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Volume 24 No. 117
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Social Studies: Dos Equis' Ryan Thompson On The College Football Playoff, ESPN Partnership

Heineken USA Brand Dir for Dos Equis (@DosEquis) Ryan Thompson has been with the brewer since ’08 and calls himself “The Man Behind the Man” -- the brand’s “Most Interesting Man” character. Thompson said, “The reality is we look at 2016 as the year of the reboot of the brand, the reboot of the campaign and the reboot of the man himself. We knew we needed to contemporize the 'Most Interesting Man.' What you see now is an edgier man of action, a modern man for today’s drinker. It gives more permission than his predecessor to embrace technology and to make sure he is more social and more accessible for today’s audience.” It was announced last year that Dos Equis and ESPN reached agreement to make the beer the official beer of the CFP. Thompson: “Given Dos Equis’ foray into primarily the sports viewing occasion and desire to more impactfully be a part of that occasion, in particular, the on premise, our ears really perked when we heard about this platform. Without the validation of a large sports platform, we didn’t see the commercial viability to be as large as it is with it.”

Must-follow: For me, ensuring I am a keeper of the brand, College Football Playoff and some of the ESPN commentators.
Favorite App: I get a lot of my news through ESPN and SmartNews.
Average time per day on social media: I’d probably put it around two hours.

Wanting to be attached to a big sports property:
Over the course of time leading up to this and planning on the business and understanding the direction of the beer industry, it was abundantly clear to us in order to be commercially viable within not just the sports bar and pub space -- but everywhere you go there’s television in the sports viewing occasion -- we had to be playing in it and had to be serious about it.

Lessons learned from first year of ESPN partnership
It’s about staying committed to building the foundation with authentic association to the platform and to the fans. Being the new guys on the block, the reality is you can’t just come in and try to look at this through the lens of your brand, you have to look at it through the lens of the platform and the sport and the fans that have already been a part of it decades before you. We’ll continue to build that platform for the next several years. This is not a one-and-done deal.

Additional marketing through sports focused on Hispanic demo:
Boxing is more Tecate’s world. As a premium Mexican import, multicultural and Spanish-dominant consumers are extremely important to Dos Equis. We will continue to embrace that audience and make the brand as well as the “Most Interesting Man” more accessible to them. You’ll see that with our college football-themed commercials featuring the most interesting man moving forward.

Walking the line as a beer brand on social media with younger audience
Platforms such as Snapchat, Instagram, etc., they come with their own restrictions and they have also been great partners and have created unique offerings to reach those fans who are 21-plus. At the same time, from a responsibility standpoint, Snapchat in particular, those under the legal drinking age are automatically protected from receiving age-gated filters and ads.

CFP Snapchat filters
This past September with the launch of the new “Most Interesting Man,” Dos Equis’ first-ever Snapchat campaign included that national filter. We will have snap ads running through the College Football Playoff and an upcoming national filter on the day of the national championship.

A social media presence for “Most Interesting Man”:
That’s something you will have to stay thirsty for.

If you know anyone who should be featured for their use of social media, send their name to us at