Coors Light, which has spent years connecting its brand to Rocky Mountain imagery, is getting domesticated. A new campaign called “Made to Chill,” lacks the snowy peaks and mountain streams that have filled previous ads. Instead of wildlife, the brand is leaning into home life. One ad shows a woman getting home from work, feeding the fish and opening the beer while removing her bra from under her shirt. Another spot shows a man showering with the beer.
Coors Light’s new ‘Made to Chill’ campaign breaks from its mountainous past
The campaign marks the first work from Leo Burnett, which won the account in May after MillerCoors cut ties with 72andSunny.
By using the word “chill,” Coors Light attempts to keep at least a reference to the cold positioning it has used for years, although it is much less pronounced than recent work, which used the brand’s classic “World’s Most Refreshing Beer” tagline.
“Cold has always been part of our brand DNA. And Coors Light’s mountain-cold refreshment is the perfect antidote to a world that won’t stop being on,” Ryan Reis, VP of marketing for the Coors Family of Brands, stated in a press release. “But in a world where millennial and Gen Z drinkers have more and more choices, we have one job to do: give them a new reason to reach for Coors Light.”
The creative pivot comes as the brewer continues to search for answers on how to resuscitate Coors Light, its largest and most important brand, which has been stuck in a years-long slump. Sales volume fell 5 percent in the first half of the year, according to Nielsen data recently cited by Beer Marketer’s Insights.
The new campaign marks the first significant move on the brand under Michelle St. Jacques, who took over as MillerCoors chief marketing officer earlier this year. The ads aim to recruit millennials and Gen Z drinkers with “a relatable” approach, according to a press release. “In an always on, hyper-connected world, younger generations are actively seeking ways to turn off for a moment,” the brewer stated, adding that the approach “champions the active choice to chill, sometimes showing occasions that are unexpected for beer advertising, such as enjoying a shower beer.”
Indeed, the ads lack the kind of partying and socialization often found in beer ads. But Coors Light’s attempt to position the brand as helping people unplug is not so revolutionary. Plenty of brands have taken the put-the-phone down, live-in-the-moment approach lately. For instance, Nissan had fun with the concept in a new ad for its Rogue SUV that shows armies of people buried in their phones.
Last year, Stella Artois launched a campaign called "joie de vivre," or "Joy of Beer," that spotlights a fictional setting where people are freed from modern distractions like smartphones.
Coors Light’s media buy includes Hulu and YouTube, in addition to TV.