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Del Taco Drives a Successful Multi-Location Business Through Marketing Technology: Learn More


Over the past few years, localized marketing has shifted. The role of digital has increased significantly, causing multi-location marketers to rethink their marketing strategies. Marketing technology is more critical than ever and can help distinguish a multi-location business from the competition. Take Del Taco, for example. They continue to thrive as a successful QSR/fast-casual restaurant chain with the help of digital marketing.


SOCi’s Strategic Advisor of Enterprise Brands, Rob Reed, spoke with Erin Levzow, Del Taco’s Vice President of Marketing Technology, for an episode of his  Clicks to Bricks podcast to learn more. During the interview, which we recap below, Levzow explains how Del Taco survived the pandemic while strengthening its localized marketing efforts across business locations.


Breaking Down Del Taco and Its Marketing Efforts 


Del Taco currently has approximately 600 restaurants across 16 states. When the pandemic hit, Del Taco realized the need for a senior management position to focus solely on marketing technology. Levzow joined the team in the newly created marketing technology role designed to digitally transform Del Taco’s localized marketing efforts and adapt to the operational challenges of COVID-19. The pandemic forced restaurants to close their dining rooms nationwide and find new ways to serve their customers and drive loyalty.


Levzow says there’s always an opportunity during a crisis, but the tricky part is identifying the moment. While most Del Taco’s already had a drive-thru, the iconic quick-service plus concept quickly realized that many consumers don’t want to spend their time in a long line caused by dine-in restrictions throughout the pandemic. In response, Del Taco started partnering with delivery services to continue to get their food to their customers in new ways. Food delivery through apps like Favor, Postmates, and Uber Eats won’t stop any time soon. The pandemic just increased its popularity more quickly, adds Levzow.


As a multi-location business, it’s essential to find opportunities not only during difficult times but even in your day-to-day. If you’re consistently seeking to improve your localized marketing efforts, it will help you stay ahead of the competition. Let’s take a look at other ways Del Taco leveraged marketing technology to remain competitive throughout the pandemic.


A Look Into How Marketing Technology Propelled Del Taco Amid COVID-19


When Levzow joined Del Taco in September of 2020 they already had a solid marketing technology foundation. For instance, Del Taco had an app in place, but one of her tasks was to beef up its focus. When it comes to QSR and fast-casual restaurants, apps add value and convenience to the customer experience. For instance, the customer receives two free tacos when they sign up for Del Taco’s app, followed by personalized offers based on the customer’s behavior or what’s going on in the world. This added benefit is something consumers consider when deciding where to spend their money.


Levzow explains that Del Taco has also spent time thinking about how to market to their target audiences, particularly researching what motivates their consumers, whether it’s Taco Tuesday or just craving a taco on the way home from work. From this data, Del Taco comes up with creative ways to get in front of their customers and motivate them to return even more. This is again where marketing technology comes in. Effective marketing can take the emotion that consumers have and encourage them further. At the same time, technology can make it happen, whether it’s through your local listings, local social channels, or chatbots.


In the world of multi-location marketing, technology is always evolving. It’s your job to stay on top of it and implement it into your localized marketing efforts, and that’s where Del Taco has succeeded.


Localizing Marketing Technology is the Key to Success


Del Taco has always had a focus on localization. Del Taco’s business model is a mix between corporate-owned stores and franchisees. The franchisees are empowered to market at the local level, but Levzow expects this to grow further in the coming months and years. Del Taco currently provides its franchisees with resources needed to market at the local level and ensures a strong relationship between the corporate and local levels. For a multi-location business with hundreds of locations to be successful, marketers must build a strong sense of connection between corporate and franchisees, and Del Taco does precisely that.


When speaking about localized marketing, Levzow also emphasized the need for businesses to focus on performance marketing. To track success, companies should know how their localized marketing efforts are performing. Similarly, it is essential to set goals before launching marketing campaigns to track success.  For instance, a brand awareness campaign should drive real results in terms of new engagements and leads. In another light, businesses should be looking at the number of leads they’re losing and work to make that number as small as possible. Levzow plans to implement these goal-oriented strategies in her localized marketing efforts at Del Taco as well.


As you can see, Del Taco has reaped the rewards of localized marketing and marketing technology. As a multi-location marketer, you should take some of the lessons learned from Del Taco’s wins and implement them into your marketing efforts. You could become the next success story. For the full interview with Del Taco, check out the Clicks to Bricks multi-location marketing podcast. If you want more help creating a dominant localized marketing strategy, SOCi is here to help. SOCi is the all-in-one platform for your localized marketing needs and the central command for multi-location marketers. For more information on how SOCi can take your marketing efforts to the next level, request a demo today!