Complete Marketing Strategy of Taco Bell – Detailed Explanation

Updated on: Oct 3, 2023
Marketing Strategy of Taco Bell - Featured Image

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My name is Aditya Shastri and I have written this case study with the help of my students from IIDE's online digital marketing courses in India.

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In our previous blog, we learned about the SWOT analysis of Dunkin’ Donuts. In this article, we are going to talk about the marketing strategy of Taco Bell based in the United States, and also one of the largest Mexican food chains in the world, as well as a quick-service restaurant.

Taco Bell is the 4th best fast-food restaurant. Taco Bell has been functioning since 1962, which indicates that they are winning the hearts of its customers for the last 6 decades. Does the question strike your mind? It’s because they have invented and delivered food that people relish and will continue with this performance in the future as well.

Another vital feature that makes Taco Bell so successful is its amazing marketing practices. The world is evolving with everything moving online, it has become important to market your business online using the latest tools and technology. If you feel the urge to grasp more knowledge about digital marketing. Give a shot at our Free Masterclass on Digital Marketing especially prepared and brought to the table for beginners by our CEO Karan Shah.

Excited to learn about how Taco Bell became so successful in the fast-food industry? Stay tuned in with us as we will take you through a complete marketing strategy of Taco Bell and will help you decode the answer. Before commencement, let us learn more about Taco Bell.

Digital Marketing Academic Challenge 2024 - DMAC

About Taco Bell

Marketing Strategy Of Taco Bell - The Founder of Taco Bell - Glen Bell
(The Founder of Taco Bell – Glen Bell, Source: Taco Bell)

Taco Bell was founded by Glen Bell in Irvine, California 1962. It is an American-based fast-food restaurant that delivers a variety of lip-smacking dishes that are Mexican-inspired foods, such as tacos, burritos, quesadillas, nachos, novelty, and specialty items. 

Taco Bell which was previously a subsidiary of PepsiCo is now a subsidiary of Yum! Brands and serves about 2 million customers every year. It has 7072 restaurants out of which more than 93 percent are owned and operated by independent franchisees and licensees. 

It all started in 1948 with a small hot dog stand where the founder Glen used to sell hot dogs on the street, he saw that a Mexican restaurant named Mitla Cafe was getting immense traffic from customers for hard-shelled tacos. Glen started learning the recipe for Tacos and eventually, he attempted to reverse-engineer the recipe in his style with the idea of selling crispy-shell tacos from the window of his hamburger stand which really became successful among Mexican eaters and became the foundation of Taco Bell in 1962. 

Before settling on Taco Bell in 1962 it went through several name changes from 1951 to 1961 from Taco-Tia to El Taco, finally, in 1962 the popular taco-selling shop got the name Taco Bell.

Quick Stats on Taco Bell
CEO Mark King
CMO Dhruv Kaul
Area Served USA, Asia, Oceania, the middle east, and other countries.
Industry Restaurant-QSR
Market Share/ Revenue $5,652
Vision To grow into the largest fast-food provider of Mexican-style cuisine in emerging markets.
Tagline It’s just made for us

What’s new with Taco Bell

Check out some current news about Taco Bell:

  • A tiff over Taco Tuesday is heating up, with Taco Bell asking U.S. regulators to force a Wyoming-based fast-food chain to abandon its longstanding claim to “Taco Tuesday” as a trademark.
  • Taco Bell has the fastest drive-thru, and its latest tech could get customers their orders even faster.
  • The 2023 Taco Bell commercial song by Teezo Touchdown.

Target Audience of Taco Bell

The target customers of Taco Bell include Young adults and teenagers, Budget-conscious consumers, Late-night and fast-food enthusiasts, and College students.

Here is a buyer persona to get a clear understanding of target audience of Taco Bell:

Buyer’s Persona






20 years




  • Affordable and tasty fast food.
  • Convenience and quick service.
  • Variety in flavors.
  • Late-night and on-the-go dining.

Interest & Hobbies

  • Socializing with peers.
  • Following pop culture trends.
  • Late-night entertainment.
  • Exploring diverse cuisines.

Pain Points

  • Limited healthy options.
  • Nutritional concerns.
  • Long drive-thru wait times.
  • Inconsistent food quality.

Social Media Presence

  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • Facebook
  • Tinder

Now that we have got clear insights about the company, let us move further to have a look at the marketing strategy of Taco Bell.

Marketing Strategy of Taco Bell

Segmentation, targeting, and positioning

The demographics-based segmentation is geared toward young people and kids between 18 and 35. The market sector is divided by income categories, with attention focused mostly on the lower-middle-upper income group. Those that fall under the behavioural category regard fast food as a cheap alternative to a healthy diet.

The target demographic is young people and children in the middle and upper classes between the ages of 18 and 35. To keep up with the younger generation’s tendencies, the menu includes healthier selections. Fitness enthusiasts who appreciate eating wholesome snacks or meals are drawn to this.

Taco Bell has positioned itself in a market where consumers prefer healthier fast food, and as a response, it has expanded its menu to include wholesome items.

Digital Marketing Strategy of Taco Bell

Social Media Marketing

TACO BELL is active on Social Media like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. It has more followers on Instagram than on Facebook and Twitter. The Instagram handle has followers in the range of around 30K. The Twitter handle has 4k followers. Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook all are used for the promotion of new product launches and new offers.

They promote their products on their social media pages, make announcements, do advertising, and promote their campaigns. So the goal of their social media marketing approach is to engage customers by creating fascinating content that they can’t resist looking at.

Taco Bell has many followers on Instagram and Twitter and they are very active on these two social media platforms with their content because they are actively posting their content.

SEO Strategies                    

Marketing Strategy Of Taco Bell - SEO

As per SEO ranking, it is said that the number of keywords – below 500 is bad, above 1000 is good, and 10,000+ is amazing. As we can see www. 6,707 has organic keywords and it’s considered as good. That means the digital marketing of Taco Bell is gaining a good number of insights. 

Also, the traffic per month is around 100k which is amazing. Hence, Taco Bell does not require improvements. 

Influencer Marketing

For marketing purposes, Taco Bell collaborates with a large number of digital influencers, YouTubers, and bloggers. Some of the influencers have millions of followers, while others have only a few hundred thousand. This allows the brand to reach a large number of people through influencers’ followers, increasing brand awareness and followers, and eventually increasing sales.

E-commerce Strategies

Marketing Strategy Of Taco Bell - Ecom

When it comes to e-commerce methods, Taco Bell has a website where they sell their items with discounts. Apart from that, it has partnered with other meal delivery apps like Zomato and Swiggy to bring food to eateries, and users can even order via Instagram.

Mobile App

Marketing Strategy Of Taco Bell - Mobile App

Taco Bell has its own app Taco Bell In with 100k downloads in the Play Store. one can order via their app as well. Users can officially download the Taco Bell® app from the App Store and Play Store. You can also earn points on every qualifying order and reward yourself with free food. Gain access to exclusives only available on the app. Order tacos for delivery or pickup.

Content Marketing Strategies

Taco Bell is very active on social media. The post content is related to their new menu or their products, awareness messages, etc. The only source of posting content is through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Also, their press releases about their product via various sources which are food pages.

Marketing and Advertising Campaigns by Taco Bell

Marketing Strategy Of Taco Bell - Campaign 1

TACO BELL hosted a four-day taco swap in May 2022. It was a multi-market promotion that spanned 25 countries. During this campaign, participants can exchange their lunch meal for a complimentary taco. They collaborated with Avneet Kaur and other influencers for this campaign. In the taco-loving community, TACO BELL has developed customer loyalty. The goal of this promotion was to increase customer engagement and persuade people to switch their meals for free.

The campaign was successful and the likes on their social media posts such as Instagram increased by 3x more compared to the previous posts. It was the continuation of the ‘ISEE TACO campaign which was TACO BELL’s first global marketing campaign.

Marketing Strategy Of Taco Bell - Campaign 2

This campaign ran on Instagram from April 4th to May 1st, 2022, with Hardik Pandya and several other influencers and celebrities using the hashtag #BEONEWITHGAME. Anyone can enter the contest by just ordering a taco from TACO BELL. One lucky winner gets an Xbox One S, as well as a 12-month subscription to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which includes Cricket 22 and PC game passcodes. There were more than 60 winners, each receiving an Xbox One S and other prizes.

This ad is targeted toward gamers and the Gen Z audience. This campaign was a huge success thanks to the high level of customer interaction. Just by collaborating digitally, the reels’ videos and posts grew by 3x.

Marketing Strategy Of Taco Bell - Campaign 3

TACO BELL astonished its customers by introducing the greatest cheese taco at a reasonable price in this ad. This was created for their cheese-loving taco fans after the success of their cheese burritos and quesadillas menu. By making posts and reel videos, this campaign was created in digital partnership with comedian Akash Gupta and other celebrities. This promotion was created in partnership with the Age of Empires:4 PC game. Participants can join by ordering via the Taco Bell website or app, or by simply going to a restaurant, and using the hashtag #Gameforthecheese.

The post and associated video for this campaign received 3x the number of likes as a previous post. After a successful launch of cheese burritos and quesadillas, they expanded their menu.

Before we conclude the study on the marketing strategy of Taco Bell. Let us see the competitors of Taco Bell and an controversial campaign of Taco Bell:

Top 5 competitors of Taco Bell

  1. McDonald’s: One of the largest fast-food chains globally, known for its burgers, fries, and various menu items. Known for its extensive menu, including burgers, chicken, and breakfast items, McDonald’s competes with Taco Bell in the fast-food market.
  2. KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken): Famous for its fried chicken and Southern-inspired menu items. making it a direct competitor with Taco Bell, which offers various Mexican-inspired items.
  3. Subway: A sandwich chain known for its customizable subs and salads. Subway is known for its fresh and customizable sandwich options.
  4. Burger King: Burger King is another major fast-food chain known for its burgers and other fast-food items. While not Mexican-themed, it competes with Taco Bell in the quick-service restaurant segment.
  5. Wendy’s: Offers hamburgers, chicken sandwiches, and salads, often emphasizing fresh ingredients. Wendy’s has been known for its witty and sometimes edgy advertising campaigns, while Taco Bell has often targeted a younger, more adventurous audience with its marketing.

Example of a strategy of Taco Bell that faced viewer’s backlash:

The company previously had items such as the naked egg taco and the waffle taco on their Breakfast Menu that were not a big hit among consumers. So to apologize for this they came up with an ad campaign.

Pete Davidson and Taco Bell teamed up to use Davidson as the face of their commercial, “The Apology.”

“We apologize. We overindulged in our breakfast. The brand captioned its YouTube video featuring the former cast member of “Saturday Night Live” with, “All you need in the morning is tasty, simple food.” When Davidson, 28, was heard saying, “Sometimes we go too far,” he was spotted strolling inside a Taco Bell. Taco Bell recruited me to apologize on their behalf because I have, for that reason.”

“When it came to breakfast, Taco Bell got a little crazy. It was excessive,” he went on. Then, the company’s iconic morning dish, the morning Crunch wrap, was featured in the commercial.

But this apology ad too faced some criticism. The commercial campaign, which highlights Taco Bell’s now-simplified morning menu of quesadillas, crunch wrap, and breakfast burritos, has angered diehard Taco Bell customers who appear to merely dislike Davidson.

Hence, the marketing strategy of Taco Bell needs to be well thought out to attract and retain an audience and beat the competition.

This ends with an elaborative study of the marketing strategy of Taco Bell. Let us conclude our learning below from the marketing strategy of Taco Bell.

Digital Marketing Academic Challenge 2024 - DMAC

Conclusion — What is unique in Taco Bell’s marketing?

TACO BELL is a one-of-a-kind healthy fast food quick-service restaurant that delivers nutritious tacos, burritos, and quesadillas. TACO BELL is gaining popularity among young people and fitness enthusiasts around the country. Because it is the only taco brand in the food market, there is less competition. Taco Bell’s innovative marketing techniques include collaborations with game developers, cricketers, and influencers. Taco Bell is the only company that collaborates with games and rewards participants with items valued at up to $30,000.

Digital marketing is crucial since it links a company with its clients when they are online and is effective across all sectors. It links businesses with ideal consumers through SEO and PPC on Google, social media marketing, and email marketing. If you would like to learn more and develop skills, check out IIDE’s 4-Month Digital Marketing Course to learn more.

Alternatively, you can enrol in one of our free online masterclasses led by IIDE’s CEO, Karan Shah, to gain insight into the field of digital marketing. 

We hope this blog on the marketing strategy of Taco Bell has given you a good insight into the company’s marketing strategies.

If you like such in-depth analysis of companies just like the marketing strategy of Taco Bell check out our IIDE Knowledge portal for more fascinating case studies.

Thank you for taking the time to read the marketing strategy of Taco Bell, and do share your thoughts on this case study marketing strategy of Taco Bell in the comments section below.

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Aditya Shastri

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]


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