In the bottom of the seventh inning at the Chicago Cubs home finale Wednesday a beer vendor walked through the lower bowl of Wrigley Field yelling “Last call last call for Old Style.” “Literally” an onlooker remarked. “Yeah literally last call” the vendor said with a smile. The fate of Old Style at Wrigley Field is still undecided but after the Cubs and Budweiser signed an exclusive marketing deal estimated to be worth around $14 million annually over 10 years the days of beer vendors hawking Old Style with a distinctive “Hey Old Style!” could be over. Old Style which is brewed in Milwaukee and owned by Los Angeles-based Pabst Blue Ribbon quickly reacted to the exclusive Bud deal. Earlier this month the company created a marketing campaign dubbed “Decision 2014 Keep Old Style in Wrigley.” Old Style has flooded the market with this plan from newspaper ads to Twitter campaigns to passing out signs outside of Wrigley. A Chicago-based marketing company 138 Media is working with Pabst to push this “fan-fueled” initiative. The Cubs don’t seem impressed. “There’s a term that they use for what Old Style is doing it’s grassroots PR and marketing” Cubs vice president of communications Julian Green said. “It can be very effective. What Old Style knows what our fans know we’re going to be considering a number of different offerings next year including Old Style. I think it’s a bit misinformed for Old Style to have a petition to keep them on the ballot when we haven’t said they’re off the ballot.” Pabst Blue Ribbon Chief Marketing Officer Dan McHugh said the company is just being proactive and “listening” to their fans. “We’re making sure the voice of the consumer is heard loud and clear out there” he said in a phone conversation. “Quite frankly this is last thing we want to happen. We have a brand that has sponsored the Cubs for over 60 years. It’s one of the longest ongoing sponsorships in sports. It’s part of the fabric of going to Wrigley Field.” Some vendors are worried about only being able to sell Budweiser and Bud Light.
Old Style trying to keep presence at Wrigley
ESPN | Sep 26