Real Mexicans Don’t Eat at Taco Bell
Taco Bell has an image problem. It is a fast food chain selling Mexican (inspired?) food, but Hispanics aren’t buying it – literally.
The chain has done well lately with same-store sales growing seven percent last year but, of that, only half a percentage point came from Latino customers.
Some believe Taco Bell’s problems lie with its advertising and others simply see the issue as being the chain’s menu offerings.
To deal with its issues, Taco Bell is considering more authentic Mexican dishes, such as carnitas, while running more commercials on Spanish language television.
Everett Hernandez, senior VP-general manager, diversity for Synovate, told AdAge.com that the issue is Taco Bell’s menu. “It’s not really Mexican food or food that unacculturated Hispanics know from their home country. It’s a new offering to them.”
Translating taglines is also an issue for the chain. The company’s current “Think Outside the Bun,” doesn’t translate well into Spanish. Instead, the chain uses “No solo de pan vive el hombre” (“man does not live by bread alone”) in its Spanish-language ads.
“If they want to broaden their Hispanic market … their issue is authenticity, and they have a lot of years of not being perceived as authentic to break through,” said Carl Kravetz, chairman-chief strategic officer of the ad agency Cruz/Kravetz: Ideas.
Discussion Questions: Should Taco Bell even attempt to attract a larger Hispanic customer base? What issues have worked against it so far?