The ‘Let There Be Beer’ campaign is undergoing an evolution to become the ‘There’s a Beer for That’ campaign. If you aren’t familiar with the former, it was a collaborative beer industry project to promote beer itself, rather than any specific beer. It had all the optimism and expertise of the British approach to the war in 1914, with the hope that by Christmas of 2014 all of Britain would be drinking lager again. Instead, the campaign effectively shelled its own troops, raised the ire of the beer writing/blogging/drinking community, and spent the rest of the war hiding in its trench.
But that’s all behind us now. The new campaign has pumped £10 million into the newly rethought approach. Here’s a video that will be aired around early November alongside Downton Abbey:
Sorry, that appears to be a McDonald’s advert. I seem to get that and the beer commercial mixed up. Here it is:
Sorry, sorry. This is the beer advert. Enjoy:
Well, why not imitate the McDonald’s approach? McDonald’s and big breweries like Coors, SABMiller and so on aren’t dissimilar – they mass produce a standardised product and they do it quickly. Here we have two mega-industries selling something that people principally love (burgers and beer) but they are both suffering from external attack by health campaigners and internal attack by smaller entrepreneurs who aim to offer something better (the artisanal burger outlets such as GBK and Byron, and the craft brewers).
McDonald’s, as we know, has undergone a success story. They’ve shaken off the paedophile clown image, the garish red and yellow branding, the screaming children’s parties, and now they’re the Everyman Burger Joint. The McDonald’s advert warmly tells us that everyone, yes everyone, from the brickie to the billionaire, are all welcome and comfortable down at their local McDonald’s Restaurant. If you happen to have an occasion, There’s a Burger for That.
It’s no surprise that There’s a Beer for That wanted to emulate, consciously or otherwise, the cheeky-chappy, warm-and-informal, yet ultimately classy tone of the McDonald’s advert.
The difference here is that McDonald’s also landed their brand change by refurbishing all of their outlets from the horrid, wipe-clean yellow and red plastic to a more subtle, leather and wood, dark green affair. There’s very little physical presence There’s a Beer for That can achieve, so imitating McDonald’s success will only go so far.
They have other plans, of course. One of which is a beer and food pairing service available on that there Twitter (use the hashtag #BeerMatch, yo) which is due to be launched later in November. So, what beer goes with my McDonald’s burger?
*Disclaimer: I have not received money from McDonald’s or the Britain’s Beer Alliance, who back the ‘There’s a Beer for that Campaign’. Chance would be a fine thing; I want to buy a house someday.