First of all, I think the new Taco Bell slogan “Live Más” is a good change. ‘Think Outside the Bun” was a good slogan, but with the increase in healthy alternatives to ‘bun’ food elsewhere, it was time for a change. My Spanish is a bit rusty and I didn’t exactly know what más meant and had to look it up. It means ‘more,’ if you are wondering. I’m sure if Taco Bell sticks with the slogan, everyone will know what más means in a year or two. While the slogan is great, I do question the most recent spot featuring the Doritos Locos Tacos.
I’m sure the tacos are great and I can see how doing some cross-branding with Doritos is a great move, as I suspect the demographics are almost identical. So far it’s all going well, but then I saw the commercial. The commercial features a young college-aged man going on a road trip with his friends. That in and of itself I can relate to, as I’m sure college-aged kids can to. When I was that age, I went on plenty of road trips and hitting the local Taco Bell would be a good choice to take a break from driving all day and night. This is definitely living más for a college kid. But it’s the purpose of the road trip in the commercial that falls short and doesn’t deliver.
The young man has grabbed his friends and hit the road for a 965-mile road trip to a Taco Bell restaurant. The reasoning behind the road trip was that the Doritos Locos Tacos were tested in just a few markets last year and the closest one to this young man was 965 miles away. I can understand one crazy friend who perhaps would have done this during his college years, but the fact that he was able to get some friends to go along with him is not believable. With the rise in gas prices and college kids on limited budgets, it’s understandable that they would save up for a road trip to see a concert or hit the beach for spring break or go to New Orleans for Mardi Gras. They wouldn’t spend hundreds of dollars on gas and a whole day on the road in order to buy a $1.29 taco. I would have hoped that one of them was an economics major or a marketing major so they could have pointed out the costs to get there as well as the popularity of Doritos and how one would expect this taco to reach all stores as it would seem to be a popular choice for teenagers and college students. But apparently there was a lack of those two majors in the car.
I think if they would have made the destination of the road trip more believable and more of an aspiration for that age group, it would have been a more effective commercial. At that age, there’s something memorable about driving all night with your friends to arrive in ‘paradise.’ Whether that ‘paradise’ is Mardi Gras or Daytona Beach or Coachella or Burning Man, it’s something many in this demographic can relate to and have experienced or dream of experiencing. Pursuing one of those road trips and perhaps hitting the Taco Bell along the way is living más. That is the type of road trip they should have focused on instead of putting so much focus on the taco that it becomes the road trip destination. Thankfully I only have to drive a couple miles to get my Locos Tacos. I may not be living más, but I’ll end up having más in my wallet.
Aaron Whitaker is a copywriter, blogger, and social media aficionado who likes watching the TV commercials more than the actual shows. He prefers reading the magazine ads over the articles. And you can learn more about him online right here.