Quick quiz: What is more likely to disarm people; laughter or sadness? With whom would you prefer to be friends: the funny girl or the serious girl? Anyhoo…
We were delighted to see this community service announcement (CSA) by the Australian Cancer Research Foundation back on our screens. It’s a deliberately light-hearted approach to raising donations for cancer research.
Whenever we market or communicate it’s easy to slip into a default mode; usually one that is serious, worthy … and bland. When dealing with cancer it is even easier to play things straight. This CSA is an intelligent step away into less populated territory.
We’ve talked before about choosing brand values. The underlying values that this CSA gave us at Hootville: savvy, contemporary, knowledge-based, research-driven. These are great values as they set ACRF apart, carving out a position that is less competitive. There are already a plethora of medical charities vying for our heartstrings, this CSA is aiming for the right frontal lobe where the brain processes humour.
It also defies the advice that we need to meet a person and hear a story. Frankly the machine in the closing shot plays the role of hero very well. Go machine! Faster, faster! That machine gave us hope and hope is vital if you want people to take action.
Kudos to the ACRF board for realising that a humourous approach may be the way to people’s wallets – and thus new treatments. Corporate know this very well.
Hepatitis Australia has recently launched this CSA starring mascot O’Liver. Again, they have taken a light-hearted approach to liver disease which is not exactly a laugh-o-matic issue.
Flashmobs have their critics but O’Liver’s smile cannot be denied. Brett (left in dark suit) met O’Liver (right in red Spandex) at a World Hepatitis day event he emceed last year in Sydney. Brett reports that “The O” is a charming organ. “Larger than life,” was how Brett described him. Indeed.
Finally witness these two differing examples from two US police departments on the recruitment bandwagon. Chalk and cheese and hilarious.