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Thursday, August 2, 2012

After These Messages

In which the bossman reflects on beer in advertising, then shares some of his favorite "commercials" (see below) with readers of The Buzz. 

By Steve Siciliano

Because I watch a fair amount of televised sports I’m subjected to a fair amount of mass marketed beer advertising. Perhaps “subjected” isn’t an entirely accurate expression since I certainly have the option to reach for the remote and switch to another channel during commercial breaks. But this I seldom do and maybe it’s simply because I’m lazy. On the other hand, perhaps it’s due to some weird, innate desire for self-flagellation—the sort of thing that makes you see how long you can hold your hand over a flame, or pick at a scab, or probe with your tongue at a toothache.

Before I go on I must state that I have an antipathy for a good percentage of television commercials in general. While some are creative productions that succeed at pitching their products without insulting the intelligence of the viewer, I feel the vast majority are silly, irritating, and/or just plain stupid. I want to further state that despite the fact that our store is primarily a purveyor of craft beer, I harbor no antagonism for the mass marketed brands and I’m not ashamed of the fact that I occasionally consume them. I just shake my head sometimes at the inane ways that the mega-corporate entities choose to promote their products.

What I’m referring to, of course, are commercials that tout supposedly unique brewing processes that are recognized as shams by anyone with a modicum of beer savvy. And then there are the ads that focus on packaging and the purported ways that cans and bottles can enhance the beer drinking experience.

I recognize, of course, that the purpose of advertising is to keep the brand in the minds of the consumers and this is even more important when there is little or no difference among the competing products. But when the ad campaigns sink to the level of ridiculousness that we of late have been seeing, it’s enough to force even the laziest man to reach for the remote.

Craft breweries do a miniscule amount of television advertising, but when they do it’s interesting to note the different approaches that are taken. The following TV commercials are for Breckenridge Brewery. Enjoy.

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