The marketing guru behind some of Budweiser’s biggest commercials is furious with the brand for destroying the beer company’s reputation. The creator of the famous “Talking Frogs” commercial from the Super Bowl in 1994 and the “Whassup?” commercial from 1999 has come forward to criticize Budweiser for its partnership with TikTok star Dylan Mulvaney, 26, who is a transgender woman.
When Bud Light decided to put Mulvaney’s face on cans, Robert Lachky, the marketing guru, said that all the hard work he had done making Budweiser the most popular beer company in America came crashing down.
“It took us 20 years to take Bud Light beer to the Number 1 beer in the country, and it took them one week to dismantle it,” Lachky said of InBev, Budweiser’s Belgian parent company, according to Daily Mail.
Now sales of Bud Light are plunging across the United States. In more conservative parts of the country, like the west north central and west south central states, including Texas and Missouri, sales have dropped by as much as twenty-five percent.
“Anheuser-Busch works with hundreds of influencers across our brands as one of many ways to authentically connect with audiences across various demographics,” according to a Bud Light spokesperson. “From time to time, we produce unique commemorative cans for fans and for brand influencers like Dylan Mulvaney. This commemorative can was a gift to celebrate a personal milestone and is not for sale to the general public.”
Lachky became an international icon during his time with Budweiser throughout the 1990s and 2000s, when he created some of the most iconic commercials of a generation. Lachky worked as a brand manager for Bug Light and created additional advertisements like the I Love You Man commercial from 1995. He also created the Real Men of Genius campaign, which was extremely popular in recent years.
Other experts are also shocked that Bud Light decided to put Mulvaney’s face on the beer cans.
“It’s a big thing to cause a drop in the stock price, a drop in sales,” said Andrew Gilman, founder, and CEO of CommCore, a consulting group with expertise in crisis communication. But those things “will probably recover,” he noted. “It’s another thing if, in fact, your employees are threatened.”
Gilman added, “If I have a consumer-facing product in America right now, I have to look at this and say, ‘Okay, what lessons can we take from it.’ And it does make you a little bit more cautious about anything that could cause threats to your employees and anything that would hurt your sales.”
Lachky left Anheuser-Busch in 2009, only a few months after InBev bought the American company. Although the European country completed rounds of layouts, Lachky left the company on his own.
“It’s self-inflicted,” he told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, adding that Anheuser-Busch has a “complete lack of corporate oversight, and it’s been that way since [InBev] took the company over.”