Finding the source of two beer ads?
December 13, 2011 1:37 PM   Subscribe

How can I find out when and where these Budweiser ads were first published?

Disclaimer: The ads below are probably nsfw, inasmuch as beer advertisements featuring swimsuit models are nsfw

It's interesting how these ads don't change much, even though they're definitely at least a few decades apart. I'm curious to know the exact years they were released, and where they were first featured (billboard, magazine, etc).

This is ad 1:

And this is ad 2

Would anyone happen to know? Or else would anyone have an idea of where I might find this out? I've tried google reverse image search, but to no avail (it pops up blogs that are commenting on these ads, but no specific details about the ads themselves).
posted by taltalim to Society & Culture (6 answers total)
A google search suggests that #1 was a magazine ad in 1988. (link is to an eBay auction from this search.)

This page says that #2 was a magazine ad from 2007.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 1:44 PM on December 13, 2011

The ads don't change much because they are part of a long-running campaign. Similairly, look at the Absolut vodka campaign. Or the Norelco Santa campaign.
posted by JJtheJetPlane at 2:28 PM on December 13, 2011

I can place the first one to 1987. That ad came out after Spuds MacKenzie; one of my friends' dad worked at the printing company that did a lot of the AB stuff. Also, it was one of the first "dirty"-ish .gif files I had on my Apple IIgs, which we got in 1988. I'm pretty sure it was printed just about fuckin' *everywhere*.
posted by notsnot at 3:34 PM on December 13, 2011

Best answer: A poster of #1 was given to me along with a few other beer ads in poster size by my friend in 1985. Her dad worked for the local AB distributor. She was trying to score one of the beach towels but I moved off to college before she got one. Although it is a long running campaign, I'm positive #1 was the one I got back then because the model in the middle's Vuarnet-like glasses were similar to my friend's and she sort of looked like the model.

It was a quarter century ago but I remember that poster and I seem to think it also appeared in Rolling Stone in that time period. I subscribed back then and remember the more squarish orientation. If you want an insertion date and find a library with Rolling Stone in microfiche look start looking in 1984 and you should find it before 1986. It was on the back cover where it AB seemed to have often in that time period.

A few decades later, I was working for a company who used the same ad agency that AB used in Chicago and saw the ad again. The Bud Girls campaign was long running as JJtheJetPlane says and there were several samples of the campaign in one of the conference rooms I was parked in all day. Some people on my account did time on the AB account. The agency lost the AB business over the past few years though. And I also met people later that had previously worked at AB in STL.

Although I don't have contact names for you, you may find some success if you contact AB HQ. What I learned from the agency and ex-ABers is they're very proud of their advertising and probably have an archive with a all the details of those pieces. Depending on your motivation for wanting to know, and your motivation to get a definite answer, you might find success that way.

Because a different agency is running the show now, trying go through the original agency would probably be fruitless. They probably shipped all that stuff off years ago, and the Art Director or other agency people that were working on are probably long retired.

Also, at bars they'd hire local young women to be the "Bud Girls" to give out stuff, including copies of that poster. I saw that in 1987 in Tempe. A week or so ago I found a "Bud Card" which looks like a credit card and had my name on it (which was crazy because I was using a fake ID at the time, WTF was I thinking?) which I think I got discounts at local bars with the card.

Hope this helps. For a beer ad, that really brought back some memories for me. So I'm off to try and find some old friends I haven't thought about in a long time.
posted by birdherder at 3:36 PM on December 13, 2011 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I remember #1 being in Rolling Stone magazine, circa 1983.
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:30 PM on December 14, 2011

This agrees with me for the year.
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:31 PM on December 14, 2011

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