Calm, Purple and… Pizza Hut? Why a Weighted Pizza Blanket Is Gravity’s Next Move

A partnership with Pizza Hut delivers a new audience

Only 528 Original Pan Blankets will be available for purchase. Pizza Hut
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Have you ever wished you could snuggle up with pizza? Now, thanks to a partnership between Pizza Hut and premium sleep brand Gravity Products, you can.

This seemingly odd couple has united to produce a limited-edition pizza-themed Gravity blanket: the Original Pan Weighted Blanket, which, of course, will be delivered in a cardboard pizza box.

Pizza Hut’s agency of record, GSD&M, approached Gravity with the idea in August. Gravity Products CEO Mike Grillo responded that he was “super interested” for several reasons.

“Strategically, Gravity’s had a lot of focus on one specific demographic, [which is] the coastal audience,” he said. “And I think that’s an oversimplification, but we have been looking for ways to broaden our reach outside of the digitally native crowd.”

Gravity made a similar move to expand its addressable market over the summer when it released a weighted robe, offering the benefits of its deep pressure blankets at a lower price point. In a similar vein, the Original Pan Blanket will be available for $150—a 25% discount off comparable weighted blankets from Gravity—starting Nov. 18. Only 528 blankets will be available for purchase on the Original Pan Blanket website.

‘Almost as warm and toasty as the legendary pizza itself’

The 72-inch-diameter blanket includes a microfleece duvet cover that Grillo said was digitally printed with a high-res image of a pepperoni pizza while the bottom is “a specific shade of crust tan.”

And because it is a Gravity Blanket, it includes 15 pounds of deep pressure, which promises improved sleep and reduced anxiety. That’s according to Pizza Hut, which said the blanket also “[mimics] the unbeatable feeling of indulging in an Original Pan Pizza.”

Because the pitch came when Gravity was planning its holiday orders, “it was pretty easy to slot it in from just a bandwidth perspective,” Grillo said. The filling is custom, but “once you have the dimensions, our machines are filling blankets at a pretty high velocity,” which meant no disruption to the supply chain.

While Grillo said they hope the blanket “will sell out in an hour or so,” he also noted this is “a pure brand play,” meaning neither Gravity nor Pizza Hut are looking to make money off of it. (At the same time, he said the cost of goods was much higher than a typical Gravity blanket, which is in part why the run was kept fairly small.)

This makes the Pizza Hut collaboration much different than other Gravity partners like meditation app Calm or mattress brand Purple, which “are co-branded with their big commercial programs that generate a lot of money for both companies,” Grillo said.

So why Pizza Hut? And why now?

“While the wellness crowd really knows Gravity, you don’t necessarily need to be a wellness enthusiast to care about your sleep,” Grillo said. “And so I think for us it was a nice low-hanging fruit opportunity to reach someone we’ve probably not been speaking to in our regular marketing communications.”

Indeed, he surmised Pizza Hut is not running ads on the same TV stations as Gravity. Therefore, the partnership is “an opportunity to talk to someone that we weren’t typically talking to,” Grillo said. And reaching a broader audience will be important as 3-year-old Gravity seeks to become “a real sustainable, massive brand.” It also helps fend off competitors with similar offerings and cement Gravity as a “real branded player.”

“We try to defend that as much as possible,” Grillo said. “You can’t rest on your laurels at all—the brand is a big part of the value [proposition], so we’re trying to do as much of this as possible.”

@lisalacy Lisa Lacy is a senior writer at Adweek, where she focuses on retail and the growing reach of Amazon.