When it comes to Super Bowl commercials, no company has a better track record than Budweiser. The beer giant routinely shows a number of ads during the big game, and many of them have gone on to become the stuff of legend. Who could forget the frogs (and lizard), the clydesdales, and of course, the puppies. But where are the Budweiser Puppies in 2017? Will the adorable pooches make another appearance in Super Bowl LI?
Budweiser's 2014 Super Bowl ad, "Puppy Love," in which a puppy falls in love with a clydesdale, was a major heart-tugging sensation. The ad proved so popular in fact, that a sequel, "Lost Dog," was produced for the Super Bowl the following year. This time, the dog (who's still a puppy, and obviously played by a different dog) becomes lost and threatened by wolves, only to be rescued by his BFF horse. The two ads are arguably the most popular Budweiser has ever done, and according to a TiVo study in 2016, rank as the most popular ("Puppy Love") and second most popular ("Lost Dog") Super Bowl ads of all-time, by any company. So clearly, it seems like a no-brainer that Budweiser will want to bring their dog and pony show back, but will they?
Don't count on it. Despite the popularity of the puppy ads in both 2014 and 2015, the dogs were left out of Budweiser's 2016 Super Bowl campaign. Apparently, seeing cute animals that make you cry doesn't make you want to go out and buy beer. "We’ve done the puppy commercials on the Super Bowl for the last three years and everybody loves them," Jorn Socquet, the vice president of U.S. marketing for Bud's parent company, Anheuser-Busch InBev, told Bloomberg in 2016. “They have zero impact on beer sales. Those ads I wouldn’t air again because they don’t sell beer." Ouch. So what does Bud have in store for 2017?
The company has already released its main ad for the game, and the beer company appears to have actually gone political. The new ad focuses on immigration, telling the story of one of its founders — Adolphus Busch — who came to America from Germany with a dream of brewing beer. The ad shows how harshly he was treated upon arriving at our shores, and the hardships he went through, but he ultimately endured so he could live out his American Dream. Although Budweiser hasn't commented on the perceived political angle of the new campaign, many people have taken the ad as a stance against President Donald Trump's anti-immigration policies, such as his immigration ban and his desire to build a wall on the Mexican border, by showing that America wouldn't be the successful nation that it is without immigrants. Check it out below.
Budweiser's new immigration ad certainly isn't as cute as puppies, but it's a lot more important, and I'm glad to see the company using their platform to send a positive message in these trying times.