When you already call yourself “The King of Beers” then it’s a small leap to full nationhood.
Budweiser’s decision to rebrand itself “America” for the duration of the US federal election cycle is exactly the kind of over-the-top statement favoured by the presumptive Republican nominee himself. Like Donald Trump, Budweiser has seized its dominant market share by being ubiquitous. The sheer breadth and scope of the product coverage in media and advertising makes the product itself all but irrelevant.
Bud has achieved its market share by carpet bombing the planet in its familiar logo script and red, white and blue colours. In that, Bud and Donald are in lockstep. Trump, after all, has reached his station in life by branding everything he touches in his own name. Not even his failures can damage the worldwide brand.
In Budweiser’s case, you know it already considers itself America’s beer so why not make it official if only for a few months. As an election time novelty it’s unlikely to spawn a copyright lawsuit by the real America. And, after all, the beer baron has no desire to take over the national debt or assume responsibility for Obamacare.
It’s genius really: “America for me, please!” will be shouted in bars, restaurants and backyard barbecues through the thirsty summer months while Donald and Hillary trade nasty rhetoric. As “America”, Bud becomes the unofficial Official Beer of the Race for the White House. Those other brands will be forgotten faster than Dr. Ben Carson. This isn’t exactly a non-partisan move, either. If you choose not to drink “America” then you’re obviously one of Them – a socialist teetotaler like Bernie Sanders.
A Trump victory in November and the rebranding may become permanent.
At best, hoisting a frosty can of America will remind the average American to vote this fall. At worst, it will remind them of Trump’s slogan to “Make America Great Again.” Of course, the liquid America was never great in the first place and voices abroad would say the same about the country.
The only thing I know for sure is that by the time the US election is over I will have had a bellyful of America. And the hangover will be a bitch.