The Super Bowl is killing Budweiser.

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Each year Anheuser Busch invests more and more money in Super Bowl ads. They are convinced it works. And why should they think otherwise? Over the past 10 years AB has earned the top spot more than any other brand in USA Today’s Super Bowl Ad Meter. 


How else does AB measure the success of these commercials? Here’s what they say: “Likeability” of the ads, increased sales and market share, “making our selling system excited,” and, lastly, “making consumers feel we are the leader in the category.” With the exception of sales and market share these metrics are drivel. Anheuser Busch beer sales are down. Bud Light is successful, but the rest of the portfolio is lagging. 

Do you know what really excites employees and distributors? Sales. Crazy sale. Perceptions of leadership, likeability and company excitement are second tier metrics for companies whose sales are dropping.  AB needs to do better job of blocking and tackling, focusing, and refining its core message.  It needs to stop spending 6 months each year on the Super Bowl. The Super Bowl is killing Budweiser. 

Here’s what I remember about Anheuser Busch Super Bowl advertising over the last 5 years: dalmations, clydedales, big fire trucks and snow. I’m not feeling it Mr. Busch.