So, Bud Light, the shining star of beverage brilliance, decided to dabble in the world of woke marketing. Last year, they briefly danced with Dylan Mulvaney, a transgender influencer, and oh boy, did they need a lifeline after that fiasco.
Now, as a retired marketing professor, I entertained the idea of helping them out with a new slogan. But then I thought, “Not a chance!” These folks managed to insult their prime market with a trans campaign and topped it off by verbally disparaging their own customers. Bravo, Bud Light, bravo.
Enter Bill Gates, or more accurately, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Trust, swooping in with a $95 million investment, acquiring 1.7 million shares of A-B stock. A bold move, considering Bud Light reported a staggering $395 million in lost revenues tied directly to the backlash against their Mulvaney-themed marketing.
CNN likes to call it “transphobic backlash” and blame it on the “right-wing media and anti-trans commentators.” Whatever floats your boat, CNN.
As expected, the Gates Foundation’s investment hasn’t been the financial genius move they hoped for. A-B stock took a hit, dropping almost 2 percent since the purchase and down 7 percent for the year. Lesson of the day, class: go woke, go broke.
Now, if, by some miracle, Bud Light manages to redeem itself and claw back some sales, just remember – every sip of that refreshing beverage is contributing to Bill’s foundation. Because who doesn’t want to fund that crazy outfit?
Let’s ponder another head-scratcher: which was worse – Bud Light’s ill-fated LGBT theme or Procter & Gamble linking Gillette to the idea of toxic masculinity? It won’t be on the test, but seriously, what’s wrong with these people?
Former President Trump chimed in, declaring A-B as not a woke company but a great American brand that made a mistake and deserves a second chance. Sorry, Mr. President, but promises and relationships with customers matter. Bud Light’s non-apology just doesn’t cut it.
As we navigate the world of once-great American brands, let’s remember the expectations we once had. And while Bill Gates throws money into Bud Light, Trump reportedly holds up to $5 million in A-B stock. Oh, the tangled web of investments and beverage missteps. Cheers to marketing brilliance, or lack thereof.