Bud Light VP Claimed Brand Was ‘Out of Touch,’ Needed ‘Inclusivity’ to Attract Young People

TND - April 11, 2023 6:26 am

Anheuser-Busch InBev, the brewer behind Budweiser and Bud Light, said that U.S. revenues fell as American consumers continue to shift away from domestic lagers and toward crafts beers and wine and spirits. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Bud Light Vice President of Marketing Alissa Heinerscheid is facing backlash for calling the brand’s past marketing efforts “out of touch” and “fratty.”

Heinerscheid’s comments surfaced just days after Bud Light began facing criticism over its decision to partner with controversial transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.

Mulvaney, a biological male who gained notoriety for a “365 Days of Girlhood” campaign showcasing Mulvaney’s transition from male to female over the course of a year, has become a popular target for major brands like Bud Light and Nike.

Mulvaney recently marked one full year in transition, which Bud Light helped celebrate by creating a can with Mulvaney’s face on it amid the company’s larger Pride campaign “celebrat[ing] everyone’s identity.”

Ultimately, Mulvaney created a social media post showing off the limited edition can, as well as one promoting Bud Light during March Madness for Mulvaney’s nearly 2 million followers to see. Another social media ad from Mulvaney pictured the trans influencer soaking in a bathtub full of bubbles and drinking Bud Light.

“I’m a businesswoman, I had a really clear job to do when I took over Bud Light, and it was ‘This brand is in decline, it’s been in a decline for a really long time, and if we do not attract young drinkers to come and drink this brand there will be no future for Bud Light,'” Heinerscheid said during a recent episode of the “Make Yourself at Home” podcast.

We had this hangover, I mean, Bud Light had been kind of a brand of fratty, kind of out-of-touch humor and it was really important that we had another approach,” Heinerscheid added.

Heinerscheid explained during the podcast how she felt her mandate to “evolve” and “elevate” the Bud Light brand meant “inclusivity” and “shifting the tone.”

“It means having a campaign that’s truly inclusive and feels lighter, and brighter, and different, and appeals to women and to men,” Heinerscheid continued. “And representation is sort of at the heart of evolution — you got to see people who reflect you in the work.”

Despite Heinerscheid’s noble intentions to help Bud Light evolve and grow, the brand partnership with Mulvaney led to numerous celebrities and others calling for people to boycott the beer brand.

READ MORE: “After Kid Rock, another star musician boycotts Bud Light over transgender ads”

Anheuser-Busch, Bud Light’s parent company, eventually came out in defense of the move to partner with Mulvaney.

“Anheuser-Busch works with hundreds of influencers across our brands as one of many ways to authentically connect with audiences across various demographics,” a spokesperson for Anheuser-Busch told Fox News. “From time to time we produce unique commemorative cans for fans and for brand influencers, like Dylan Mulvaney. This commemorative can was a gift to celebrate a personal milestone and is not for sale to the general public.”

The National Desk (TND) has reached out to Anheuser-Busch multiple times for comment on this story, but has never heard back. If a response is received, this story will be updated.


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