Monday 5 July 2010

Responsible advertising. Or just clever advertising?: Bud - designate a driver

I saw this add for the first time this weekend.

I must confess that until the final frames, I didn't twig that it was for a beer brand - to be honest, I was drawn in by all the pretty people dancing.

It does take a brave, and strong (!), brand to be comfortable to not only omit any direct reference to using the product (i.e. drinking beer - in fact the point of the ad is the complete opposite, it's that he isn't drinking any) but also to refrain from any mention of the product until the final few frames - I can't even make out any Buds on the bar or in the background.

Clever really.

It positions the brand as cool (trendy club, pretty people), confident (he's content being Des as he's having a good time anyway) and responsible (he doesn't even have "just the one then").  I'm sure that others can apply a few more layers of marketing spiel to my critique but I'll leave it there.


  1. Hey there! I'm so glad I stumbled across this post as I was thinking just the same about Budweiser's latest ad! I wrote something on it on my blog (, much to the same effect. The ad makes me respect Budweiser as a brand. A pretty good move in my book! Shelley

  2. Hi Shelly,

    Exactly - it's a good move for Bud and they are fortunate that they have the brand positioning that allows them the leeway to do this. I'm not sure that Carling would have been able to do it in the same way...

    It's also a nice departure from the omnipresent drink aware statement/URL on ads.