What is in this article?:
- Taco Bell responds to Cool Ranch taco tumult
- Ad campaign goes 3-D
Fans were disappointed when some of Taco Bell's U.S. restaurants didn’t have the new flavor of Doritos Locos Tacos available.
Taco Bell debuted its Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Tacos Thursday, a day after an attempted early peek for social media fans produced a mixed bag of cheers and jeers.
Officials with the 5,600-unit chain said reports that some fans could not find the new tacos were overblown, and said the chain’s use of social media helped pinpoint and rectify the situation for those who were denied.
After building suspense for the second flavor in the Doritos Locos Taco line for months, Taco Bell made a surprise announcement on Facebook this week that its social media fans could taste the new Cool Ranch tacos on Wednesday, a day before the official launch.
However, some U.S. restaurants didn’t have the tacos available Wednesday, leaving some fans disappointed.
Brian Terwilliger of Kissimmee, Fla., said he tried to visit three restaurants Wednesday, only to be told the tacos were not yet available.
“I’ve been waiting for this taco a long time and heard the announcement via Facebook and Twitter,” he said in an email to Nation’s Restaurant News. “Driving around to be denied is outrageous considering the advertisement you guys [Taco Bell] released on this taco.”
Taco Bell spokesman Rob Poetsch said the company saw a few posted complaints and immediately called every unit in the U.S. to verify they were participating. They determined that 96 percent of the system was offering Cool Ranch tacos to fans who asked on Wednesday, as promised, he said.
Restaurants that didn’t have the tacos probably had not gotten the message about the early preview, or did not get the details right, he said. “There are always a few stores that aren’t ready,” he noted.
Since promotion for the Cool Ranch tacos has largely been through social media, Taco Bell took the negative posts as an opportunity to continue engaging users and take action, Poetsch said. “Engagement is not selective,” Poetsch said. “We didn’t want anyone to be disappointed.”
Taco Bell’s social media team immediately reached out to those who posted complaints, connecting them to the nearest Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Taco.
Terwilliger was directed to a restaurant where a 12-pack of Cool Ranch tacos — on the house — was waiting for him. His verdict: “They were good. I liked them better than the nacho cheese ones, but I love Cool Ranch Doritos.”
By Thursday, Poetsch said all restaurants were offering the Cool Ranch tacos. “There were no shortage issues whatsoever,” he said. “We are geared up to sell millions.”