It’s no secret that Super Bowl advertising slots are not only highly sought-after but also highly expensive.
The company behind the Budweiser beer brand – AB InBev – has been one of the biggest spenders in recent years.
This year, however, they have been on the receiving end of criticism… bizarrely from one of their own brands.
In its ‘Macro Beer’ advert, Budweiser proudly claims that it is not a beer ‘to be fussed over’ and that it is brewed for drinking ‘not dissecting’.
The ad ends with the snarky declaration ‘Let them drink their pumpkin peach ale, we’ll be brewing us some golden suds’.
But, in taking a shot at the more niche, “craft” beers on the market, AB InBev has seemingly turned fire own one of its own products.
The company’s recently-acquired Elysian Brewery has just come out with a pumpkin-peach ale called ‘Gourdgia on My Mind’.
Even if you argue that the advert was made before the beer, undermining craft beer is a rather strange move from a company which has just completed its fourth take-over of a craft beer brewery (Elysian follows the acquisitions of Goose Island, Blue Point, and 10 Barrel).
The takeover of these brands has already been met with scepticism from craft beer fans and the brewers themselves – why would AB InBev want to intensify this, and potentially scare off any future business partners?
Elysian are clearly furious, as this email from the co-founder shows.
Yes, building the Budweiser brand is important for AB InBev, but there could be a bad-tasting backwash from those who like their beer to have… a more distinct flavour.