Dilly Dilly is a nonsense, childish version of the expression “cheers”, and was created by a medieval themed Bud Light ad campaign.
Even though it was popularized in 2017, the term “dilly” already existed and was used in the 1930s with the meaning “delightful” or “delicious”.
Also, in the late 1990s and early 2000s the word was used to mean “deal”, especially in the greeting “what’s the dilly, yo?”.
In general, the phrase by itself describes “fun time”.
Origin of the term
However, amongst the meanings already listed in the Meaning section seems to have no conscious association with Bud Light’s “dilly dilly”.
The advertisement, titled Banquet, was released in August 2017 and was created by Wieden+Kennedy.
The plan behind the ad was to parody the famous tv show, Game of Thrones. In the video, each of the three subjects give the king a gift.
The first two propose to give Bud Light, to which the King lifts his beverage and shouts “dilly dilly!”, after which the others around the table are joining him in the toast.
Spread of the term
The humorous phrase went viral around the professional sport seasons in the fall of 2017.
Thanks to the success of the original ad, Bud Light made a follow-up ad in late 2017 and
also made a third one for the purpose of Super Bowl LII, in early 2018.
“Dilly dilly” is often seen in numerous image macros, mostly online, and particularly among sports fans.