Tecate Sings Another ‘Anthem’ for Hard-Working Men

Building on last year’s “Anthem” campaign, Mexican beer brand Cerveza Tecate has unleashed a series of spots linking its bold taste with masculinity.

Tecate, which is distributed by Heineken USA, has a strong following among Mexican male immigrants, per the company. It changed its tagline last year from “Flavor with character” to “With character” to better connect with that target. TV, print, outdoor and radio ads running last year showed Tecate drinkers tackling life’s challenges with unusual gusto.

New ads, via lead agency and Hispanic marketing shop Adrenalina, New York, started running this month and reprise that theme. However, the new campaign, dubbed “Anthem 2,” takes on a more dynamic storytelling approach. (Previous ads consisted of a voiceover narrating a series of vignettes.)

One spot opens with a real-life butcher carrying a freshly skinned cow on his back. Other variations include a line cook, at the request of his superior, lifting a pot full of hot spaghetti with his bare hands. Another shows a Mexican worker departing with his hard-earned wages at the wire transfer counter after looking at a picture of his mother.

The ads will run on all Hispanic networks, including Univision and Telemundo. There also will be radio spots and an out-of-home component.

The company did not disclose ad spend for the campaign, but Tecate brand director Carlos Boughton said this will be the bulk of the effort through Q1 2010. (The company spent $21 million in U.S. measured media last year, excluding online, per Nielsen.)


Boughton said the new ads aim to connect with consumers emotionally by demonstrating that besides the financial crisis, Mexican immigrants of all ages have toiled with struggles of their own all this time. “The work that you do is both difficult, but also so relevant, so important and extremely tough, that very few people can actually do what you do,” he said.

In a Millward Brown test with consumers, the research agency found the ad ranked in the top 10 percent of all Spanish ads ever tested, as well as the top 6 and 2 percent, respectively, of all ads ever tracked for enjoyment and believability.

“The crux of our creative is, ‘Yes, the beer has a bolder taste,’ but if you look at the consumer who drinks this type of beer and the product, the brand itself—all of these things together have character,” Adrenalina president Manuel Wernicky said. “You can’t escape the news on Wall Street and the hardships right now, but if you look at where these immigrants come from, their best friend, the one that they’ve always known, has been one called ‘crisis.’”

Beer sales overall have been flat. The category was up 0.5 percent in 2008, per Benj Steinman, editor of Beer Marketer’s Insights. Tecate’s sales have been doing well in recent years, with a 9 percent increase as of 2008. Steinman said much of that comes from the fact that the brand’s advertising is extremely target audience-focused, as well as the product’s affordable price point.