Anheuser-Busch (A-B), and Boston Beer launched new advertisements for their lagers this month. The tagline for Sam Adams’ new ads for Sam ‘76, which debuted on YouTube this week, is “I can taste my beer.” In one ad, Brewbound reports, a man wakes up his female companion to tell her, “I can taste my beer.” In another, a woman tells her male date she can taste the beer on his lips. She ordered what appears to be a mixed drink.
A-B, for its part, reimagined its late-’90s, early-2000s-era “Real Men of Genius” campaign for Bud Light, repositioning it “Internet Heroes of Genius.” It partners with Post Malone and Barstool Sports’ “Pardon My Take” podcast, both of which have worked with Bud Light previously. (For those unacquainted with Barstool, its internet track record is rich with allegations of misogyny and cyberbullying.) The ads will appear on digital radio, streaming, and social media platforms.
In other words, Big Beer’s medium has been recalibrated for the digital age, but its messaging is stuck in the past. Both of these new advertisements center on straight white men, overlooking many other consumer demographics already drinking beer and waiting to see themselves reflected on a screen of any size. Advertising is tricky business, I know, but beer can do better.
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Two Roads Hard Seltzer Is Here
Two Roads Brewing is the latest to ride the spiked seltzer wave with H2Roads. Instead of “natural flavors,” however, the Stratford, Conn., brewery is taking an actually natural approach by using real fruit.
“Using extracts or processed flavoring agents was a non-starter for us,” Phil Markowski, Two Roads’ master brewer, said in a press release. “We wanted to avoid an artificial flavor from additives and offer an alternative to folks who prefer a natural tasting product. Real fruit was the only way to achieve this. The natural byproduct of real fruit is real color, which all of our seltzers will have.”
Spiked seltzers are so hot right now. In a recent panel tasting at VinePair, one of the only turnoffs for many of us was artificial-tasting variants. I’ll take 100 calories of real fruit over 0 calories of flavoring any day.