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Taco Bell Meets Wedding Bells In Las Vegas

The chain is driving foot traffic to its new Las Vegas Strip location with an unusual stunt: an on-site wedding for the winners of its #LoveAndTacos social media contest.

Taco Bell is thinking way outside the box when it comes to driving foot traffic to its new Taco Bell Cantina flagship in Las Vegas: The quick-serve chain is running a social media campaign that will result in a wedding — in a chapel inside the new restaurant location.

You read that right. But while a white gown and a Crunch Wrap Supreme might not seem to be a match made in heaven, the idea is to stage an event that will drive people to check out the restaurant location — even if they’re just coming to gawk at a couple getting married with a Baja Blast drink in hand. So, is it a brilliant experiential marketing move, or a fiasco that’s bound to end with hot sauce stains on satin? Or both? Let’s dive in.

#LoveAndTacos

Here’s how it works: Any brave couple eager to win a free wedding at Taco Bell Cantina can share a video about Taco Bell’s role in their life/love story on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #LoveAndTacosContest. On March 1st, Taco Bell enthusiasts — and official judges — will begin evaluating the finalists, with one winner receiving the grand prize that includes airfare for six to Las Vegas, a catered Cantina dinner, a room at Planet Hollywood, additional tickets and prizes, and, yes, the wedding itself.

Taco Bell plans to live stream the ceremony for fans worldwide — but Taco Bell customers who voted in the contest will be invited to actually attend. The idea is that these existing customers, as well as local onlookers, will have a compelling reason to check out the Las Vegas Strip restaurant and try out its new menu items; really, who isn’t at least a little curious to see how this spectacle might turn out?

The brand appears to be doing a few things right with this campaign: It incorporates mobile and social, it allows the brand to broadcast a live stream — increasingly important as a component of social media marketing — and it has a real-time event tied to a physical location. Blending these elements together as seamlessly as possible is key to designing successful online-to-offline marketing that drives foot traffic.

That said, couldn’t Taco Bell have accomplished the same goal by making the event a concert with a popular Las Vegas performer or a celebrity dinner meet and greet? Quite probably. The wedding contest likely runs a higher risk of getting labeled as just a strange stunt. But then again, the unexpected Taco Bell/matrimony pairing certainly has people talking on Twitter.

In any case, Taco Bell execs appear sold on this latest attempt at some cheeky fun: “I love that we are taking Taco Bell all the way to wedding bells,” said Marisa Thalberg, CMO at Taco Bell. “From sauce packet proposals to couples catering their wedding parties and afterparties with Taco Bell, we have known for years that some of our most creative fans have been incorporating Taco Bell into this momentous occasion.”

Cheers to all the Taco Bell-loving couples out there, and (Baja Breeze) bottoms up.