Beyond Meat Ad

By Tom Dougherty
Beyond Meat ad shows progress, but miles to go

Beyond Meat ad shows progress, but miles to go

A little more than a year ago, I wrote that the new Beyond Meat ad was interesting but failed to include the customer in it.

It seems the vegetarian meat producer was listening.

“The Beyond Meat ad does go beyond that, no pun intended. But it still says the meatless brands are going through growing pains, even as the category itself grows.”

Or was it? The newest Beyond Meat ad is a call to action to the various customers it could attract. From your grandpa to your friends to NFL running back Todd Gurley. It asks the question, “What if we all go beyond?”

As a vegetarian myself, Beyond Meat is one of my favorites in the meatless category. But as we said in a study of that market, the individual brands themselves fail to distinguish themselves from each other. They are all just selling product benefits.

It’s close, but not identical, to say, “Buy a Honda. It’s got a steering wheel, four tires and an engine.” I’ll stick with my BMW, thanks.

Beyond Meat ad demonstrates the newness of the category

The Beyond Meat ad will still be somewhat effective because the brand is one of the largest in the US, third with 10% market share. Rising the sea of the category floats all boats, including the one steered by Beyond Meat. For those looking for meatless options, Beyond Meat is always considered.

Beyond Meat adBut it can do one step better. Its approach now still suggests an immature market, like craft beers many years ago. Then, those beer brands simply promoted the advantages of something different. The problem they faced, however, was that they ended up cannibalizing each other because they were all saying the same thing. Promoting the individual flavors and processes of their beers.

The Beyond Meat ad does go beyond that, no pun intended. But it still says the meatless brands are going through growing pains, even as the category itself grows.

“What if we all go beyond” is a call back to the brand itself, but it’s a little too clever. Cleverness is always the enemy of good marketing. Audiences see it as marketing and, therefore, ignore it. Clever doesn’t create preference.

The Beyond Meat ad is a nice next step. But meatless brands like Beyond Meat have more miles to go before they wake.

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