Posts Tagged ‘Billy Mays’

Tailgate-Tested, 14th Floor-Rejected

December 21st, 2009

I’ve hesitated to rant about Bud Light’s sorry “Tailgate-Tested” ad campaign simply because criticizing it was such easy pickings. However, after seeing the latest execution from this exceptionally uninspired collection, I decided I had to get my feelings off my chest and onto my keyboard.

For starters, the entire campaign can be accused of poor taste by virtue of being a knock-off of commercials featuring the late Billy Mays. When Mr. Mays died unexpectedly several months ago, I thought Anheuser Busch would take the campaign off the air out of respect for the person the ads were trying to exploit, but sadly–for us as well as for Anheuser Busch–such was not the case.

The latest ad, “3-in-1 Condiment Gun”, takes bad taste to a new low within the first five seconds by having its unfunny spokesman ask, “Ever have trouble putting on a condiment?” (There’s nothing like condom humor when you’re trying to impress an audience!)

The rest of the commercial showcases a new invention that combines catsup, mustard and relish. (I’ll pause here until you stop laughing and slapping your knee.) From the demonstration of the device to the reaction of the studio audience, there is nothing in this commercial that made me smile, let alone laugh.

For years I’ve been critical of Bud Light ads for being funny but saying absolutely nothing to make you want to buy the beer. I love ads that wrap humor or entertainment around a compelling selling proposition, but Bud Light’s ads were always funny for the sake of being funny. (Case in point: “Beer Theft.”) In short, they were great entertainment but lousy marketing. Now, however, their ads ar.en’t even funny. In fact, I have yet to hear anyone anywhere make even one reference to the “Tailgate-Tested” ads.

The 3-in-1 Condiment Gun might have been “tailgate-tested and tailgate-approved,” but it’s hard to imagine that this ad campaign has passed any audience test with flying colors. And if it did, my advice to Anheuser Busch would be to find a new testing service.