GUEST HOST: David Menzies.
In light of recent events in the beer world, it's worth revisiting the Schlitz beer saga from the 1970s as detailed in the book, The Misfortune 500.
Once the second best-selling beer in the U.S., Schlitz's management disastrously altered the brewing process in a cost-saving move.
This decision, driven by greed, resulted in a rapid decline in sales and the eventual near-collapse of the brand.
This story is reminiscent of Anheuser-Busch's recent marketing missteps. Unlike Schlitz, Anheuser-Busch's motivation was not greed, but a misguided attempt at virtue-signaling.
The Dylan Mulvaney Bud Light debacle has led to plummeting sales and a significant decrease in the company's share value.
Both cases serve as cautionary tales for the beer industry, illustrating the importance of staying true to a brand's roots and avoiding unnecessary controversies.
The appointment of Dylan Mulvaney, a trans-woman, as a brand ambassador for Bud Light has been met with widespread backlash.
This marketing decision seems to have prioritized virtue-signaling and wokeness over the actual desires of Bud Light's target audience, leading to a boycott that continues to gain momentum.
Anheuser-Busch's attempts at damage control have only made matters worse. Bud Light's marketing VP, Alissa Heinerscheid, tried to explain the reasoning behind the company's decision, but her comments only fueled the fire.
The company's subsequent patriotic ad campaign, featuring the Clydesdale horses and evoking 9/11 imagery, was widely criticized as exploitative and tone-deaf.
In an effort to remedy the situation, Anheuser-Busch CEO Brendan Whitworth released a statement, but it failed to provide a satisfactory apology or explanation. Instead, it left consumers feeling unsatisfied and questioning the company's intentions.
The Bud Light fiasco has placed Anheuser-Busch in a precarious position, with critics on both the left and the right. While some argue that the company has not done enough to stand up against anti-trans sentiment, others maintain that it has caved to political correctness and wokeness. This has led to a wide-ranging boycott, leaving many to wonder who is still drinking Bud Light.
The ongoing Bud Light controversy is not only a modern-day parallel to the Schlitz disaster, but also a reflection of the broader challenges facing the beer industry.
As companies grapple with evolving consumer preferences, they must be careful not to alienate their core customer base in pursuit of broader appeal.
In the end, the Bud Light backlash can be seen as a turning point in the ongoing struggle against political correctness and wokeism.
The strong negative response to the company's marketing decisions demonstrates a growing resistance to the pervasive influence of these ideologies, which many feel have gone too far.
As the beer industry moves forward, it would do well to learn from these mistakes and focus on delivering quality products that resonate with their target audience, rather than getting caught up in the ever-changing winds of cultural politics.
GUEST: Gordan G. Chang on the latest regarding the recent arrests over Chinese Police stations and when is Canada going to follow suit?