Bud Light’s woke controversy is changing the landscape of advertising.
The embattled beer brand is becoming a cautionary tale.
And Bud Light executives are going all-in on this Super Bowl Hail Mary in a desperate bid to save its sinking ship.
The Super Bowl is the biggest day of the year for advertisers as some continue to buy into the idea that the Big Game’s commercial breaks are an event in and of themselves.
The boycott that broke out against Bud Light after the brand partnered with controversial woke extremist Dylan Mulvaney is serving as a warning to this year’s Super Bowl advertisers.
Super Bowl commercials this year are avoiding woke extremism and radical left-wing politics.
Corporations are playing it safe this year, acknowledging that many working-class Americans are struggling with the skyrocketing cost of living under President Joe Biden’s economic policies.
“Life generally is more difficult for consumers,” Oreo Vice President of U.S. operations Michelle Deignan told Variety. “They are more constrained.”
Oreo is running a Super Bowl commercial featuring reality star Kris Jenner.
“I think you’ll see those brands that lean into nostalgia, humor, emotion at the Super Bowl … those brands will resonate with the consumer,” Deignan added.
Corporations are playing it safe during major marketing campaigns this year, according to Northwestern University marketing professor Tim Calkin, who has studied Super Bowl commercials for years.
Because of the rise of social media, corporations realize an ad can “manage to annoy people or cause a backlash. Nobody wants to put their career on the line with a certain piece of Super Bowl footage. There is a huge incentive to be cautious.”
Bud Light’s Belgian parent company, Anheuser-Busch InBev, pushed a left-wing political message during previous Super Bowl commercials.
In 2017, Budweiser ran a pro-illegal immigration ad during the Big Game that was an obvious reaction to former President Donald Trump taking office at the time.
This year, Anheuser-Busch is returning to a more traditional advertising campaign for the Super Bowl after the company was decimated by the Bud Light boycott.
The company is running a commercial for Michelob Ultra that features Argentine soccer star Lionel Messi and friends partying in a beach shack.
Bud Light’s Super Bowl commercial will feature former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning, musician Post Malone, and UFC President Dana White in an ad that introduces the character of Bud Light Genie.
The embattled beer brand is returning to its marketing roots by using humor and celebrities after going all-in on woke extremism nearly finished it off for good.
With angry customers still boycotting Bud Light after its woke debacle, they could be ready to put the Bud Light Genie back in the bottle.