Thursday, April 24, 2008

Miller Creates Blog to Spy & Trash on Budweiser

Brew Blog is a free Web site dedicated to breaking news about beer. Especially news about Anheuser-Busch's beer. Brew Blog is the latest and perhaps most unlikely front in Miller's drive to rattle Anheuser. Mr. Arndorfer tracks the St. Louis company's every move, from earnings reports to management changes. He relishes revealing details of its products before Anheuser does. The corporate marketing battlefield has long been strewn with pithy digs in ads and selective news leaks about others' business woes. But it's unusual for a company to go to the trouble of creating its own media arm to grind out news on the competition. While the site lets Miller tweak its famously tight-lipped rival, it also gives the company a platform to take a first crack at spinning industry news. "They are trying to aggressively go around the gatekeepers" in newsrooms and the trade press, says Stephen Quigley, an associate professor of public relations at Boston University. "It's something you couldn't do five years ago," before the proliferation of blogs.

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