So the idea here is that I’ll post an odd beer ad from TV that caught my eye every day this week. Why? Hell, I figured it would be amusing.
First up is an ad for the US beer Hamm’s, which I’m pretty sure doesn’t exist any more. I found out about these Bear ads through reading Ambitious Brew, Maureen Ogle’s excellent history of beer in the United States. She said the Hamm’s Bear was quite an iconic figure back in the 1960s and resulted in sizeable sales boosts for the company.
Here is one of the many Bear ads available online.
Maybe I’m viewing the ad through modern eyes but that just screams “marketing to kids”. It looks like a frigging cartoon! A grown man isn’t going to change his beer-drinking habits because of a cartoon bear. But a kid might – so a kid grows up watching the Hamm’s Bear ads, which he likes because they’re a cartoon. Then, when he turns, say, 16 and decides to try and sneak into bars or buy beer, which beer do you think he’s going to buy?
I reckon he’ll buy the brand that was implanted in his head by a cartoon bear six or more years earlier. Jeez, if any brewer tried to advertise beer this way nowdays, they’d be lynched.