Bud Toasts ‘Average Joe’ in Super Bowl Spot

Budweiser’s 2016 Super Bowl commercial talked at length about what the company is not in an effort to show everything that the company is.

When Budweiser’s “Not Backing Down” commercial aired during the 2016 Super Bowl, many public relations professionals and students were probably confused by the spot, knowing the rule of thumb is to communicate using an affirmative voice.

“Not” was the most frequently used word in this commercial. The things that Budweiser said they are not appeal to the trendier, “hipster” population. They wouldn’t drink this beer, it would be considered too “basic” to them.

Rather, the description of what Budweiser says they are not appeals to the “average Joe.”


Budweiser’s Super Bowl commercial listed off a variety of things the beer is not.

Budweiser used an unusual PR tactic that appealed to an audience that is psychographically compatible with its corporate values. The company showed that they are an All-American classic, while poking fun at trendy, craft breweries and the people who prefer them. Budweiser is essentially boasting without bragging.

They know their target audience and are validating and complimenting them for not taking their business elsewhere, in the interest of being on trend.

What do you think about Budweiser’s commercial? Was creating an ad that avoided affirmative voice a good decision?

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