Miller High Life Fuses Philanthropy and Facebook

mhl2Miller High Life appears to be replacing its Super Bowl ad buy with some goodwill marketing. The brand has announced a philanthropic campaign called “Official Beer of You,” where viewers of drinking age can sign a contract at MillerHighLife.com.

There, visitors who fill out a form (e-mail, home address, phone number, etc.) can donate $1 to Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans, or the participants can have a $1 coupon mailed to themselves. Either way, they will be entered into a drawing to play a role either in a Miller High Life TV ad or on the brand’s Facebook page.

Participants will also receive a downloadable so-called sponsorship kit that will entail a personalized “Official Beer of [Participant’s Name]” logo, as well as the chance to purchase personalized Miller High Life T-shirts, mugs, and beer koozies. While filling out the form, participants can opt into e-mail, postal mail, and text messages from the brand.

Meanwhile, Miller High Life appears to be building on its long-crafted “little guys” brand image. During 2009’s Super Bowl, it ran a one-second TV spot. Last year, the brand shared its Super Bowl commercial with four small businesses. A prepared statement for the brand today said: “By offering to ‘sponsor’ thousands of regular folks who embody the brand’s honest and authentic values, Miller High Life is challenging the notion that overpaid athletes and celebrities make the best brand spokespersons.”

According to the Chicago-based company, the “Official Beer of You” campaign will be supported with display ads, print, television, radio, and point-of-sale efforts.

Meanwhile, the $1 donations will go to the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. The philanthropic effort follows the brand’s “Give a Veteran a Piece of the High Life” initiative from last summer.

Miller High Life was not available to comment on this story. With 12 days left before the Super Bowl, the brand is not on any industry lists of known advertisers for the game.

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