These video cards were pretty, pleasant to watch, even touching. But too often, they were no more distinctive than the two identical Hallmark cards you received from two different neighbors. Budweiser's and Miller's cards both featured horses, jingle bells, holiday music, and snowy countryside scenes. Indeed, it's hard to tell which brewery sponsored which ad. And if an ad could've come from either beer brand, what was the point?
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Sure, the holiday time of the year has most folks relaxing their sharp-elbowed approach to an often difficult world. So it's true that mixing a holiday greeting with any aspect of marketing competitive advantage requires a deft touch. Incorporating a product-distinctivenss message--like, say, citing one brewery's family ownership or another's Mexican origin--could come off as crass. Especially when when prospective customers are in a "goodwill towards all" mood.
Then again, with real creativity, a brewery's ad agency just might be able to pull off a clever blending of product distinctiveness and seasonal joy.
Too difficult a challenge? Not for Heineken...
And if you're a beer brand, adding just the right dash of product distinctiveness can add some jingle, too!