COM0014 – Chipotle corners the youth market

For this B2C case I decided to take a look at the restaurant chain Chipotle, who aside from cornering the taco and guac market, have recently drawn loads of consumer attention for their vibrant, quirky online engagement techniques. 

Chipotle is a chain of Mexican restaurants originating in the US but expanded to various countries across the world, primarily known for replicating the famous “Mission burrito” from SanFrancisco. The company is uniquely successful because in the wake of TikTok, a vastly popular social media website that engages consumers through short entertaining video clips, they’ve bit the bullet and invested in the platform with a fantastic return on investment, while most companies have shied away out of intimidation. 

Most of its content involves the TikTok trend of “challenges” which essentially asks users to replicate a video in their own style using a popular hashtag, usually accompanied by a particular song. Its first, #ChipotleLidFlip, generated over 240 million views on the platform. Its second, #GuacDance, was even more successful with 430 million video starts in six days. 

The company’s Twitter voice seems to follow this youthful, comical energy, offering tweets like: “Chicken bowls live rent-free in my mind”. The mention of something living “rent-free in my mind” has become its own trend in the comments sections of TikTok, so it’s very apparent this “spicy” fast-food chain is on the pulse of what’s fresh and fun and knows exactly how to connect with its audiences.

In addition to clever quips, the brand frequently posts freebies and food shots, also enjoyed by consumers. In creating this hip, funny content on TikTok, Chipotle has become relevant to younger consumers, and I’d say they’re succeeding in their B2C strategy with flying colours!

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