OAN Roy Francis
UPDATED 9:06 AM – Saturday, April 22, 2023
Alissa Heinerscheid, the Bud Light senior marketing executive behind the Dylan Mulvaney ad campaign has gone on a leave of absence, and will be replaced.
Heinerscheid led the Bud Light marketing effort since June 2022, and had made the decision that the brand needed to branch out, and be more inclusive in order for it to have a future.
A day before Mulvaney announced the partnership, Heinerscheid made an appearance on the “Make Yourself At Home” podcast. During that appearance she talked about her work with the company and how she wanted to transform the Bud Light brand, and move it away from its “fratty” and “out of touch” past to a company that “embraces inclusivity.”
“I’m a businesswoman, I had a really clear job to do when I took over Bud Light, and it was ‘This brand is in decline, it’s been in a decline for a really long time, and if we do not attract young drinkers to come and drink this brand there will be no future for Bud Light,‘” Heinerscheid said. “We had this hangover, I mean Bud Light had been kind of a brand of fratty, kind of out-of-touch humor, and it was really important that we had another approach.”
After the severe backlash that Bud Light received due to the Mulvaney campaign, the parent company, Anheuser-Busch, defended their move. Anheuser-Busch InBev CEO Brendan Whitworth released a statement addressing the situation.
“We never intended to be part of a discussion that divides people,” Whitworth said. “We are in the business of bringing people together over a beer.”
A boycott of the company ensued in the days following the Mulvaney campaign. Anheuser-Busch then saw its market value drop by $5 billion as a result of the boycott, which included country singers such as Kid Rock, and Travis Tritt among many others.
According to a report from the Daily Wire, “no one at the senior level of the company was aware of Bud Light’s polarizing partnership with Dylan Mulvaney.” As a result, the company had placed a pause on all marketing efforts and was in the process of implementing a more thorough “process for evaluating future influencer partnerships.”
On Friday, Anheuser-Busch told Ad Age that Heinerscheid will be taking a leave of absence and will be replaced by Todd Allen, who was previously working as the global marketing VP of Budweiser.
According to a company spokesperson, the replacement of Heinerscheid is a part of a series of moves in which “senior marketers are more closely connected to every aspect of our brand’s activities.”
However, the spokesperson did not mention Mulvaney, and did not offer an apology to customers who had been offended by the Mulvaney campaign. Instead Ad Age was told that the company will now focus on what they do best, which is “brewing great beer for all consumer, while always making a positive impact in our communities and on our country.”
The company also did not clarify if Heinerscheid would be coming back to the company or not.
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