover photo is engaging with the use of an uncommon combination of foods, which grabs the attention of viewers as it appears on their newsfeed. Then, the video itself also keeps engagement, as it highlights the name of the pizza,”The Big Dill.” The 3 minute long video shows the entire construction of the pizza with all of its ingredients, and ending with customers eating it and having their real life initial reactions to the controversial slice.
BuzzFeed’s BringMe! was one of the first channels to pick up on this food trend allowing BuzzFeed to be credited for high user engagement towards the topic.
- “Bring Me.” Bring Me – Pickle Pizza Is About To Be Your New Fave, www.facebook.com/buzzfeedbringme/videos/pickle-pizza-is-about-to-be-your-new-fave/344641992770135/.
- “NEW YORK INSIDER.” NEW YORK INSIDER – Pizza Covered In Pickles And Garlic Sauce, www.facebook.com/insidernewyork/videos/1870549919689059/.
Olivia Sharf, Emily Campbell, Erica Wilk, Alexis Bruun