Why sexist beer marketing isn't just "banter"

By Robyn Black

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Sexism Jw lees

Sexist beer campaigns
“Is banter now dead?”“It’s just a bit of a bar room giggle.”“Taking ourselves far too seriously. Sad”

These were some of the comments left in reaction to a story on this website that I recently wrote about the JW Lees campaign #BlameJohn.

The campaign has been running for a few months but a recent push on social media brought it some unwelcome attention on Twitter.

The idea behind the campaign is to encourage people - though in reality that’s just men - to stay in the pub for another pint.

They are encouraged to text a number and in reply they will an excuse as to why they cannot come home.

“Fancy a pint but the missus wants you home? Blame John. Text BLAME JOHN to 80010 and we will text you the perfect excuse from your mate to stay out late,” advertises the blurb.

Sadly this is not the only incidence of sexist marketing from the beer industry this year, or even this month.

There’s a frankly puerile ad from Leicester’s Steamin’ Billy Brewing Company, featuring a semi naked woman; the CAMRA Young Members recruitment flyer that was finally pulled after an outcry, and those dreadful, outdated, misogynistic pump clips, which, unbelievably, still keep appearing on bars even in 2014.

Buzzfeed even has a “13 of the most sexist beer ads of all time” feature on its site.

But all this is just “bantz” isn’t it?

Silly, shrill feminists getting ourselves in a right old two-and-eight over a “larf.”

Shout me down for pointing out that by excusing such chauvinism as banter you are mistaking humour for offensive bile as much as you like, but you would be missing the point for the industry entirely.  

The point being that this kind of marketing perpetuates the myth that beer is a drink only for men.

And in doing that you cut off an entirely new market for the industry, one which would be worth millions.

What a giggle. 

Related topics Beer Marketing

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