Retail

Taco Bell Continues Digital Shift With eGifting Platform

Taco Bell app

Taco Bell continues to embrace the digital-first economy with a new eGifting service called “Taco Gifter.” Launched on National Taco Day (Oct. 4) the service gives its customers an opportunity to gift tacos and is built for holiday giving as well as social participation. The gifting platform follows the June launch of its Taco Bell Rewards, which also leveraged digital platforms.

“Digital platforms have always been very important to us,” Taco Bell VP of Digital Experiences Zipporah Allen tells PYMNTS. “Now with the pandemic that’s accelerated consumer behavior, which has shifted dramatically this year. But when you think about where Taco Bell has been on its physical journey, we’ve been at really the forefront of the quick service restaurant industry in activating and engaging our fan base on digital channels. And what you’ve seen from us this year is just an acceleration of that strategy from our rewards program in June to looking at our ‘Go Mobile’ restaurant concept that really leans into the new behavior of consumers as a result of all the events this year.”

To send a taco, customers can download the Taco Bell app and find the platform in the Menu or visit tacobell.com/gifter. Users select a gift, enter the recipient’s name, add a personal message, check out and then send a unique URL via text, email, DM or any other form of communication. It will be a permanent addition to the app and website. To kick off the new service, Taco Bell is giving away a free taco to gift for the first 10,000 people who use it. Customers look to Taco Bell’s Twitter page to find out when those free tacos are available.

“Our fans really love connecting with each other and they love connecting with our brand,” Allen said. “As you see our campaign start to start to unfold. We’re going to heavily leverage social but we’ll also be leveraging some of our more traditional mediums as well like TV, digital video, etc. to make sure that we drive awareness for this as the next digital product launch from Taco Bell and it’s a fun one.”

Allen says the brand has been happy with the Taco Bell Rewards Program so far. Most recently it has been an essential element in its Xbox promotion, which is entering its fourth year. With the promotion, customers who purchase any medium or large drink via the Taco Bell app or in person will receive a code on their cup for a chance to win an Xbox bundle. The beverage promotion went live on Sept. 24, but the brand created another way to win an Xbox Series X even earlier via its digital rewards program. Customers who downloaded the Taco Bell app and joined the Taco Bell Rewards Beta program by Sept. 13 gained exclusive access to be included in daily drawings from Sept. 15 to Sept. 21.

“You know, our digital customers do tend to be our most loyal fans,” Allen said. “And for any customer that’s going to participate in a digital experience with a brand, they are looking for that deeper and more personalized relationship with the brand. And so we know that … our fans, love to be creative, they love [to have] a special experience in the digital channels. And so we want to keep them at the center of everything that we do.”

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NEW PYMNTS DATA: HOW WE SHOP – SEPTEMBER 2020 

The How We Shop Report, a PYMNTS collaboration with PayPal, aims to understand how consumers of all ages and incomes are shifting to shopping and paying online in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our research builds on a series of studies conducted since March, surveying more than 16,000 consumers on how their shopping habits and payments preferences are changing as the crisis continues. This report focuses on our latest survey of 2,163 respondents and examines how their increased appetite for online commerce and digital touchless methods, such as QR codes, contactless cards and digital wallets, is poised to shape the post-pandemic economy.

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