As inflation bore down on the restaurant industry, Del Taco doubled down on value.
The California-based fast food chain has found great success behind its “20 under $2” value menu, assembled while other chains and their franchisees were pulling back or abandoning their value offerings as ingredient and labor costs climbed, according to Tim Hackbardt, chief marketing officer of Del Taco, speaking on the latest edition of Ad Age's Marketer’s Brief podcast.
“We knew at that time [fall of 2021] that inflation was coming for the restaurant industry and our prices were going to go up for ingredients and things like that. And so our bet was that pretty much all the other brands were going to bail out of that [value] space. And we knew we could compete in that space, we just had to do it in a little bit [of a] different way,” Hackbardt said.
Moving the advertised price point from $1 to $2 gave Del Taco plenty of room to assemble a menu that was “massively competitive,” Hackbardt said.
“Strategically, when we originally created [the value menu], we felt that because of the breadth and the quality of the items and the flavors, it would take a very long time for any competitor to potentially catch up to us,” he added.
An ad from Del Taco’s creative agency Skiver tells the story: