Big brewers have been lamenting losing drinkers to wine and spirits for years. But it doesn't get more direct than this pitch for a new MillerCoors brand: "Stop Your Wine-ing."
That's the kicker in one of several new ads for the brew, called Two Hats, a fruity light beer MillerCoors is debuting to keep more young adult drinkers in the fold. The spot literally knocks wine out by showing a bowling ball sliding along a bar crushing several bottles of white wine.
The effort is part of a digital-only campaign by Mekanism for the brew, which MillerCoors is touting as "good cheap beer." The brewer foreshadowed Two Hats last year, saying the brew would be designed to win over 21-to 24-year olds. It's a key demographic for brewers, but one they have had a harder time hanging onto as wine and spirits brands dial up their marketing and creep into places beer once dominated, like sports stadiums.
Beer as a proportion of the alcohol consumed by 21-to-27-year-olds fell to 43 percent last year from 65 percent in 2006, according to a presentation delivered last year by Anheuser-Busch InBev at an industry meeting. AB InBev sought to take on the challenge last year with an ad for its Michelob Ultra brew declaring that the low-calorie beer contained "55% fewer carbs than a glass of white wine."
MillerCoors' Two Hats campaign plays up its cheap price, $5 for a six-pack, with quick online videos that seek to underscore its affordability with the phrase, "Wait, What?" Affordability used to be beer's calling card, but the craft beer movement has conditioned buyers to pay upwards of $9 or more for six-packs of what are often fuller-bodied beers that go down more slowly.
The craft beer surge has eaten in to the market share of mainstream light beer brands such as Miller Lite and Bud Light. MillerCoors and AB InBev have responded by acquiring their own craft beer brands. But the Two Hats launch appears positioned more to go after wine and spirits than craft beer competition. The new brand checks in at 4.2 percent alcohol-by-volume, which matches the content found in most light beers. The first varieties come in lime and pineapple flavors.
"We want to recruit this new generation of drinkers, who generally find current beer options to be outdated or expensive, and build their preference for beer in the long term," says Sofia Colucci, senior director of innovation at MillerCoors.
Mekanism created the campaign along with its in-house social media agency, Epic Signal, and its in-house production company, Sister. Here are a couple more ads from the campaign: