AB InBev supports global bar partners with localized social ads

Dive Brief:

  • Anheuser-Busch InBev is teaming with social ad platform Tiger Pistol in a move to help the beer maker’s global network of small businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19, the company shared with Marketing Dive‚Äč via press announcement.
  • The tool helps the brand and local businesses create personal connections with people through local activations. Retailers, restaurants and bars that sell AB InBev products can now use the platform to generate ads from their own Facebook Page to help drive local business into their locations.
  • Partners in Brazil, Belgium, the U.K. and Canada are already taking advantage of these tools including campaigns such as “Cafe Courage” and “Save Pub Life.”

Dive Insight:

Restaurants and bars have been hit hard by coronavirus-related shutdowns, and even as states begin to reopen, many people may be slow to return, making it hard to make up for the lost sales from the past few months. AB InBev is working to help boost traffic for local partners with this social campaign partnership with Tiger Pistol.

Even as consumers increased their at-home beer consumption during pandemic-related lockdowns, this did not make up for the lost sales for AB InBev, according to a Deloitte study cited in the press release, and this certainly did not help the neighborhood pub or restaurant.

As restaurants struggle with how to stay afloat, 33% of businesses said they needed help communicating their establishment’s status and 25% reported needing collaboration to encourage traffic to their locations, per a Datassential survey cited in the release. The partnership with Tiger Pistol, which AB InBev began piloting last year before signing a multiyear agreement, is designed to help boost traffic and sales to local partners. This bottom-up approach could benefit the beer behemoth that’s seen its sales dip in recent years as consumers look for different types of alcoholic beverages and more health-friendly beverage alternatives, even before the coronavirus pandemic.

Local pubs and restaurants can leverage this partnership by easily creating ads that feature information on the individual establishment alongside visual creative from AB InBev, allowing them to use the resources of a massive beer marketer and translate it into an ad with local flair.

On the consumer side, AB InBev brand Bud Light in March created a digital tracker to help consumers find local bars and restaurants that remain open for takeout orders amid the coronavirus pandemic. The brewer promoted the initiative through an #OpenForTakeout hashtag, and divert some of its media spending to raise consumer awareness.

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