Every possible method of convincing young people to drive slower and more carefully has been done. Everything from light humor to horrifically gut-wrenching emotional manipulation has been put to use. Does any of it work? You'll have to ask the statisticians for the answer to that questions.
In an update to the Ad Council's Youth Reckless Driving Prevention campaign, Y&R New York is out with four new commercials which involve the goofball "teenage friend" joining a threesome in a car and, through different tactics, convince the kids to slow down. They're quite tame compared to many of the more extreme examples we've seen.
One might say they were lame but they are so ingratiatingly squirm-inducing, they just might keep people's attention long enough to garner at least a tiny bit of consideration.
To make kids act more energy-smart, the Department of Energy launched Lose Your Excuse, a painfully cute website* that encourages engagement and boasts a 10-step energy "action plan" to download.
Two quirky little ads drive traffic in its direction. Each features a kid getting caught in a lie about why s/he hasn't become more energy efficient. (I know that vibes like the Spanish Inquisition, but the execution is feel-good and funny).
Hmm. So Crispin Porter + Bogusky asks the Coen Brothers to do a spot for their client, The Reality Coalition, to poke fun at the notion there's such a thing as clean coal. Aside from the irony of the word "coal" being in the cause group's name, the Coen Brothers do an OK job withe the cheesy spokesman approach.
In the commercial, the spokesman says, "clean coal harnesses the awesome power of the word clean," as the wife half of the couple he's speaking to sprays black clouds out of an aerosol can. Complete with coughing kids, the spots also claims "clean goal is supported by the coal industry, the most trusted name in coal."
You see? Just like the word clean guarantees your clothes will be clean in laundry detergent ads, the word clean in clean coal ads assures the same, right?
With help from Cactus, ONE Step focuses on protecting the health of young children by encouraging smoker parents to go outside before lighting up.
The narration is soothing and the message doesn't direct smoking wholesale, although the smoke dragons and flesh-eating ravens -- which malevolently circle and eventually engulf the kiddies -- make things just uncomfortable enough.
We'll step outside, and we don't even have kids. Though this doesn't provide a gameplan for what to do when little kids walk by, but hey, those ones aren't yours.*
More on this at raisesmokefreekids.com.
Want to help fight global poverty on Twitter? Just tweet the hashtag #apowerfulnoise anytime from March 2nd to March 5th, and NCM Fathom will donate $.10 for up to 50,000 Tweets to CARE, the organization working to end global poverty.
Oh and to promote the documentary, A Powerful Noise.
Sound good? Oh wait, where's George Parker when we need someone to crap on all things Twitter?
The Partnership for a Drug-Free America enlisted Avenue A/Razorfish to help it talk to parents about talking to their kids about drugs, I guess because the Patsy angle didn't go over so well. (Actually, this probably didn't either.)
Don't Sound Like Your Parents is the fruit of this partnership. It plays with out-of-touch parental camp ("You don't need drugs for excitement -- you can help me dust!") but it's also really candid. (Video reels depict Boomer parents that generally meant well, but for the most part failed to adequately deliver the drug talk. But hey, like the sex talk, it's a tough topic to scale.)
Trapped. Unable to escape. Unable to control your self. Helpless. Dignity stolen. Dreams evaporated. Life as you know it, over.
Nothing but you, your wheelchair and your life...such as it has become...locked in a prison. With no escape.
There are powerful PSAs and then there is this PSA for the Motor Neurone Disease Association.
If the International Fund for Animal Welfare had their way, Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey wouldn't have elephants in their circus. You wouldn't find them in zoos. And they certainly wouldn't be making landings like a jumbo jet returning from an overseas flight.
But, that's exactly what happens in this commercial which informs us that animals are not souvenirs.
But, wait. Is it OK to use elephants in television commercials? Or is that just effective CGI at work?
- There's been movies about boxing. There's been movies about wrestling. Now there's a movie about...wait for it...arm wrestling. Well at least they didn't name it Pulling Johnson.
- Urinal advertising is alive and well as illustrated by these ads
at last week's SMX Search Marketing Cnference in Santa Clara.
- Complete with PeeWee Herman's "Don't Do Crack," The Huffington Post has collected the Nine Weirdest PSAs Ever Made.
- There are five days left to enter the 2009 One Show Interactive and One Show Design. Although the One Show call for entries is now closed, the deadline for Interactive and Design is February 27, 2009.
- Ogilvy does its part for diversity.
- The AD Club is organizing their second All-Access Pass of the Year. The event will be at McCann Erickson on Tuesday March 10 from 6-8 pm, featuring a "roundtable" with Chief Technology Strategist, Faris Yakob.
- RevenueScience is changing its name to AudienceScience.
Hoping to battle the apparent escalation of violence in Vancouver and to encourage people to come forward if they have information about criminal activity, a new pro bono PSA campaign from DDB Canada informs, "You remain anonymous, criminals don't."
The out of home and print campaign for Greater Vancouver Crime Stoppers depicts crimes in progress with the criminal in focus and the victims and witnesses pixelated which supports the campaign's tagline.
Explaining the strategy behind the creative, DDB Canada Creative Director Dean Lee said, "Pixelation is instantly recognized and commonly associated with the reporting of criminal activity. But this time it's used to illustrate the anonymity of providing crime-solving tips. People need to realize their tips are completely anonymous, that tipsters have nothing to fear and can make a real difference in helping make Vancouver a safer city to live in."
We like the simplicity of the campaign. It's not over-engineered and it, both visually and sith copy, makes the point quickly.