“It can wait” PSA Campaign

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Marketers have a lot of power to influence consumers habits – not only what the consumers buy, but also what the consumers do.  Think about the various public service campaigns that are around us – littering, drinking, driving, smoking, texting, and more. Each topic has PSA campaigns that try to reach the affected audience and influence behaviors.

One of today’s important and timely topics is texting and driving. More than 75% of teens say that texting and driving is common in their group. According to the National Safety Council, more than 100,000 crashes each year are attributed to texting and driving. It’s a significant problem in today’s “always connected” world where people think they need to always be on-line, no matter what they are doing or where they are.

To combat the problem of texting while driving, AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, and Sprint have teamed together to produce a joint campaign called “It can wait.” The collaboration has designed a new Web site, complete with pledge, information, a texting-while-driving simulator, and 35-minute documentary film by Werner Herzog.

Watch the video. Take the pledge. Make the roads a little safer.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss public service announcement (PSA) campaigns. What makes them effective? What are some of the difficult issues developing PSA campaigns.
  2. Poll students: What are some of the issues that they have seen PSA campaigns for? What are some issues that could use better PSA campaigns?
  3. Show the “It can wait” Web site: http://www.itcanwait.com/
  4. What are the effective elements of this site? What is not effective?
  5. Have students run the “texting & driving simulator” at bottom of page.
  6. Divide students into teams. Have each team select an issue that could benefit from a PSA.
  7. Have each team develop a PSA campaign for the topic. What are the key elements? Who is the target market? What is the key message?

Source:  Brandchannel.com, 8/12/13

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