Budweiser ran two ads for its flagship brand during the Super Bowl last night. The first was soft and cuddly, the much anticipated sequel to last year’s “Puppy Love” spot, “Lost Dog.” For the second, “Brewed The Hard Way,” also created by agency Anomaly, the brand went into attack mode.
The ad proclaims Budweiser to be “Proudly A Macro Beer” which is isn’t made to be “fussed over” but for a “crisp, smooth finish” before going on to attack craft breweries. Oddly enough, Budweiser seems to want to have it both ways as the ad celebrates the beer’s beechwood aging, before stating, “Let them drink their pumpkin peach ale, we’ll be brewing us some golden suds.”
It’s a bit odd that A-B InBev would take this route, a little over a week after purchasing Seattle craft brewery Elysian, known for its annual pumpkin beer festival (following a string of similar purchases including Blue Point, Goose Island and Redhook). Of course, most viewers will be unaware of that piece of hypocrisy, but the ad retains an air of desperation. It concludes by re-introducing the classic tagline, “This Bud’s For You,” which will anchor a new campaign for the brand, replacing “Grab Some Buds.”
While Budweiser is clearly nostalgic for the days when it wasn’t losing ground to a host of competitors with superior products, Budweiser Vice President Brian Perkins told AdAge that this is not a retro campaign. “‘This Bud’s For You’ was a very powerful tagline at one time and it’s still there in the psyche of American beer culture,” he said. “We can make millions of these per day. But this one’s for you and it’s the same quality standard and the same attention to detail as everything else.”