When your audience can’t tell if you’re joking or serious regarding a public health crisis…you’ve failed. And in the case of South Dakota, their attempt at timeless, “Got Milk?” simplicity – they missed the mark and made National Headlines for all the wrong reasons.
“Meth, We’re On It” fails the state of South Dakota on so many levels:
- Tourism: Who would want to miss visiting that place!?
- Tone of Voice: It’s not delivered in the voice of the region. It sounds like a wise-cracking city slicker from the North East.
- Governor’s Administration: A negative depiction of their competencies and understanding of the needs of their constituents – and yet, in a one-party state like South Dakota she, or her party, will be re-elected.
How can you avoid headline-worthy failures such as this?
- Know your audience and hear the message in their own voice. Be aware of all the positive and negative ways messaging could be received.
- Know what challenges your company and/or product is going to solve and ask if this is the lasting impression you want to leave.
- Test, test, and test again before going wide. Trust us, it’s worth it!