New drink drive ad targets families

By Paul Harper

Photo / supplied
Photo / supplied

Family members are being urged to stop their loved ones driving drunk, in the latest New Zealand Transport Agency anti-drink driving campaign.

The Donna Time television advertisement first aired last week, and will run alongside the agency's popular Legend campaign, with billboards, radio and print adverts supporting the campaign.

NZTA says the new Donna Time campaign focuses family responsibility, taking the message beyond the "mates" scenario in Legend.

"The target audience for this campaign is the wider family of those who drink and drive, and they may well have a history of drinking and driving themselves. We want to encourage and persuade the wider family to stand up and do something to change an ingrained pattern of behaviour of those they care about," the agency says.

"We want to show them that they have a part to play in helping a drunk-driver make the right decision.

"The message we want them to take out of the advertising is that 'regardless of your own behaviour and how tricky it might feel, if someone you care about drinks and drives, do something'."

The Donna Time campaign introduces the tagline "Stop the family driving drunk. Legend."

The Legend advert, which first aired in October last year, has gone viral online, with more than 1,990,000 views on NZTA's YouTube channel.

AUT University advertising creativity programme leader Paul White doubts the advert will have the same "viral" effect of the Legend ad.

"It is impossible to say what effect it will have until it has the effect," Mr White says.

"Looking at it at this stage, it is a lot more obvious what it's about and what is trying to do [compared to the Legend ad].

"I don't think it is as engaging. Having said that, it may have the effect because it is following hard on the heels of the other one. It's like any brand in a way, you build on what you've just done.

"I doubt that will have the cut-through and the memorability of the previous one, which is a shame. Hopefully it has some positive effects."

Mr White says many family members of drink-drivers will hopefully relate to the people in the advertisement.

The ad has what one Twitter user aptly-described as an "Outrageous Fortune" feel to it, with Donna somewhat resembling the show's Cheryl West.

Mr White dismissed Donna could negatively be considered to be "nagging" the men.

"If you want to be a feminist about it - I didn't think that was true. I thought she was being very sensible, wasn't she?

"That's a mad over-reaction."

The new ad campaign was launched just before a tragic Queen's Birthday Weekend. Seven people died, including four farmhands who died when their 4x4 rolled following a drinking session at a Hawke's Bay pub.

"Ironically and tragically they may have got the depiction of what happens very correct," Mr White says of the new ad.

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