For taco fans (and Doritos fans), March 7 was a long time coming. At long last, Taco Bell finally debuted its new Cool Ranch Doritos Taco Loco at U.S. restaurants, expanding on the big popularity of last year’s Nacho Cheese flavour Doritos tacos.
My friend and I drove down to Buffalo to sample this U.S.-only delicacy. Here’s my video review:
The most mystifying thing about either of the Doritos tacos is that they’re not yet available outside the United States. You’d think that with their big popularity south of the border, parent Yum Brands would be in a hurry to export them and capitalize.
I put in several requests for comment with a Yum representative in Canada, but got no response.
I asked Darren Tristano, executive vice-president of food industry consulting firm Technomic, for his thoughts. Here’s what he said:
It is very difficult for larger chains to roll out programs with new products. Generally they start with a test group, measure success within different demographics and determine whether to proceed with a larger more regional or national roll-out. Once advertising begins, consumers nationwide expect to be able to get the products locally so chains have to be careful. After a national roll-out, they measure results and determine whether to roll it out more globally and brands need to confirm that the supply chain supports the roll-out which can take time to set it up with production and distribution.
Those chains that take care to roll out products with careful attention to detail have the greatest chances of success. In the meantime, social media can create buzz around the idea of the introduction.
Take a look at the Pizza Hut perfume that was awarded to ‘fans’ last year in Canada. This year, it was rolled out to 6 countries and created a huge social media success.