Now we know what Anheuser-Busch and Anomaly are up to.
As Ad Age reported last week, the brewer has begun working with the independent shop as it seeks to revive its Budweiser brand. Today the agency and brewer told us Anomaly created the "Grab Some Buds" TV ads that began running this past weekend. And apparently Anomaly is quite proud of its new relationship, having posted Bud bottles on the front of its web page this morning.
The campaign is timed with the brewer's National Happy Hour initiative, which will kick off Wednesday when A-B begins handing out samples of Budweiser at bars and restaurants. That Bud chose Anomaly for such a significant campaign is a downer for Omnicom Group's DDB, which has been the lead agency for Budweiser in the U.S. since the mid-1990s and global agency of record for the brand since late 2009. (Although it should be noted that isn't the first time Bud has gone with another agency.)
The new ad -- aimed at younger beer drinkers -- includes no dialogue, featuring scenes of folks readying a cookout, a baseball field, a rock concert and a grill out and culminates with a young couple kissing at a bar.
The giveaway comes as Bud is mired in a long-term sales decline. Harry Schuhmacher, publisher of Beer Business Daily, said the brewer has "nothing to lose" by handing out free beer.
"It costs money, but it's not real expensive," he said. "They've already generated a lot of press."
There's one complication: Laws in some states prohibit A-B from publicizing where to get the free samples. The promotions for the most part are being handled by wholesalers and retailers, although A-B plans to send out employees from its St. Louis office to help run Wednesday's event. And if you're wondering: The freebies will continue beyond Wednesday, with an expected 500,000 beers eventually given out, ranging from 6 ounces to 12 ounces per sample.