Friday, May 20, 2011

Steer into the Skid: Zombie Apocalypse

Thanks to Don Faulkner for the regular link as I saw this first last night on my Facebook page from a friend. If you are the Centers for Disease Control, how can you find a new way to get people to pay attention to basic preparedness?

Issue a set of guidelines on the Zombie Apocalypse.

On a weekend we are told the end of the world is neigh, here's the U.S. Government's most serious disaster response group saying tongue in cheek that you should consider preparing.

Somewhere the ghost of Mad Men past emerge from the grave to scream "NOOOOOOOOO you can't do that; use your BRAAAAAAAAIIIIIIIINNNNS."

Take your shovel, grip it firmly and take that dead man walking from the public relations' past and remove the head from the shoulders. OK, that's just zombie 101 talking, not the CDC.

What CDC did was latch onto a meme of the day -- zombie literature -- and find a way to get us all A) talking about disaster preparation and B) make something deadly serious at least have some perspective.

Be honest -- you looked at the link. You might have read a little of the material. It was written in an engaging, This is Spinal Tap mockumentary way. I bet you read most of it.

Be even more honest with yourself -- if this was about disaster tips for avoiding the great Mississippi River flood of 2011, would you have cared? We just had a major disaster drill in the state of Arkansas focused on the high likelihood of a New Madrid fault earthquake. Would the exact same general catastrophe guidelines get half the attention in the social media world if it was pitched based on that?

Think about things you want from your fans. This past year, I saw one of the best efforts on the tired old sportsmanship pregame video. Miss State took the script and set to movie clips and other against type visuals. It was odd, and it was compelling. You couldn't look away because you weren't really sure what was going to happen next. Southwest Airlines' take on the dull and boring preflight briefing video is another example.

If the goal is to get the information consumed, never overlook the opportunity to take advantage of quality satire or solid pun.

In the words of John Cleese, don't confuse solemn with serious. Trust him, he's a Python.

1 comment:

Frances said...

You should always practice extreme caution when operating a skid steer or better yet, it might be wiser to leave the operations to the hands of an expert.