What do you think of Social Farting?

Public service announcements in the talking-head format rarely work on YouTube. They are usually too long, too boring and feel too preachy.Ā  This new video from the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care takes a different route to challenge social smoking:

If you only fart with friends, you’re not a farter. You’re just a social farter and that makes it OK. https://www.facebook.com/quitthedenial

There are 2 other campaign videos, check out Ear Wax Picker and Social Nibbler.
  • How effective is this sort of campaign?
  • Is humour an appropriate route?
  • What do you think of the comments on the video? Are they an indicator of impact?
  • Does info-tainment work?
  • Did you giggle-out-loud? šŸ™‚

What are your experiences with video campaigns? What tips do you have for us and others?


11 responses to “What do you think of Social Farting?

    • So this is interesting at least. As for effectiveness, I guess it depends on the audience. If the target market is young 20s, late teens, this might work. I find the humour gap really big these days when it comes to age. And humour is always tricky – and risky – for this reason. It appeals to people from differently depending on age, culture, etc.

      • Thanks for your thoughts Mary Margaret! Agreed, the humour-style of the target audience is important otherwise the mark will be missed, or may even come off as cheesey or misplaced. Great points about audience diversity.

  1. The social farting is very funny but the social nibbler not very. It’s good to speak about social smoker and how it is a ridiculous expression but I don’t find this kind of campaign efficient.

    • Hi Fanny! Thanks for your comments. I thought the social farting was funnier than the social nibbler too šŸ˜‰ Any specific reasons why you find this campaign inefficient?

      • Not efficient because at the end I don’t see how smoking a cigarette time to time is bad for the health, maybe this video needs more facts/numbers ? What do you think ?

      • That’s an interesting point. There are several arguments to both points. Through my video ad watcing experiences, a humour-based ad tends not to be peppered with stats, whereas a factual or alarming ad is. I guess the realitiy is humour effects some personalities and shocking numbers impacts other types of audiences. Would be interesting to know what their success indicators are. Thanks for your thoughts!!

  2. Another great comment via Twitter from @Alicia_Cowan: I’m a little late on the reply but LOVED it! Brilliant, edgy. Not sure if it would affect a male audience though.

  3. Pingback: Why Public Health PSAs Don’t Go Viral. | Public Health and Social Media·

  4. Loved the humour BUT the fastest growing segment of smokers is blue collar white males 19-24. There’s late adoption of smoking behaviour which is probably more tied to blue-collar peer pressure from older, smoking peers than transition from social smokers. OR the result of pot smokers needing to do something with their hands and mouths that appears legal — that would be a worthy angle to examine. So the farter spot creates buzz and social sharing (and is surprisingly hysterical to me when I know I’m not the desired target). But it may not achieve a requisite reduction in smoking rates or at least reductions in the right spots.

    The nibbler ad just plain sucks … in the same painful way that a having a conversation with a socially-unaware human does. Or watching Seinfeld.

    • Janet!! Glad to see you weigh in. Very interesting points on peer pressure of the fastest growing smokers’ group. Your experience with the humour seems to be in line with the social commentary on their FB page – non-smokers think it’s hilarious and smokers are up in arms wanting government to ‘butt out’ and find the humour patronizing.

      šŸ˜‰ I am one of the few spirits wandering around having never watched a full episode of Seinfeld!

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