A hard cider brand owned by MillerCoors is taking an apparent shot at Anheuser-Busch InBev's Stella Artois in advance of today's U.S.-Belgium World Cup match.
Stella, which is the No. 1 Belgian beer in the world according to A-B InBev, sells a cider that it calls Stella Artois Cidre with the "r" and "e" flipped in cider. Smith & Forge, which launched earlier this year, does not name specifically name Stella in the ad, which is by WPP's Cavalry and will run online today and get some paid support. But the the spot (above) is clearly trying to earn some attention by subtly taking on Stella while making a patriotic pitch.
"Cidre" is a European pronunciation of cider, according to A-B InBev. While Cidre was developed and initially launched in Europe, the version sold in the U.S. is actually made stateside, in Baldwinsville, N.Y.
It remains to be seen how many people will even see the ad, which has a limited shelf life that will seemingly expire after today's game. Also, will people even get the reference? Cider brands, while growing, still have a lot less awareness than beers. Then again, MillerCoors might have more to gain than lose considering that the brewer likely made a limited investment in the spot, which makes use of the brand's ongoing campaign featuring a mutton-chopped character named Cornelius.
For its part, A-B InBev, which is an official World Cup sponsor, today released the following digital ad for Budweiser in advance of today's match featuring the brand's Clydesdales.
The ad, which is by Anomaly, borrows a concept that was considered for a Super Bowl ad earlier this year, before the brand went with the highly popular puppy spot and another ad called "Hero's Welcome" that had a military theme.