I saw something interesting for the first time at that reception Wednesday night — Bud Light in dark red, or perhaps I should say garnet, cans. That was a new one on me and the ad folks I spoke to that night. I asked the guy working the bar what was up with the cans, and he didn’t know; it was the first time he’d seen them, too.
Someone speculated that it was a school-colors thing. That someone was right, as the WSJ reported Friday morning:
Dozens of colleges are up in arms over a new Anheuser-Busch marketing campaign that features Bud Light beer cans emblazoned with local schools’ team colors.
Many college administrators contend that the promotions near college campuses will contribute to underage and binge drinking and give the impression that the colleges are endorsing the brew. Though some schools aren’t interfering with the promotion, others are demanding that the sales be stopped. With students returning to campuses and the fall football season approaching, the “Fan Cans” are also renewing the debate over the role of beer makers in encouraging college drinking.
Anheuser-Busch responds that the campaign is aimed only at fans who can drink legally and that it has long supported efforts to fight alcohol abuse. It notes that the cans don’t bear any school’s name or logo. And it says it will drop the campaign near any college that makes a formal complaint…
Then WIS did a story on them last night.
Actually, I thought the cans I saw — which were technically muted red and cream, not garnet and black — looked pretty good, aesthetically speaking (way, WAY better than those tacky LSU cans). Picture it away from the blue carton, which kind of takes away from the effect (I shot this pics on my phone at Food Lion).
But then, I didn’t see them and think “Gamecocks.” If I had, I would have been less enchanted. As y’all know, I take a dim view of anything that encourages kids to drink — something I know that not all of y’all agree with me on.
Maybe this suggests a new standard for legal drinking: How about if we pass a law that if you’re impressionable enough to buy a beer because it has your school colors on it, you should be banned from drinking forever?
Anyway, what do y’all think?