Budweiser, the beer brand made by Anheuser-Busch InBev, has successfully built consumer engagement through “inspiring ordinary people to do extraordinary things” with its marketing.

Marcel Marcondes, US chief marketing officer at Anheuser-Busch InBev, discussed this subject at an event co-hosted by the brewer with Cannes Lions, MediaLink and WARC, three companies that are owned by Ascential.

“This is how we’re trying to change things because it’s all about inspiring ordinary people to do extraordinary things,” he said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: Budweiser’s human-focused advertising strategy.)

“And this is how people understand that we’re human and that we care … That has a tremendous impact in our view, but it’s a totally different path to get there.”

One example was a recent ad starring Dwyane Wade, the NBA icon, that featured no on-court action, but instead featured people who Wade has assisted and inspired, both personally and through his philanthropic work.

“This is all about a basketball player, but with no basketball game included,” explained Marcondes. “This is beer content without having a beer on screen.”

Another example was Budweiser using its Super Bowl spot in 2018 to highlight its efforts to provide water to victims of natural disasters in various parts of America.

Whether supporting military veterans or championing female equality on International Women’s Day, this approach has become a powerful means for Budweiser to correct misperceptions that it is a mass-produced brand lacking in humanity.

“We spent so much time trying to develop quality campaigns for Budweiser, until we realised that was not the problem,” Marcondes said.

“You can talk about ingredient X and Z, and the production process, and everything. The real issue here was that people used to see Budweiser as a big, fat manufacturer that was not human. If we don’t care about people, [they assume] we don’t care about what we brew.

“So, rather than talking about the product, we started to talk about people. And our corporate idea became, ‘We will celebrate ordinary people doing extraordinary things’. Period. Because this is how this brand was created since the 1800s.”

Sourced from WARC