For Bud Light’s first Super Bowl ad in the post-Bud Knight era, the Anheuser-Busch InBev-owned brand enlisted rapper Post Malone (and his personified taste buds) to promote both the beer and Bud Light Seltzer, a new spiked seltzer label the brewing giant debuted a month earlier.
From Wieden & Kennedy New York, the brand’s agency of record, the 60-second ad is a case study in product recognition, showing the operators of Posty’s brain feuding over whether to get classic Bud Light or new Bud Light Seltzer while driving home the fact that there’s no beer in the latter. “What are the taste buds saying?” the chief brain controller asks an analyst after the rapper sips a can of Black Cherry. “Tastes great. No Bud Light, just hard seltzer with a hint of fruit flavor.”
The combined beer-seltzer spot was released on social media the Wednesday before Super Bowl LIV alongside another similar ad, with users asked to vote on which commercial they thought should run during the game. In the runner-up ad, Posty orders a Bud Light Seltzer at a bar and proceeds to confer with the shrunken operators of his nose, memory banks, stomach and even spleen to get the all-clear on a can of Mango.
Of course, just like the rapper himself, the microscopic men and women controlling his vital organs also sport face tattoos.
The humorous ad ran in the third quarter and anchored a scaled-down ad buy from AB InBev, which ran four 60-second ads during this year’s Super Bowl. Last year, by comparison, the company ran eight spots for five of its brands—Bud Light, Budweiser, Michelob Ultra, Stella Artois and Bon & Viv Spiked Seltzer—totalling five-and-a-half minutes during a game where airtime was selling for around $10 million per minute.
BRAND: Bud Light/Bud Light Seltzer
AGENCY: Wieden & Kennedy New York
QUARTER AIRED: Q3
SUPER BOWL: LIV