Bud Light Asks NFL Fans To Socially #BooTheCommish At The Remote Draft For Covid-19 Relief

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The 2020 Draft may be behind closed doors, but NFL sponsor Bud Light asked football fans to maintain their tradition of booing Commissioner Roger Goodell during the event through an integrated activation called #BooTheCommish.

This year’s remote, virtual draft was closed to fans due to the coronavirus pandemic, but without the live audience the league’s official beer feared the fan tradition of booing the boss would disappear.

So the Anheuser-Busch brand built a campaign around incentivising football fans to maintain the booing.

Announced in a 20 April tweet on the beer’s social channel, Bud Light offered fans a simple participation mechanic of posting their own ‘booing video’ to their social account with the hashtag #BooTheCommish and the @budlight handle by 25 April and the sponsor would pass the boos on to Goodell.

Bud Light also promised to donate $1 to the NFL Draft-a-Thon (which is raising money for coronavirus relief) for each social boo – up to a total of $500,000.


Bud Light promoted the initiative with content across its online channels led by a hero video announcing explaining the idea, the mechanic and showing that Goodell is able to take the criticism in stride (and arguably even own).


The creative drives viewers to the web hub where they can donate personally at https://boothecommish.com/.


Another aspect of Bud Light’s draft activation included sponsoring the ‘Virtual Huddle’.


Thus far, 10 days after the campaign launched and once the three-day Draft was done and dusted more than 40,000 social fan boos had been logged on the campaign’s hub and shared socially and have thus contributed more than $40,000 to the fundraising target.


This activation presses several hot sponsorship buttons: it is fan-focused, participatory and raises money for a good cause in a time of need.

It also shows that NFL Commissioner Goodell has a sense of humour as he showed he was happy enough to continue to be the butt of booing at the Draft: a tradition which emerged from fans venting their frustrations with the league.

The 2020 NFL Draft was held remotely, with players picked appearing via virtual reality in EA, after the league had to cancel its plan to host the live event in Las Vegas with as many as 500,000 fans.

The draft started at 8pm (EST) on 23 April and aired on ABC, ESPN and the NFL Network, as well as being streamed live on the WatchESPN app and the NFL Mobile app, along with Sling TV and YouTube TV.

This light-hearted campaign combines humour and cause and may mark the start of a change in tone in brand advertising after the last month’s emotionally serious marketing approach.

According to a recent Morning Consult survey (of 2,200 adults), 84% of US consumers want to see brands contribute to society and 80% want brands to show empathy, per a recent Morning Consult survey of 2,200 US adults.

This had led to a 41% surge in cause-related marketing according to data from the Interactive Advertising Bureau.




Bud Light Seltzer


















This case study originally appeared on Activative: which offers clients creative and strategic intelligence to fuel game-changing sports and sponsorship marketing. www.activative.co.uk

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