Working in an industry that relies on advertising and marketing for its existence, I tend to pay a little closer attention to the ads on the radio and television. Right now, there are a couple of ads running that are very good--and deserve some credit.
One of the ads is the Johnson and Johnson campaign saluting nurses. My favorite is the one where the male nurse is singing the "Name Game" with a little girl while administering her chemotherapy treatment. There is another one where an African-American nurse is dealing with emergency patients and offering comfort to those who are obviously in pain and very scared.
What makes these ads great is that they capture the passion and compassion that many in the nursing field have (and almost need to have) for those they serve. I watch those spots and I think "Man, I wish so much of our health care spending wasn't going to breast augmentations, viagara, botox treatments, facelifts, holistic hokery, pills to make your eyelashes thicker, laser tooth whitening, abortions and lyposuction so that we could afford to pay these nurses more."
Another ad I like a lot is for the Special Olympics. It begins with an empty gym with the sound of a bouncing basketball. Then you see a heart and other internal organs--which develop into a skeleton--then muscles are added, followed by skin and clothes until you realize the basketball player is a young man with developmental disabilities. The ad ends with the statement "See the athlete--not the person".
The message there is pretty clear: just because Special Olympians have challenges to deal with every day, these people really aren't that much different than the rest of us. A message that President Obama didn't learn until his campaign three years ago. You may recall the joke he tried to make after a disastrous bowling photo-op--where he quipped he bowled like "the Special Olympics."
I'm going to appreciate these effective, positive ad campaigns as much as possible over the next few days--before the millions of dollars worth of State Senate recall election ads begin airing and make me wish I didn't own a TV or a radio.