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Miller Rolls Out Ads Focused on Direct Taste Comparisons

MILWAUKEE -- Miller has unveiled its latest collection of television spots further zeroing in on direct taste comparisons between Miller Lite and Bud Light and between Miller Genuine Draft and Budweiser.

“When it comes down to what really matters to beer drinkers, the message of taste beats the message of ‘freshness’ every time,” said Bob Mikulay, executive vice president of marketing for Miller Brewing Co. “American consumers realize that all American-brewed beers are fresh.”

The new ads are the latest iteration of Miller’s year-old “Good Call” campaign. In each spot, beer drinkers line up outside an Anheuser-Busch brewery to use a megaphone to inform Budweiser that they chose a Miller beer in a blind taste test, while pointing out that all American-brewed beers are fresh.

Last week in Washington, D.C., and Orlando, Miller previewed the new spots to gatherings of its distributor partners. “The reaction of the distributors has been very encouraging,” said Mikulay. “They know the taste proposition resonates with beer drinkers, and they know that A-B distributors do not feel the same way about the freshness concept.”

Anheuser-Busch has rolled out its plans to continue supporting freshness with advertising featuring taglines like “Freshness Rules” and “Fresh Beer Tastes Better.”

“You can’t blame them for trying to avoid the direct taste comparison,” said Mikulay.
Mikulay confirmed that Miller would raise its target for on-premise taste challenges to five million consumers by the end of calendar year 2005. Since the beginning of 2004, Miller and its distributor partners have engaged more than one million consumers in such sampling efforts.

“It’s been a very powerful tool really bringing home the important differences between our beers and theirs,” said Mikulay. “In fact, in terms of actually prompting reconsideration, it’s been one of the most effective marketing investments the beer industry has seen in many years.”

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