Sometimes a brand doesn’t have to say a word

Every once in awhile, a brand has such a rock solid understanding about themselves, their raving fans and the world in which they exist — they can do something powerful without saying a single word.

Budweiser has always been about as American as it gets.  Their fan base is true blue American and they’ve talked about values like tradition and respect for years.  (I hope their new owners are smart enough not to change that in the least)

4 months after 9/11, this is the spot they ran on the SuperBowl.  Lots of companies ran similarly spirited ads that year.  What makes Budweiser remarkable and so true to their brand is that every 9/11 they run this spot as a tribute to their country and the tragedy and triumph of that day.


I have to say….despite the fact that I think Bud is lousy beer, I have an incredible amount os respect for the company and this spot still makes me choke up a little.

Don’t ever forget that your brand can and should stand for something much greater than what you sell.  It should be a reflection of your heart.  Bud sets an impressive example.

Hat tip to my friend Steve for reminding me of this spot.

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10 comments on “Sometimes a brand doesn’t have to say a word

  1. CNolte says:

    Choke up a bit is right – down right teary-eyed.

    Not a beer drinker any more – but wonderful statement by August Busch and company.

    Thanks for sharing.


  2. Maria says:

    This commercial never fails to make me cry. Being from St. Louis makes me particularly sappy about it, those are our clydesdales.

  3. I had completely forgotten about this ad, thanks! I have never been a fan of Bud products either but their ads sure make me wish I was…and really, at the end of the day, what more could an advertiser hope for?

  4. Chris,

    Me too. It’s an impressive use of their brand and a clear understanding of their audience.

    Not only is it patriotic. It’s brilliant.


  5. Maria,

    Can you actually go see the horses in St. Louis? That would be quite the sight, I’m guessing.

    Next time I am down there to root for my Dodgers — I’ll have to check it out!


  6. Marcie,

    “I have never been a fan of Bud products either but their ads sure make me wish I was…and really, at the end of the day, what more could an advertiser hope for?”

    You’re so right…that says it all. It gave me the same urge. I wanted to go out and buy their product. Just to be associated with them.

    That’s powerful branding.


  7. Maria says:

    Yes you can! Some of them live at the brewry, and you can see them on the tour, which I highly recommend (it’s free, fun, interesting, and there’s free beer at the end).
    And some live at Grant’s Farm, which is a great place to take kids.

    Also interesting, they have rules in place that the clydesdales cannot work for more than a few hours a day. So anytime you see them in a commercial, it was probably a rather expensive, several day shoot. They’re pretty pampered animals.


  8. Maria,

    I am so there! Except that I really, really dislike their beer. Well, it’s free. I could drink it for free! 🙂


  9. Jan DeBartolo says:

    The best thing about Bud are those magnificant horses. They are simply gorgeous..

  10. Jan,

    The are magnificent animals for sure.


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