The latest news of linebacker Jovan Belcher has left Kansas City Chiefs with a flood of media. Not only are there positive and negative stories, but more outsiders have begun linking this incident to other issues. The New York Times reported from the scientific journal Brain, that 33 cases of NFL players after death were diagnosed with brain damage from concussions. PR Daily states, “The NFL now has to address whether it relates to the dangerous life of profession football players, and what the organization can do to safeguard the health and well-being of other players.”
The NFL needs to address this issue and immediately do something about it. The safety of these players continues to rest in their hands. Already players have been unhappy with their efforts. “The NFL is the target of federal lawsuits by more than 3,700 former players who allege that for decades the league failed to protect them from concussions and their long-term effects” ( PR Daily).
The Chiefs are doing a good job by addressing the importance of domestic violence, but I hope they continue to take care of their players as well.
It all began this morning when I read a mutual friend’s Facebook post. “I can’t believe it. Pope Benedict the XVI has a twitter account!”
Was this really true? Could the Roman Catholic Pope really be tweeting about his daily affirmations? As a young Catholic I’ll be honest, I’m quite disturbed. I hardly ever tweet, but now the Pope does? I currently feel, this won’t go over well. Ragan’s PR Daily already comments about the issue, “Naturally, there have been an insane amount of hateful tweets directed toward the account already. By the looks of posts tagged #askpontifex, the Vatican social media team is going to have a tough time sifting through them to find any legitimate questions. The first comment that popped up was from “America’s transgender sweetheart,” asking whether the pope had seen any of her videos.”
I guess his twitter could be a good way of aiding the public (people enjoy spiritual messages), but I can’t imagine the Pope came up with the idea himself. The man is over 80 years old for crying out loud! Hopefully the account can be taken seriously by outside tweeters. I hope the best for the Pope!
Documentary: An Inconvenient Truth
Directed by: Davis Guggenheim
This documentary is based on Al Gore’s campaign to make global warming a recognized problem worldwide. There have been assumptions that because of the size of our world, we can’t have an effect on global warming. This film strives to address these false beliefs. With tons of scientific research, Gore begins the documentary explaining the process of global warming. Our world is producing excess carbon dioxide in the air and heat is reflected back down to earth causing temperature, wind, storms, etc. to increase. This will create potentially life-threatening circumstances. So, according to the film, we must fix problems now.
“What we take for granted might not be here for our children.” Gore makes this powerful statement after talking about his childhood on a ranch. On his family farm, the leaves blew in the trees and the creek water ran so gracefully. He often still enjoys spending time in nature, but is saddened by our world’s efforts to maintain nature’s context.
As I listened to Gore’s statistics and records of our past and current standings, I couldn’t help but think in what ways this film was applied to me. Yes, Gore is making me very aware of this issue, however like mentioned in class, awareness doesn’t immediately imply actions. I certainly didn’t feel motivated to take action, especially when most of the problems are root from coalmines and other polluting industries.
Al Gore is doing a wonderful job by presenting this issue around the world. He is doing everything he can to make this problem more widely known. However, as a PR professional, it’s important to make an audience feel motivated. Yes, the film did mention buying fuel-efficient cars and recycling, but this was only flashed in the credits! Honestly, people have most likely ended the documentary by then. Statistics and research only go so far in a campaign. You must set goals, strategies, and objectives to get the job done. If Gore had only made this issue more user friendly, I would not have turned off my TV and thought, “ Hum, well let’s hope these coal mining industries start doing something soon”.
Selling condoms in the Congo
Amy Lockwood’s TED Talk on the Democratic Republic of Congo was a great example of “knowing your target audience”. Lockwood shares her journey of going to Africa and studying about safe sex. The DRC is the largest area in Africa and contributes to the five million people who have died from either war or health. Africa faces a large epidemic issue and it continues to occur today. This country has 1.3% of adults affected with HIV. It might not sound scary as a percentage, but that means 900,030 thousand individuals carry the disease.
Lockwood, explored the Congo region to find out more about prevention resources. Statistics show that although readily available, only 3% of residents in Congo use condoms. Lockwood generates three ideas from donors who package their condoms: fear, financing, and fidelity. Condom donor companies use an image such as a red ribbon and words like “Trust” to label their product. However, private companies use provocative images and wording to sell their product. Studies have shown that the private companies are getting more business and Lockwood says, “ That’s because the only thing people are thinking about is sex!”
The conclusion of this presentation is that audience is key. If the donor companies want to continue to prevent HIV, they need to change their approach and look at buyers’ interests. “It doesn’t matter what you’re selling, says Lockwood. Use messages that are going to get them to change their behavior. It might just save a life.”
I have learned the significance of a target audience for quite some time now and I’m fortunate because this concept has taken me far. A campaign, advertisement, or relationship cannot be established without knowing background information. You gain connection, trust, and most importantly sales when taking the time to identify personal needs. A company or individual will not be interested in an irrelevant idea, so be a good PR professional and be willing to accommodate people’s interests.