Labatt marketing memo talks about tricking people into thinking they’re buying craft beer
Earlier this week, Toronto-based beer blogger Ben Johnson obtained and published a marketing memo about Labatt, the once-Canadian beer giant owned by Anheuser-Busch InBev. The document, produced by an outside advertising agency and titled “Fun Craft Connection,” outlines a $2.7 million plan to intentionally mislead people into thinking that Shock Top, one of Labatt’s brands, is actually produced by a small craft brewer instead of a multinational beverage company. The memo reads:
Shock Top is Labatt’s big bet in the battle against Micro Craft. Micro Craft is growing rapidly, with the proliferation of brands eroding Labatt’s share… Shock Top has the small brewer/craft credentials to compete… [W]e need a significant transformation to redefine flavour in craft with our delicious, approachable liquid, and cement Shock Top’s position as a fun, flavourful craft brand.
The Huffington Post contacted a Labatt spokesperson, who confirmed the memo’s authenticity but said that Shock Top’s marketing strategy hasn’t yet been finalized. As for those “craft credentials” mentioned above? They’re discussed again a little further down the page.
Shock Top has craft credentials: 75% of consumers believe Shock Top is from a craft/unknown brewer.
Maybe the cool-guy orange slice mascot has something to do with it.