Beer Boss: Bud Light Only Has “A Few Months” To Market Its Way Out Of Irreversible Market Share Loss

Beer Boss: Bud Light Only Has “A Few Months” To Market Its Way Out Of Irreversible Market Share Loss

Bud Light urgently needs to come up with a strategy to win back its customer base in the coming few months, a former executive warned, or its market share losses could become permanent.

The beer brand’s sales have fallen by about 25 per cent following the Dylan Mulvaney/trans marketing disaster that has plagued the brand and captivated marketers since April 1.

Parent company Anheuser-Busch’s has now shed $US27 billion in value in mere months.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Anson Frericks, a former exec at Anheuser-Busch, said stores such as Walmart and Kroger would soon “reset” their shelf space allocations based on recent sales data.

Frericks, who left the company in April last year, said Bud’s rivals such as Coors Lite, Millers Lite and Yuengling could win out in any reallocation.

“Those brands will have a better likelihood to succeed long term because they have more shelf space, they have more inventory, they have more back-stock, and they have more availability for consumers,” Frericks said.

“That almost permanently then locks in this as the new norm of where their sales will be, and what their share of the beer category will be,” Frericks predicted of the impact on Bud Light.

He said that despite some bars boycotting Bud and Anheuser-Busch’s products generally, almost 90 per cent of beer sales in the US were via supermarket shelves as opposed to bars or restaurants.

“Anheuser-Bush needs to figure out a strategy, it needs to make a statement about who their customers are and who they’re going to serve now, and try and regain those customers now in June and July, because by time it’s August, September, it’s too late,” he said.

In further bad news for the brand, last weekend’s Memorial Day long-weekend  – which is typically the US’ biggest three days of beer sales for the year – saw Bud sales slump by a reported 60 per cent.

Anheuser-Bush has been frantically discounted Bud Light in hope of winning back drinkers, with an 18-pack selling for as low as $US12.99 in some stores.

There are now reports that salespeople working for independent wholesalers that distribute Anheuser-Busch products are feeling the pain of the ongoing boycott in their wallets, too.

Some say they have lost commission because of the drop in sales because of the boycott tied to the partnership with Dylan Mulvaney.

The incomes have been slashed for the salespeople who work at the roughly 500 independent wholesalers that sell Anheuser-Busch products to restaurants, bars, and also to grocery stores.

Some reported losing as much as $US2000 last month compared to the typical May because of the backlash.

Compensation for salespeople varies across distributors and markets, but according to Frericks, a typical salesperson makes around $US60,000 per year, including $US20,000 in variable pay, which depends largely on commission.

Frericks recently told the ABC: “Good people are going to start leaving because they aren’t making money.”




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