Why Miller Lite is Targeting Typography-Loving Millennial Guys on Instagram

A campaign made for the photo-sharing app

Headshot of Lauren Johnson

Design aficionados looking for cool fonts and calligraphy have posted more than 2.6 million photos and videos on Instagram with the #typography hashtag. Seriously, who knew?

Well, when Miller Lite marketers recently noticed that growing social audience, it crafted a campaign that zeroes in on millennial dudes.

"We know that one of the quickest trending topics hashtag-wise on Instagram is the idea of typography—things like #graphicdesign, #typography [and] #thedailytype," said Cris Rivera, director at Miller Lite. "The idea of leveraging something that natively already exists on the platform and bringing it toward a brand lens was something that was exciting for us."

While visual platforms like Pinterest, Instagram and Tumblr have a reputation for skewing toward women, Rivera said Instagram is quickly becoming guys' No. 1 social network.

"It's one where we're seeing folks moving from Facebook and Twitter solely into Instagram as their lead social channel," he said.

Through Labor Day, Miller Lite is serving paid ads and regular posts with pithy mantras like "Find Your Happy (Hour) Place" to guys between 21 and 34 years old on the photo-sharing app.

Of course, the fact that a beer brand is even advertising on Instagram is a new concept. Up until this summer, only a handful of brands had participated in Instagram's beta advertising program, in which the Facebook-owned app gave every promo the white-glove treatment.

Rivera said he's been trying to get Miller Lite into Instagram's ad program for more than a year, when the brand started putting serious marketing muscle into the app. Today's campaign marks "a significant jump on the platform going forward," he said.

With more alcohol brands on the platform, Instagram is now forking over the same type of age-gating and targeting tools that spirits and beer brands already have on Facebook and Twitter.

"For following organically, they're now requiring that age verification," said Marlon Millhouse, DigitasLBi Chicago's vp and group director. "For paid campaigns as well, they've always had some mechanisms in place that allow people to get filtered out if they're under the legal drinking age."

Check out Miller Lite's creative below.


Chief Creative Officer, North America: Ronald Ng

EVP/ECD, Morgan Carroll

SVP, Group Creative Director: William Matznick

VP, Creative Director: Matt Weiner

VP, Creative Director: Trevor Kuhn

Associate Creative Director: Nate Winter

Art Director: Andrea Giraldo

Copywriter: Eric Burshiem

Copywriter: Hector Bauza

Designer: Shelby Rodeffer

Designer: Julian Baker

SVP, Account Management: Todd Brandes

VP, Account Director: Marlon Millhouse

Creative Strategist: Alex Stuessy

Community Manager: Josh Druding

Associate Project Manager: Katelin Randall

@laurenjohnson lauren.johnson@adweek.com Lauren Johnson is a senior technology editor for Adweek, where she specializes in covering mobile, social platforms and emerging tech.