- Bud Light is running a multichannel campaign to tout its sponsorship of the England men's soccer team, introducing beer boxes that fans can wear on their heads. Each Boxhead pack shows the faces of players Jordan Pickford, Kyle Walker or Kieran Trippier, and includes a limited-edition can design, per an announcement shared with Marketing Dive.
- The centerpiece of the "Bud Light Boxheads" campaign is a 30-second TV spot to showcase the packaging. The AB InBev brand also is blanketing on-demand video, digital, social media and out-of-home channels with a variety of creative assets. Fans who submit a smartphone picture of bottles and cans of Budweiser products to a microsite can win prizes.
- Bud Light also collaborated with Amazon to open a virtual England beer store that sells Bud Light in its Boxhead packaging. As brands jump back into sports marketing now that pandemic-related restrictions are starting to roll back, the brand also will have a heavy retail presence with store takeovers and giveaways in partnership with major retailers, per its announcement. The was developed with Wieden+Kennedy London.
Bud Light aims to capture the enthusiasm of fans of the England men's soccer team in the buildup to the UEFA European Championship that was delayed for 12 months because of the pandemic. Its Boxhead packaging is a novel way to literally immerse fans in its branding as they show their support for England, whose first game will be against Croatia in London's Wembley Stadium on June 13.
Bud Light previously gained media attention for the Boxhead packaging after teasing it in March at a World Cup qualifying match at Wembley, which was empty of fans. Bud Light placed cut-out images of Pickford, Walker and Trippier in the stands, becoming the subject of an editorial cartoon in the Guardian newspaper, per the release.
"Brands often feature the face of their ambassadors on packaging, but Boxheads takes it to another level," Martina Isella, senior brand manager for Bud Light, said in the announcement. There simply isn't anything like it out there. It's a revolutionary step forward in beer packaging."
The month-long EUFA tournament, which is still called the Euro 2020, is a significant occasion for Bud Light to drive beer sales throughout the country as the official sponsor of the national team. More than half (55%) of consumers are likely to buy official sponsor beer brands over their usual choices, while 31% of Bud Light purchases are from repeat customers, according to data cited by Grocery Trader.
Bud Light's Boxheads campaign is another sign that brands are piling back into sports marketing after the pandemic led many sports leagues to cancel or delay events last year. While the National Football League managed to keep its regular season and playoffs mostly intact, other leagues were forced to reschedule games. With the Tokyo 2020 Olympics rescheduled for this year, packaged-goods giant Procter & Gamble this month launched its delayed campaign for the games, again saluting parents who encourage children to achieve athletic greatness. Diageo's Captain Morgan last month partnered with gaming site FanDuel on an online contest timed with the regular season and postseason of Major League Soccer (MLS) in the U.S. and the new Canadian Premier League. Snack brand Lay's in March launched a campaign featuring soccer superstar Lionel Messi as part of its global UEFA Champions League effort.