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Old El Paso shows tacos aren't just for Tuesdays

Taco Fest gives brand the opportunity to celebrate the energy of the every day

Old El Paso is hoping to secure a tight grip on millennials with an experiential activation at Taco Fest in Toronto.

The General Mills-owned brand is offering guests a ride on the “Taco Bull”—a mechanical bucking bronco dressed up like a giant taco. Guests who “ride the bull, get a bowl”—a free sample of Old El Paso’s new Tortilla Bowls, a soft tortilla in the shape of a bowl.

“The idea is to allow people to get involved with Old El Paso in a really fun and spirited way,” said Jason Doolan, director of marketing at General Mills.

The activation is part of a larger mission to connect younger millennials with the brand. Consumer research for Old El Paso showed the brand over-indexed with millennial families, but under-indexed with small households with only one or two people.

“We decided we have to start putting an eye on those millennials who perhaps have not started to create families yet, and find a way to introduce ourselves in a way that is relevant,” said Doolan.

Earlier this month, Old El Paso launched its “Tacos Make Everything Better” campaign—the first advertising effort in the shift towards targeting younger consumers. The campaign, created by Cossette, includes 15-second TV and online spots based on the idea that “no matter what’s going on with your life—whether it’s a good news story or your kid homing home with a bad report card—tacos make it better,” said Doolan.

Natalie Wallace, associate marketing managing at General Mills, said the Taco Fest activation was “the perfect way for us to bring that brand purpose to life, celebrating the energy and the optimism of the every day.”

Taco Fest, hosted by Taste Toronto, takes place June 17-19.

This article first appeared on

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