The Most Interesting Beer (Consumer) in the World: How Dos Equis Built Its Powerhouse Brand


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Dos Equis marketers have succeeded in breaking their brand out of the crowded beer pack through focused investigation, creativity and diligence. A recent article on the Retail Customer Experience site – – offers insights into how they did it.

Here’s a quick summary, beginning with some background and context:

– It’s 2007, and there are more than 20,0000 beer brands worldwide. How is Dos Equis, a small brand virtually unknown outside its native Mexico market (originally brewed by Cerveceria Cuauhtemoc-Moctezuma in Monterey, and licensed to Heineken to market and distribute) going to compete?

– A brand data analysis showed that Dos Equis had begun making sales inroads in Austin, Texas, one of the few southwestern states where the brand had distribution at that time. Further investigation showed that University of Texas students had ‘discovered’ Dos Equis during their Spring breaks in Mexico, and liked it so much that they continued consuming the brand after returning to school.

– The Dos Equis brand director sought to learn more about, build on, and expand, this perception. Through both formal and informal reputation research, one of the key insights to emerge was that the brand had a different image compared to Corona, the beer most Americans associated with Mexico. While Corona meant sun, beaches, parties, relaxation, and vacations, Dos Equis was the more mysterious and exotic side of Mexico, with a unique flavor.

– The challenge for the Dos Equis brand team was then to leverage this learning into sales; and they had to understand consumer beer drinking needs on a more intimate and personal level. Beyond the distinctive taste and Mexican heritage represented by Dos Equis, the brand sought to establish both compelling positioning and an emotional customer connection.

– In addition to what is covered in the article, what their research into beer consumption drivers revealed was that Dos Equis would be in a position to capitalize on the growing consumer trend toward ‘trading up’, or premiumization, which would combine the interests, attitudes, and taste preferences of their target customer. So began development and testing of the “Most Interesting Man in the World” persona, which, according to research conducted by Millward Brown, created one of the most enjoyable and engaging ad campaigns ever run in the U.S.

– The Dos Equis brand team also applied a number of promotional and social media approaches to extend the brand appeal embodied in the ad program. One element of the campaign itself, for instance, had a call to action in which consumers could apply to become the Most Interesting Man’s next assistant. On the Internet, Dos Equis’ advertising agency created, which featured glimpses into the life of the Most Interesting Man. It showcased objects of interest and games for viewers to test their ‘interesting’ skills. The agency also had an extended PR effort, including non-traditional media and marketing communications approaches.

While Heineken’s brand share in the U.S. has been slipping, the volume of Dos Equis sales has been steadily rising ever since the campaign, and the Most Interesting Man persona, was introduced. As one industry analyst has noted: “It’s an awesome brand with a very broad consumer base.” So, how does Dos Equis continue dialing into this impressive set of results? Stay thirsty, my friends.

Michael Lowenstein, PhD CMC
Michael Lowenstein, PhD CMC, specializes in customer and employee experience research/strategy consulting, and brand, customer, and employee commitment and advocacy behavior research, consulting, and training. He has authored seven stakeholder-centric strategy books and 400+ articles, white papers and blogs. In 2018, he was named to CustomerThink's Hall of Fame.


  1. In order to succeed, you must first identify who are your target customer. Then you devise a service or product that suits their needs. Then keep them engage. It may sound easy but to rise above the competition, like you said, it needs diligence and creativity.


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