Doing Social Media Right – A Taco Bell Story

nantic    October 14, 2015

Title of Post: Doing Social Media Right – A Taco Bell Story

taco bell

Organization Name: Taco Bell (subsidiary of Yum! Brands, Inc.)

Industry: Fast Food

Web reference:,,,,

Description of how social media is used for business performance:

Using social media outlets to review products and services is a great way to for a company to figure out how they can improve on their products/services, address complaints, and stay in touch with customers, all for an extremely low cost. A fantastic example of this is Taco Bell (even though they are 53 years old). Taco Bell can be found on almost any social media site, including Twitter, FaceBook, Instagram, and YouTube. They have completely dominated their social media outlets, especially their Twitter account. Looking at their twitter page, they respond pretty much every tweet. Not only that, they’re pretty witty about it.

taco bell pinterest

Taco Bell has been doing so well with their social media that they have completely transcended social platforms. I, personally, don’t use twitter but since they use social media so well, I found out about their hilarious twitter posts through Pinterest.

Taco Bell is not afraid of interacting with their customers. To the smallest comments to more serious complaints, they will certainly respond.

They respond to the good:

taco bell date DM

Taco Bell responds to the bad:

taco bell harrassment

And they respond to the ugly:

This video stems from a lawsuit in 2011, indicating that they do not use real beef in their products. However, the lawsuit was dropped and Taco Bell responded by issuing a witty “Thank you for Suing Us” letter that they posted in newspapers, including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and USA Today.


Though this corporate transparency probably only stemmed from the lawsuit, Taco Bell deserves to be recognized for this and even addressed backlash towards the “secret recipe” by divulging the ingredients of their “secret recipe”.

And in true Taco Bell fashion, they responded to many people on Twitter about their victory.

lawsuit taco bell

Conclusion: Taco Bell’s use of social media, whether addressing the good, the bad, or the ugly, has become a prime example of how to dominate the social scene by interacting with customers. Specifically looking at their Twitter account, their commitment to responding and interacting with customers is extremely unique as it has completely transcended to other social media platforms and resulted in the 1.6 million Twitter followers.

Lessons for others: Interact with your customers. Companies will be exposed to bad media regardless if they are extremely active on social media or not. That’s just the way it is now with the internet. However, I do agree with the Huffington Post, that “whoever runs Taco Bell’s Twitter account deserves a raise”.

Submitted By: Nicole Antic, SMBP, University of Waterloo

If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Programme Director, Social Media for Business Performance.