- Chipotle Mexican Grill is now selling Cilantro Soap through its Chipotle Goods website, per a press release. The product riffs on memes about the fact that 4% to 14% of the population experiences a soapy flavor when they eat cilantro.
- Chipotle Rewards members can collect a Cilantro Lover badge from Dec. 2-8 as part of the program's Extras feature that allows users to unlock extra rewards points. In a separate rewards push, Chipotle tied up with video game Halo Infinite Multiplayer, delivering codes that let fans customize their gaming experience when they check out with promo code HALO117 from Dec. 1-31, per details emailed to Marketing Dive.
- The cilantro soap and Halo Infinite efforts see the restaurant chain engaging with culture — a heightened priority for QSR and CPG brands — by bringing digital moments to life and engaging with a gaming audience, respectively.
Chipotle's cilantro-scented soap and latest gaming activation demonstrate how the fast casual chain works to engage with consumers around culture — an increasing priority among its QSR competitors looking to attract younger, digitally native and ad-averse audiences that has led to rival Taco Bell naming a culture agency of record.
Chipotle has toyed with the idea of cilantro tasting like soap for a small part of the population on social media, going as far as mocking up the cilantro soap product on Instagram. The response to and popularity of these posts could have informed the chain's decision to actually sell the product.
"Our Cilantro Soap plays into a larger trend of turning digital moments into real life experiences," CMO Chris Brandt said in a press release.
The soap — and a new line of Chipotle Goods clothing that accompanies it — are Chipotle's latest forays into branded merchandise, which it has frequently utilized to be a part of consumers' lives beyond mealtime. The chain last month teamed with workwear brand Carhartt for limited-edition pieces as part of a campaign that sought to support the future of farming.
Likewise, Chipotle's tie-up with Halo Infinite Multiplayer — the newest release in the long-running sci-fi action game, and one that is breaking records — is its latest effort in the world of gaming, and follows a recent activation in Roblox. A special check-out code will let players activate five in-game bonuses called Halo Infinite Challenge Swaps and could boost engagement with its rewards program.
In addition, the Chipotle Challenger Series — which has previously activated Fortnite — will return Dec. 10-13, offering gamers a chance to face off against notable creators and esports stars in a Halo Infinite Multiplayer tournament that features $65,000 in cash and prizes. The chain will also host a Twitch livestream with top streamers on Dec. 15 that will give fans additional chances to win free food and prizes, per details emailed to Marketing Dive.