Ad agency that paired Bud Light, Dylan Mulvaney in serious panic mode

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The marketing firm that came up with the idea to team up Bud Light with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney has been in “serious panic mode” for the last couple of months.

California-based Captiv8 has been teaming up social media influencers with major consumer brands for the last eight years, to moderate to decent success.

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The firm claims to have a database of more than one million influencers from YouTube, TikTok, Instagram and Twitter, the New York Post reported.

But the TikTok video Mulvaney posted on April 1, of the trans activist celebrating her “Day 365 of womanhood” with a Bud Light can with her likeness on it unleashed a firestorm like no other and it was felt in Captiv8’s offices.

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“There was a lot of chatter” among employees about what the backlash the firm might receive over the poorly-thought-out campaign, according to a source.

“Internally, the company was in serious panic mode,” the insider said, but added that things have returned to “business as usual” unlike employees at Bud Light.

It is unclear how involved Captiv8 was in the partnership and whether the firm played a direct role in Mulvaney’s TikTok video.

Bud Light’s parent company Anheuser-Busch has kept the origins of the Mulvaney campaign but two executives involved were placed on leave soon after the boycott heated up.

Bud Light recently suffered its worst sales week ever, falling 25.7% in the week ended May 20 — and could soon be overtaken by Modelo Especial as America’s No. 1 beer brand.

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Sales staff working for independent wholesalers that sell Anheuser-Busch products are feeling the pain of the boycott.


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Sales of Bud Light have plummeted for seven straight weeks with some salespeople having lost about $2,000 in May, ABC News reported.

“Good people are going to start leaving because they aren’t making money,” former Anheuser-Busch executive Anson Frericks told the news outlet.

A typical salesperson makes about $60,000 annually including $20,000 in variable pay which depends largely on commission, he explained.

A supervisor from a Florida-based distributor detailed that the average salesperson made about $2,000 less last month, particularly after a poor showing on the usually hot Memorial Day long weekend.

“This has really, really killed a lot of the guys who are commission-based,” the supervisor said. “That’s who it’s really hurting. There’s nothing they could’ve done – this was thrown in their faces.”

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