Yo quiero Taco Bell!
Two young men ride in an older BMW car while listening to 80's music and happily munching on fast food from Taco Bell. Above the back seat sits a bobbing plastic dog. Suddenly, the young men look in their rear-view mirror and to their surprise realize that the plastic dog has been replaced by a little pointy-eared Chihuahua with bulging eyes. This dog is very much alive, and he will do just about anything to get his little canine teeth around some of that delicious food. In his quest for ultimate satisfaction, the Chihuahua speaks out, "Yo quiero Taco Bell!" translated into, "I want Taco Bell!" It was a cute dog, whose catchy phrases like this one had captured the imagination and excitement of many Taco Bell consumers. Their marketing campaign was a success because the dog was able to connect with their targeted market of young adults who primary thinks about food, sex, and parties. Every new commercial was widely discussed across school courtyards. At one point, the dog's catch phrases had even become a part of human vernacular. Taco Bell achieved this level of success by connecting their advertising character with the audience through humor and satire reflected in the stereotypes coming out of the quasi-Mexican image presented in the commercials and by exploiting the Chihuahua's cute image to appeal to the viewers. After the launch of the first Chihuahua commercial and its rapid cute image appeal to the broad based market, it became apparent that Taco Bell's marketing campaign was right on the mark. The dog, named Dinky, characterized by its bulging eyes, innocent expressions, tiny size, irresistible Spanish accent, and its catchy phrases like, "Here lizard, lizard, lizard" and "I think I need a bigger box" was simply adorable. Dinky's image was trustworthy; after all, a dog is a man's best friend. In turn, the voice of Taco Bell, shadowed by the cute advertising character that people saw through their television tube,...
Cited: Omi, Michael. "In Living Color: Race and American Culture" – Signs of Life in the USA. eds. Sonia Maasik & Jack Solomon. Boston: Bedford, 2002.
Rivenburg, Roy. "Snap! Crackle! Plot!" – Signs of Life in the USA. eds. Sonia Maasik & Jack Solomon. Boston: Bedford, 2002.
Solomon, Jack. "Masters of Desire: The Culture of American Advertising." – Signs of Life in the USA. eds. Sonia Maasik & Jack Solomon. Boston: Bedford, 2002.
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