Where were the Clydesdales?

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Budweiser Clydesdale gets bath
Budweiser Clydesdales in Saratoga in 2016 / Photo by Rhonda Lane

On the day after Super Bowl LII, one of my friends posted to her personal timeline on Facebook: “So where are my Clydes?”

She’s not the only one asking.

(Click the links to see the images each Tweeter added.)


And one of my faves, which should be printed up as a PDF and posted on street light poles:

These #SB51 commercials are subpar. #bringbacktheclydesdales pic.twitter.com/buqIuqEHPf

I have to admit, it’s kinda genius the way the company explained the lack of a Clydesdale commercial in the 2018 Super Bowl.

Loosely paraphrased, according to a statement made in Parade Magazine, the reasoning is: we’re replacing it with the footage of the water we sent to hurricane ravaged areas.

If we horsey folk complain, we look whiny, peering over our goblets of wine squeezed from sour grapes.

However, we do get a Clydesdale commerical, but not in the Super Bowl. Check it out:

With any luck, we’ll see it on TV often.

Looks great, right? Feelin’ kinda misty and proud … so, why wasn’t it Super Bowl worthy? Just wondering. You may be, too.

A little Behind The Scenes

Over on Twitter, I found a snippet from some on-location shooting for the commercial titled “Beer Country:” (Don’t forget to click that link. )

Why it’s important to see a Clydesdale commercial in the Super Bowl

Super Bowl is the first gathering event of the year. We’ve had some time to get some traction on the new year. We’re ready for a gathering of family and friends.

Super Bowl is one show on TV where everyone watches everything, including commercials they’d zip through during the rest of the year.

You can tell the difference between a “normal” commercial and a “Super Bowl commercial.” It’s not just the star power, but the effort to delight, engage, and inspire.

Cultural traditions = audience expectations?

Families and friends gather together to watch the big game AND the commercials.

There’s a theory that the Clydesdales don’t resonate with the Millennial market. which you’ll see in that link in a blog post written by a Giana Ciapponi at the Ravishly blog. She gives different reasons for Budweiser’s decline in the beer market with that particular demographic.

In other words, she kinda shoots down that theory.

Also, many of you long-time readers of this blog may note: the image illustrating the blog post is of Belgian draft horses, not Clydesdales, but that’s my point.

You don’t have to know anything about horses to be fond of the Budweiser Clydesdales. 

Almost everyone watching the Super Bowl grew up watching the Clydesdales, a cultural touchstone of childhood. Millennials are having children who also are watching the game. Clydesdale commercials are family friendly.

Plus, in addition to their social conscience, Millennials are also famous for comfortably utilizing the second screen. Those fluent Digital Natives express themselves via social media.

For example, ahem, check out all the Tweets using the #bringbacktheclydesdales hashtag.

I’ll be adding the link to this post as soon as it goes live.

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