Stephen: Budweiser, Coke, and Pepsi among big brands without traditional Super Bowl ads in 2021

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As the pandemic continues, Anheuser-Busch has announced it will not be advertising Budweiser during the Super Bowl for the first time since 1983, and is instead donating the money it would’ve spent on the ad to coronavirus vaccination awareness efforts. The brand still has four minutes of advertising during the game for its other brands, including Bud Light, Bud Light Seltzer Lemonade, Michelob Ultra, and Michelob Ultra Organic Seltzer. The decision to not advertise Budweiser follows a similar announcement from PepsiCo., which won’t be advertising Pepsi, in order to focus on its sponsorship of the halftime show (though it will still be advertising Mountain Dew and Frito-Lay products.)

Other veteran Super Bowl advertisers like Coke, Audi, and Avocados from Mexico, will not advertise at all during this year’s big game. A marketing expert says the advertisers are likely making the right move as “people aren’t necessarily in the best mood to begin with” and “there’s a risk associated with messages that are potentially too light […or] too somber.” Adding to this is that many companies lost money over the past year due to the pandemic, and some may have decided that Super Bowl ads are just not worth it this year.

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