The boycott of its brands that quickly followed its Dylan Mulvaney marketing partnership has proven disastrously bad for Anheuser-Busch InBev’s stock price and brands. While the parent company has lost billions in the stock market and been repeatedly downgraded by analysts, sales of its brands have been seriously cut.
For example, sales of Bud Light are down about 25 percent compared to this time last year, Budweiser is down more than 11 percent, Mich Ultra is down nearly 7 percent, and Busch Light and Natural Light are both down around 5 percent.
Well, now the brand is again attempting to recover by releasing a wishy washy statement meant to appease conservatives without actually apologizing or promising to not release ads that are the opposite of what its customers want to see again.
This one was released on June 15, 2023 by Anheuser Busch America CEO Brendan Whitworth, who used to work in the now-woke CIA. The statement, titled “Anheuser-Busch Announces Support For Frontline Employees And Wholesaler Partners,” said that the beer is for “everyone” and then went on to state other meaningless truisms and trivialities in an attempt to get people buying it again without actually apologizing.
In the statement, Whitworth first noted the obvious fact that the past two months have been very, very bad for Bud Light and those involved in the production, distribution, and selling of it, saying, “We recognize that over the last two months, the discussion surrounding our company and Bud Light has moved away from beer, and this has impacted our consumers, our business partners, and our employees.”
He then tried to get conservatives and leftists willing to buy it again, saying, “We are a beer company, and beer is for everyone.”
The statement then went on to list the initiatives the company is taking to keep those deleteriously impacted by its Mulvaney decision afloat for now. First came the pledge to help protect the jobs of those hit by the boycott: “First, we are investing to protect the jobs of our frontline employees.” Next came the pledge to help keep those who sell it afloat so that they can keep their employees around: “Second, we are providing financial assistance to our independent wholesalers to help them support their employees.” And finally came the pledge to launch advertising that was focused on what customers like about the beer: “Third, to all our valued consumers, we hear you. Our summer advertising launches next week, and you can look forward to Bud Light reinforcing what you’ve always loved about our brand – that it’s easy to drink and easy to enjoy.” We’ll see what wokeness they insert into that ad.
In any case, the statement was devoid of an apology and in that respect echoed Whitworth’s first statement, in which he said, among other things, “We never intended to be part of a discussion that divides people. We are in the business of bringing people together over a beer.”
Ignored there is that they did divide people with an ad that anyone could have guessed would be divisive, and so needed to either apologize and back off or go all in on it, as now Bud Light has ceded its neutral cultural ground.
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