ASPCA Digital Ad Campaign Serves Cause

While I was not shy to express my disappointment with the ASPCA x Forever 21 line of t-shirts, credit is due for their digital advertising campaign.

As to when these ads began running online, I do not know. Since I do not enjoy voicing negativity regarding such causes, I may have been in a unique position to notice these ads.

The organization’s television commercials are well known. Celebrities, like Sarah McLachlan, with a dog or cat pleading for a nominal donation, have never moved me to action. I may like the particular person or ‘aww’ at the animal, but the inconvenience fosters procrastination…and we tend to know where that leads…or rather does not lead.

Branching out to the web is a wise move on the ASPCA’s part. Even when the commercials promt to call or go online, they still require to complete an action you are not necessarily involved in. Clicking on a banner and having it appear in a new tab or window is much easier and convenient.

The first of these ads that caught my attention was in the sidebar of my inbox. The repetition with which I saw these ads, though, could be an issue for the organization. While some may feel guilted over numerous views, more likely users will become 1) annoyed or 2) (and worse) numb to excessive ads.

Of the ads I viewed across a few different sites, most effective for me were, what I’ll call “pricing the animal” and “equating,” versus the “sad face.” In those with “60” cents rivaling the size of the animal, while slightly reminding me of cell phone ads, they emphasize the nominal cost in comparison to the benefactor’s size; like a Super Size My Donation effect.

Fewer “equating” ads appeared than the other two, but the vibrant coloring and message were the most engaging and thought-provoking. Cause really, people pay how much for a coffee?

You be the judge.


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