According to the CDC, childhood obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years.  One of every three American kids is now either overweight or obese.  The newest effort addressing the epidemic, “Healthy Habits” advertising campaign stems from a unique partnership between the Ad Council and Clear Channel Communities.

The Ad Council, a non-profit organization of volunteer advertising talent, produces, distributes and promotes public service campaigns on behalf of non-profit organizations and government agencies.  They have created many different campaigns over its 70 year history, with recent campaigns ranging from GED Achievement to Shelter Pet Adoption and Autism Awareness.  But, as this New York Times article states, the “Healthy Habits” campaign is the Ad Council’s first time running a campaign exclusively on radio and it has partnered with a media company to develop such a large initiative.

The “Healthy Habits” campaign is only the second for Clear Channel Communities—the corporate social responsibility arm of Clear Channel Media and Entertainment, which was created earlier this year and selects one organization to support per quarter.  The radio spots, five 30-second English spots and two 30-second Spanish spots, will run in all 150 markets Clear Channel radio stations serve.  With each of Clear Channel’s 850 stations running them for three months, the estimated reach of the campaign is at 237 million listeners each month.  Clear Channel’s commitment to the campaign is estimated to be $30 million in donated air time for the PSAs and digital placement on all station websites.

In a twist the ad copy remains humorous, despite addressing a serious issue.  For example one spot reads, “walk to work, walk the dog, have the dog walk you.  Take a hike, take a bike, skate, dance, hop, jump, do the humpty hump…”  Cue the revival of the Humpty Dance.  Also, the spots target adults, despite addressing childhood obesity.  The call-to-action of the end of the copy reads, “There are better ways to get your kids to eat better.  Visit iheartradio.com/healthyhabits for a free smart shopping list and lots more great tips.”  Parents, after all, are the primary agents of change for kids in America.

The radio spots have started running on all Clear Channel stations, including 93.9 Kiss FM, 100.7 The River, 106.1 Rush Radio, and G105 in the Raleigh-Durham market.

Have you heard any of the spots against childhood obesity yet?  What do you think of the new campaign?

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