Of course, every rule has its exceptions. Take this graph from the U.S. Beverage Alcohol Forum, for example:
When you do just that, some striking differences show up. It’s almost like there are two different ad rulebooks, one for booze another for beer.
Beer ad rule: Alway show "group fun." Partying, fans at a game, stuff like that.
Have you ever seen a beer ad that takes a somber, almost sad approach?
Not long ago, an ad for Tullamore Dew scotch was featured here after being spotlighted by Ad Age. It shows a group of four black-clad young Irishmen singing a mournful tune as they make their way to a country church cemetery, sit on the graveyard wall, and toast one of their own they’ve lost. Somber indeed, until it’s revealed the “dead guy” is one of the same four guys. This becomes obvious when he's summoned to his wedding by his fetching bride. A very engaging little drama celebrating an insight into the psyches of young-adult men:
BoozeInsight: Guys are keenly are aware that the somewhat scary responsibilities of real adulthood await them, and it’s okay to remind them of this.
More beer ad dogma: Always depict young men in your ads.
Southern Comfort never got the memo.
But having said all that, he’s got a personal style that’s his alone, and it’s somehow engaging and apealing. He definitely enjoys life, and embraces an ethic every guy buys into, as the lyrics put it: "There ain't nobody just like me/I gotta be me." Drinking on the beach portrayed as never before. And it connects to the extent of nearly two million views on YouTube.
BoozeInsight: Guys can relate to, and delight in, a distinctive, interesting personal style, even if it’s not their own style, even if it’s not someone their own age.
Down the road, we’ll look for more examples of the booze guys breaking the rules.
Because if there's one thing young men enjoy, it's seeing rules being broken.