The reasons behind changes in purchase intent throws light on the polarized views. Some respondents expressed they believe a company like Bud Light should focus on its product rather than taking a stance on matters related to LGBTQ+. There were also comments about the company’s insincerity and poor handling of the situation, which led to a decrease in trust towards the brand.
In a similar vein, there was also general dissatisfaction with Target’s handling of Pride Month. Some expressed concerns about the company’s perceived exploitation of Pride for profit, the visibility of Pride-themed products, especially those aimed at children, and the company’s response to the backlash. While some felt that Pride Month and related issues were being forced upon them and their children, others were upset that Target seemed to back down from its support of Pride in the face of controversy. Retail Dive also reported on May 31, 2023, the coalition of LGBTQ+ advocacy groups called on the retailer to “release a public statement in the next 24 hours reaffirming their commitment to the LGBTQ+ community.”1
A significantly lower level of likability compared to other brands can be a factor in driving the lower purchase likelihood for Bud Light. On the other hand, the retail giant Target receives a higher likability rating, suggesting that certain brands, would require more than temporary criticism to diminish their strong brand affinity.
Bud Light has a lower likeability rating when compared to other brands.
% of US adult population and their feelings about brands involved in controversy in this year’s Pride month