Similar to the Boston Bruins who endured a 39-year championship drought, the Amstel Light brand had lost its relevance in the 15 years since it hit the U.S. market. With declining sales, Amstel Light was barely on the radar of its target audience men, age 25-34. It had become the 'safe' beer no personality, nothing distinctive, no reason to be a part of conversations. When the Bruins finally won the 2011 Stanley Cup, the city of Boston went wild but no one partied harder than the team. After a massive night of celebration, sports media across the country began covering the team's $156,000 bar tab. Then, after a photo of the itemized receipt appeared on the Web, social media conversation erupted, carrying the story into the mainstream national news spotlight.
Initially, the conversation was about a $100,000 bottle of champagne but the team noticed something better. On the 24-inch long receipt, amidst 156 Bud Lights, there was a single bottle of Amstel Light. The team recognized an opportunity to jump into a trending story and knew we needed to react fast and smart. We had to know which player ordered that Amstel and we bet that sports fans would want to know too.
In just hours and with little budget, Amstel Light stole the conversation, receiving more publicity in a five-day span than in any 6-month period in 5 years.
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