Colt 45, the smooth, refreshing hipster beverage.

Tastes like crap, more filling. (Photo by C-M.)

Last night, while flipping through Juxtapoz‘s May photo issue, I came across the above ad for Colt 45. We’re a little slow on the uptake here at, and had no idea that the famed malt liquor brand was now marketing itself to hipsters. But lo and behold, there it was, in the pages of an art magazine. This, of course, begs the question: what are the requisites of selling a grody-tasting beer-like product to all those trend-making young influentials? C-Monster investigated, and came up with these four essential rules:

Marketing Lesson #1:
Put the word “Yo” in front of anything and it’ll sound street. And street=cool.

Notice the fine print on the bottom right of the ad: Yo, enjoy our frosty malt beverage responsibly! See how easy that was? Now you try it. Here are a few examples to help you along: “Yo, hand me the organic peanut butter” or “Yo, I can’t go out because my parents haven’t sent me my monthly allowance yet” or, if you want to switch things around: “My stock portfolio is taking a beating, yo.” See how easy it is? Now do this while holding a 40 and you’ll have serious street cred.

Marketing Lesson #2:
Give it a heavy-duty interactive/graphic design element.

You gotta have an online presence. And hopefully, that online presence will give all those graphic designer-types something to do. Because they don’t have much else going now that they’ve graduated from art school and the economy is in the pooper. In this case, Colt 45 encourages creativity by asking people to create their own Colt 45 comics. Mind you, a real Colt 45 tale would probably feature somebody face down in the parking lot behind the Liquor-Mart, covered in their own piss, but no matter. This is advertising. It doesn’t have to be truthful, yo.

Marketing Lesson #3:
Have hot alterna-chicks talking about how great your product tastes.

It doesn’t matter if you’re shilling jailhouse hooch brewed with a moldy gym sock, just describe your product the way you’d lovingly describe a fine wine and some sucker is bound to fall for the ruse. The sweet little lady above talks about flavors that are “smooth yet robust,” an “ample body and smooth finish” and “flavorful extracts of malted barley and corn.” It doesn’t matter that malt liquor tastes like cheap, stale beer, or that it’s just what the doctor ordered if you’re looking to induce a near instantaneous headache. It’s smooth yet robust! And this hot chick wants me to drink it! I gotta get me some! Just serve it iced so the swill don’t make you ill.

Marketing Lesson #4:
Give your online store a clever name.

Those wily hipsters are on to all the typical marketing ruses. So, if you’re gonna try to peddle useless trinkets to them, you gotta baptize it with a cool-sounding name. No one wants to shop at an online “store.” It sounds too merch-y, too late ’90s. So call your sales site something clever, like, in this case, the Colt 45 online bodega. Now your average white, middle-class twentysomething isn’t just mindlessly consuming T-shirts and keychains, they’re gettin’ down with some underrepresented minority group. They’re part of the struggle. And that, my friend, is coolness you can’t buy. (But you can sell.)

Posted by C-Monster.


  1. Marshall

    I can totally hear the sound of the “Let’s call the online store a bodega” meeting and it’s like the sound a sack filled with cats, babies and aluminum foil being crushed in an industrial size trash compactor. Please make it stop.

  2. Matt

    Now I’ll never know if I’m drinking colt 45 ironically or not. Plus they leave out the best part bottle returns are 25 cents!

  3. A. Yauch

    How’d they forget the OJ, yo? Who cares what Colt 45 tastes like when Brass Monkeys taste like Oranjina. Alcoholic Oranjina…