As concerned citizens, we’ve witnessed the strong response to Bud Light’s misguided support of a far-reaching trans rights movement, which left many traditional consumers feeling disregarded. The debacle, which involved their collaboration with Dylan Mulvaney, a transgender TikTok activist, led to a significant backlash that still reverberates in the corporate world.
For those who have not followed, Bud Light’s sales plummeted in April, not showing any signs of recovery since. It was reported by the New York Post, using data from Bump Williams Consulting and NielsenIQ, that Bud Light sales dropped by 23.6 percent compared to the same week the previous year in the week ending May 6.
Anheuser-Busch InBev, Bud Light’s parent company, has also been hit by the ripple effects of this marketing misstep. Declining sales were reported for other beer brands under their banner including Budweiser, Michelob Ultra, and Natural Light.
This decline in sales has continued unabated since Mulvaney’s partnership was disclosed to the public, giving conservatives a rare victory in the cultural landscape. However, Bud Light is far from the only company propelling this kind of message in their marketing and corporate practices.
Recently, the Daily Signal outlined a list of corporations that are also embracing this new woke ideology, which seems to be at odds with their traditional consumer base. At the top of their list is the retail behemoth, Target. This company has been known to support gay rights advocacy groups with millions in donations over the years, even contributing funds to schools for pushing the same agenda.
Recently, Target has come under fire for refusing to prevent transgender men from using girls’ restrooms and changing rooms, despite substantial losses in sales and market share from 2016 to 2018 due to consumer boycotts. This year, they even launched a line of clothing intended for transgender toddlers and infants.
Jeans manufacturer Levi Strauss and Co. also made the list. Their recent addition of a “gender-neutral” clothing line and their decades-long support of the gay rights movement puts them in line with the growing trend of corporates promoting a woke agenda. Levi’s has increasingly leaned into gender-neutral fashion since 2017, even publishing a guide to unisex shopping in 2019.
Furthermore, there’s the internationally recognized coffee chain, Starbucks, notorious for pushing a left-leaning agenda for years. A recent statement from the company indicated their commitment to reimburse travel expenses for employees seeking abortion or gender-affirming procedures if the services are not available within a 100-mile radius. This radical corporate activism has many critics saying that Starbucks is going ‘full Bud Light.’
Then, we have Sports Illustrated, a renowned sports magazine that has recently started featuring diverse swimsuit models including LGBTQ+ individuals, older people, and those with different body types, showcasing a shift towards a more liberal societal perspective.
The public outcry against Bud Light and the subsequent impact on their sales serve as a potent reminder to corporations about the power and voice of their consumers. However, it’s essential to recognize that the pervasive promotion of these ideologies isn’t limited to Bud Light.
Many large corporations are driving an agenda that seems to be increasingly at odds with a substantial part of the American public. The corporate sector’s shift towards these woke ideologies, especially when it appears to encourage practices such as child-grooming within the LGBT+ community, raises pertinent questions about their alignment with traditional American values.
It is clear that an informed and conscious consumer is a powerful force that can shape corporate behavior. The case of Bud Light serves as a strong indicator of this power. Yet, there is a clear need to extend this awareness to other corporations that may be advocating for ideologies that clash with traditional values, pushing societal boundaries too far too fast.
We, as conscious consumers, should hold corporations accountable for their actions, and stand our ground when we feel that they have overstepped. The power lies with us, as consumers, to choose the products and brands that align with our beliefs and values. In the face of corporations seemingly prioritizing woke ideologies over their traditional consumer base, our choices can send a potent message about the kind of society we wish to live in and support.
While it’s important to respect and acknowledge diverse perspectives in our multicultural society, it’s equally vital to prevent corporations from being unilaterally swayed by any singular, extreme ideologies. A balanced, respectful approach that doesn’t alienate or disregard any group of consumers is the need of the hour.
The decline in sales of Bud Light and other brands under Anheuser-Busch InBev is a stark reminder that in the end, it’s the consumers who can and will influence corporate behavior. The long-term financial health of these companies will be determined by their ability to respond to the values and concerns of their diverse consumer base.
As we move forward, let us remember that our collective actions and decisions as consumers have the power to steer the direction of our society. It’s up to us to make conscious choices and encourage corporations to do the same, ensuring a future that respects and upholds the diverse tapestry of values and beliefs that make up our great nation.