For the first time in their shared history, Coors Light and Miller Lite walk into a bar together. What happens next is anyone’s guess.
And in this case, correct guesses could be worth real money.
Molson Coors today unveiled “The High Stakes Beer Ad,” a first-of-its-kind TV commercial that will air during the big game’s national broadcast on Feb. 12. Fans will have a chance to win a share of a $500,000 cash prize pool if they correctly predict details of the spot prior to when it airs during the Super Bowl.
Through an agreement with DraftKings, consumers age 21+ in all states except Virginia* can visit the site or the DraftKings app starting Sunday and predict every detail of what will happen in the top-secret spot – from the number of beers poured to the facial hair of the cast and even the type of dog pictured behind the bar.
“After being shut out of the Super Bowl for more than 30 years, we pushed to do something that had never been done before,” says Michelle St. Jacques, Molson Coors’ chief marketing officer. “By giving people the chance to predict every detail of the ad before it even runs, we’re bringing our fans along for the ride and getting them just as excited about our return to the big stage as we are.”
Fans can make their free picks until Super Bowl Sunday at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time. Winners will be announced the following morning to receive their share of the $500,000 prize pool.
With the chance to win a piece of a big pool of real money on the line, Molson Coors went to extraordinary lengths to keep the outcome a secret, including by filming several different endings of the ad.
“Why not keep the suspense going all the way to Super Bowl Sunday?” St. Jacques says.
The decision to gamify the precious 30 seconds of advertising comes as sports betting has hit the mainstream in the U.S. and become embedded in culture.
ESPN reported that more than 46 million Americans were expected to place legal bets on the NFL this season. But it’s not just the outcome of games on which people are placing bets. They’re playing fantasy sports, wagering on prop bets such as which receiver catches the first pass and on what flavor of sports drink will be dumped on the winning coach.
With so many sports fans engaged on such platforms (at least $161 billion in wagers have been placed since sports betting was broadly legalized, according to the New York Times), Molson Coors in 2022 upped its investments to reach them.
With the “High Stakes Beer Ad”, Molson Coors is extending its involvement through one of the biggest betting holidays – and one of the biggest media moments – of the year.
And it comes as the company’s light beer brands have gathered strength in the market. Coors Light and Miller Lite combined in 2022 to post their strongest dollar-share performance in more than a decade, growing share of the total industry in the fourth quarter, per Nielsen and IRI data.
That momentum paves the way for a bold return to the big game for Molson Coors, which has been effectively locked out of Super Bowl advertising since 1989. With Anheuser-Busch holding the game’s exclusive beer advertising rights, competitors were barred from airing ads on an official, national scale.
When AB relinquished exclusivity, Molson Coors took less than a minute to jump in, St. Jacques says. And the company’s two largest brands – Coors Light and Miller Lite – immediately began sparring over ownership of the ad.
In a full-page ad kicking off the battle in the Jan. 16 New York Times, Coors Light and Miller Lite each laid out their case. A can of Miller Lite was positioned next to text reading “The big game hasn’t tasted this great in 30 years.” A Coors Light can, directly below, was accompanied by the text: “The big game hasn’t been this refreshing in 30 years.”
The feisty brawl expanded to billboards in Golden, Colo., and Milwaukee, the birthplaces of Coors and Miller, respectively, as well on social and digital media.
And they continue to spar in the run-up to the Super Bowl.
As for the question still on everyone’s mind? St. Jacques still isn’t answering.
“No chance,” she says. “You’ll have to tune in just like everyone else."
*NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Promo runs 1/29/23 - 2/12/23 at 3:30PM ET. 21+, legal resident of U.S./D.C. Eligibility restrictions apply. Void where prohibited. DraftKings account required to enter. One entry per customer. $500,000 in total prizing available. See terms at http://draftkings.com/highstakesbeerad.
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