- Football fans can now take courses in watching college football thanks to a new certificate program that was debuted this week by Heineken-owned beer brand Dos Equis, according to a press release.
- The series of online courses is called the College Football Football College. Enrollment began Aug. 24 and students who watch all ten video lessons and take a final exam will receive a PDF certificate that can be printed and hung on their wall after.
- Anyone who completes the exam by Dec. 20 will be automatically entered for a chance to win tickets to the College Football Playoff National Championship in New Orleans, where Dos Equis is the official beer sponsor.
Dos Equis is among several brands doubling down on digital marketing with football fans this years as traditional TV viewership numbers show weakness while viewing on social media platforms plays a role. The video lessons give Dos Equis a way to engage college football fans where they are spending more of their viewing time.
The College Football Football College campaign is somewhat tongue-in-cheek as it calls out the ardor of fans who yell at the TV while they watch games and debate the plays. At the same time, the course content appears to be genuine, covering topics such as misconceptions, trick plays and offensive positions to help fans become better-informed viewers who might still yell but will at least be experts as they do so. "While the college itself is absurd, the classes are legit," Dos Equis noted in the press release announcing the effort.
The curriculum was developed with John U. Bacon, who has authored books on college football as well as on business. The faculty includes ex-college and pro quarterback Jay Cutler, ESPN personality Katie Nolan and former college and professional tight end Martellus Bennett.
Fake versions of real-life rites of passages like going to college or getting married are in the air this week for some football-committed brands. Sports bar franchise Buffalo Wild Wings this week launched a "Football Prenup" that's built around a faux contact between football fans and their loved ones, governing the terms of game-watching for the upcoming season.
Dos Equis' sales have been growing even as many other mass market beer brands experience declines. The college for college football could help the brand bolster the trend by engaging younger consumers, and comes as the brand continues to position itself around the idea of exaggeration. Last year, the brand launched the "Keep It Interesante" campaign to encourage beer drinkers to embellish their stories. That campaign followed its long-running "Most Interesting Man in the World" campaign, which tried to make a legend out of that exaggeration.