- Taco Bell and Major League Baseball team up for the sixth time for the "Steal a Base, Steal a Taco" promotion in which the chain will give away a free taco to every customer after the first ballplayer steals a base during the upcoming World Series games, per a press release.
- If a base is stolen during game one or two of the World Series, the free Doritos Locos Tacos will be distributed on November 1 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. local time. If the first base is stolen on game three or later, tacos will be given away on November 7 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
- Supporting the promotion is a campaign that includes ads, social media, public relations outreach and a dedicated webpage at www.TacoBell.com/StealABase. In one ad, a quick succession of very short videos is enhanced with bright graphical starbursts and flying tacos, resulting in an ad that looks like it was created with a video messaging app.
Taco Bell has clearly found a winning promotion in a tie-up with Major League Baseball that has lasted for six years. The longevity of the promotion means the pressure is on the chain to keep it fresh for customers so they still feel excited about getting a free taco. The ad, with its use of bright graphical overlays that look like digital stickers and emojis users of Instagram and Snapchat can add to videos they then share gives the brand a way to update the campaign in a way that is likely to resonate with younger consumers who are active on these platforms.
The ad is the latest example of how the popularity of Instagram Stories and Snapchat Stories as well as social media platforms more broadly are influencing traditional TV advertising. For example, Fox recently starting selling six-ad inventory in a nod to the popularity of super-short ads on digital media.
Taco Bell has repeatedly shown a penchant for leveraging the popularity of mobile apps. The chain saw an 8% increase in late-night weekend customer visits after partnering with ride-hailing company Lyft to let passengers request a stop at a restaurant drive-through. In the spring, Taco Bell invited Instagram users around the U.S. to try new chalupas and photograph them, providing lights and props for them to use.
Other recent campaigns from Taco Bell include an effort that expanded National Taco Day on October 4 into more of a seasonal event and a collaboration with retailer Forever 21 on a “food fashion” clothing line.