Friday, April 23, 2004
Canadian Beer

Well, this was just too good to pass up. It would appear, for all their rhetoric on the subject, that Canadians just can't get enough of American beer:

Upheaval at Molson as well as Labatt takes place amid indications that U.S. giant Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc.'s Budweiser is poised to unseat Labatt Blue as the top-selling beer in Canada....Budweiser has "had tremendous momentum over the last few years," said Bob Scott, president of Toronto-based Ascot Marketing, which tracks the industry.
Hmmm...interesting, no? The article continues:
Some critics wonder if it isn't too late in the game for the big boys to turn things around.

"They have a really tough marketing problem," said Chris Staples, a partner at Vancouver advertising agency Rethink. He says brands like Blue and Canadian as mass brands that are in danger of losing their appeal in a splintering market.

"Mass brands like Canadian and Blue that once spoke to a huge cross-section of people are endangered. The danger is, if you try and recalibrate to attract a more youthful customer you end up turning off your core consumer."

He believes that both Molson and Labatt missed "one of the major trends in marketing over the last 10 years: the extension of the mainstream brand equity into niche markets."
So tell me (a non-drinker), if Canadian beer is so much better than American beer (a point that has been shoved into my head more times than I can count), why are Canadians buying more of the American stuff? Are they choking down 'bile' to save a few bucks? Or is it that American beer is actually better than most of my friends would care to admit?
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A webjournal of ideas, comments, and various other miscellany from a Texan university student (with occasional input from his family) living in Toronto, Ontario. Can you say "culture shock?"

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