The Effectiveness of Our Beloved PSAs and Commercials

7 11 2009

We’ve all heard it before. The old “everyone’s doing it,” or it will only hurt you if you don’t know what you’re doing. Well in a 2008 PSA Nascar driver, Graham Rahal made an attempt to prevent texting and driving using the emotion commonly referred to as fear in 29 seconds. This PSA, sponsored by handsonthewheel.org used statistics that support the belief that texting and driving will increase the possibility of a crash, Rahal attempted to persuade viewed to stop texting and driving. Rahal who is known for his fast driving is shown throughout the PSA whipping his race car around corners and finishing races in top place. His success as a race car driver gives the PSA an appeal to knowledge as Nascar drivers are expert drivers.

Unfortunately, for all the people trying to put a stop to texting while driving this commercial did not have an effective message. Recently while in class a toll was taken as to how many people text and drive and close to the entire class raised their hands admitting that they send the occasional LOL, smiley face while behind the wheel. The commercial which was obviously created to have an appeal for people aged 16-35 did not have an impact on its viewers. It has been over a year since the PSA was released and legislation is still being debated and passed in attempt to force people from committing this form of “suicide” and “murder” as some top legislators would like to label it.

PSAs are created with the sole purpose of getting people to change their behavior. While PSAs like the one mentioned above are not very effective, as people are stuck in their ways and to disbelief of many most youth have mastered this communication phenomena so that they can text, while driving and manage to keep their hands on the wheel, there are some PSAs that are good in invoking change. Commercials that also have a similar purpose as PSAs also have to be able to convince people to behave as they want.

One commercial from the company that we hate to love and love to eat released a commercial last year that used popular black culture to get more people thinking about their crispy, juicy mcnuggets. In this commercial where a black, male actor singles a very catchy jingle in a music video setting to a black female actress the already popular mcnugget increased its popularity

People in the commercial’s target audience of men and women ages 18-35 were constantly singing the jingle, which I am sure was planned by McDonalds. Its witty ymes and hilarious ending of “girl you got a 10 piece, don’t be stingy,” kept people thinking about McDonald’s. Even I found myself up one night searching YouTube to get a glimpse of this commercial that I had heard so much of. This commercial, which was often played late at night seduced our emotional desire for that late night snack and what would you know…McDonald’s only serves those ever so famous 10 piece mcnuggets on the late night menu.

While there are different elements that make different commercials effective the way the jingle stuck in your head and kept you thinking about McDonald’s is what made this commercial a good investment.

To view the PSA click

To view the commercial click

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