Budweiser Boycott: Two Anheuser-Busch InBev executives involved in organizing Bud Light’s advert with TikTok star Dylan Mulvaney have been placed on leave due to death threats and conservative backlash. Alissa Heinerscheid, Bud Light’s VP of Marketing, and Daniel Blake, Budweiser’s Group VP of Marketing, have voluntarily taken a leave of absence.
To regain their lost audience, Bud Light will temporarily brand their cans with a camouflage pattern.
The executives are facing job consequences because Budweiser received conservative backlash for collaborating with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney in an advert. Mulvaney promoted Bud Light’s March Madness contest on TikTok, offering customers a chance to win $15,000. In addition, the company sent Mulvaney a commemorative can featuring her likeness to mark her one-year gender transition anniversary.
The backlash from conservatives led to a brand boycott and sales decline. Data from Bump Williams Consulting shows a 23% drop in Bud Light sales, amounting to $71.5 million, compared to the previous year. Budweiser sales also declined by approximately 11%, totaling $31.5 million.
The Biden administration’s press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre, condemned the violence and vitriol against transgender Americans, highlighting a bomb threat made against one of the brewery’s facilities.
Budweiser’s decision to distance itself from the advert has disappointed supporters of Mulvaney, who perceive it as bowing down to right-wing pressure.