Budweiser showed up at the 2023 83rd Sturgis Motorcycle Rally with a very large tent in the City of Sturgis, South Dakota, on Main Street.  This was their effort to rebuild their brand and win back the loyal customers they lost this year due to their WOKE marketing campaign with BudLight earlier this year.  They were met with an unwelcome response.

The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is the world’s largest motorcycle rally that began in 1938 by a group of Indian Motorcycle riders. It was originally held for stunts and races.  Today, this rally brings beer-drinking motorcycle riders from all over the USA and worldwide.  This editor met several riders as far as Vietnam and Australia.

Sturgis Bikers took to social media as people saw no one visiting the Budweiser tent or drinking its beer.  Yet, the crowd was walking everywhere, and traffic was backed up on Main St. “ZERO attendees at the Budweiser tent in Sturgis,” one person commented. “This may be the BIGGEST marketing blunder of all time!”   See YouTube Video from CycleDrag – https://youtube.com/shorts/2Y9HGSNe0vw?feature=share.  The footage showed literally no-one in the booth and the Budweiser employees sitting around.    I saw only 1 BudLight delivery truck in Lead, SD on my way home this year, and they weren’t unloading any BudLight.

It appears that even Budweiser isn’t able to avoid or convince beer drinkers to come back to their brands.  Anheuser-Busch launched this advertising campaign to try and bring back their followers who were boycotting Bud Light.  See YouTube Commercial by clicking here.   In April 2023, Anheuser-Busch sparked controversy by sponsoring transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney by celebrating Mulvaney’s one-year anniversary of “womanhood.” Bud Light produced beer cans to honor Mulvaney’s transition from male to female, which led to nationwide boycotts.

Budweiser and the Anheuser-Busch company have been a time-honored tradition at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.  Biker bars everywhere have always proudly displayed their neon and tin sign memorabilia.  It appears this will take some time before American beer drinkers and motorcycle riders will forgive Budweiser and BudLight.