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A bottle of Budweiser beer at a bar in New York City. - 

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BILL RADKE: As part of a new marketing campaign next week, Budweiser will hand out free brewskis in bars and restaurants nationwide. The company's trying to attract younger drinkers, who've been giving Bud a pass in favor of trendier beers.

Marketplace's Mitchell Hartman has more.


MITCHELL HARTMAN: Maybe the ad with the sappy music and cute Clydesdale colt isn't the best way to attract hip young beer-drinkers. Bud sales are down nearly 10 percent. So all next week free Budweiser will flow in trendy pubs and restaurants where young people hang out -- and where Bud isn't usually a top pick.

JOSHUA BERNSTEIN: People in their early 20s, they have so many options right now.

Joshua Bernstein writes the "Beer of the Week" blog at SlashFood.com. He says it'll be hard for a big brewery to muscle in on the more expensive microbrews that young drinkers like.

BERNSTEIN: People want quality, they're not going for a six-pack of Budweiser. They're going for craft beers.

And craft beer sales keep pouring it on -- up 7 percent last year, while overall beer sales fell. Bud's new marketing campaign includes a TV-ad blitz, and free beer for Facebook users on their birthdays.

I'm Mitchell Hartman for Marketplace.

Follow Mitchell Hartman at @entrepreneurguy