We just saw a slew of fabulous Anheuser-Busch spots that had the audience of 1,200 in hysterics. Remember the "Wassup?" spots? A-B's EVP/global industry development and CCO Bob Lachky, the genius behind "I love you, man," used the "Wassup?" series to demonstrate one of the beer giant's guiding marketing principles: Don't leave an idea too early. Evolve!
With "Wassup?," Lachky said, "we knew after one year it was dead." Couldn't figure out where, if anywhere, to take it. So far, they had a bunch of dudes repeating that one word and sticking out their tongues and going Blah! at the top of their lungs ... what next?
Then an A-B agency, Goodby & Silverstein suggested having other demographics use the phrase or iterations of it. So they had Yuppies asking, "What are you doing?" very precisely and rather boringly. Up next: Soprano-type men asking, "How ya doon?" in real Brooklynese. Very funny.
"Then we jumped the shark," Lachky said, and went with men from Wisconsin and North Dakota [he forgot ... Minnesota!] saying, "Hey, there" in a "Fargo" kind of way.
Ah, you betcha, that was funny!
I just caught up with Bob at the coffee urn and asked him why A-B ended the series. "It just ran its course," he said, pouring himself some Starbucks. "It was amazing that it lasted two and a half years, though."
I reminded him that he forgot about Minnesota and "Fargo" and he was all like, "I know! I know! I'm sorry! How could I forget Minnesota?!"
Take heart, Fargoans everywhere.