Bud Light Says BBDO Wrote Controversial Bottle Tagline

By Patrick Coffee 

In case you missed it, Bud Light found itself in a bit of hot water yesterday after a reddit post first noted by Consumerist and then covered by every single news organization out there (including The New York Times and, yes, even TODAY) heaped criticism on a single line that appeared on some of its bottles:

“The perfect beer for removing ‘no’ from your vocabulary for the night”

reddit bud light

Pic via reddit

Of course the company did not in any way mean to encourage sexual misbehavior with this copy, but once the story hit BuzzFeed it was damage control time.

After an initial period of silence, our sister site PRNewser got parent company AB InBev’s communications chief to respond via Twitter:

This was part of a longer statement issued to various media outlets:

“The Bud Light Up for Whatever campaign, now in its second year, has inspired millions of consumers to engage with our brand in a positive and light-hearted way. In this spirit, we created more than 140 different scroll messages intended to encourage spontaneous fun. It’s clear that this message missed the mark, and we regret it. We would never condone disrespectful or irresponsible behavior.”

For context, the client announced back in February that it planned to run “a variety of messages on 12-ounce bottles to inspire consumers to try new experiences” as part of its ongoing #UpForWhatever campaign. This line was one of those messages.

Initially, we were told that Bud Light’s creative AOR BBDO was not involved because it does not work on packaging for the client. However, AB InBev later released this statement:

“BBDO is the creative agency for this UFW campaign, including all bottle scroll messages. We have an extensive review process and this label should not have made it through. It’s regrettable. This particular scroll will no longer be produced.”

So the client effectively blamed its own internal review process for allowing the message to receive approval but did note that BBDO worked on the creative behind the project.

Recalling all the bottles that feature this particular message will be impossible, and AB InBev is still in damage control mode: it has not been active on social media for the past two days.