Last year the National Football League (NFL) pledged $25 million to the National Domestic Violence Hotline to help raise awareness about domestic violence. It was a partnership rooted in mutual interest. The organization's hotline experienced an 84% increase in calls, due to the release of NFL player Ray Rice's domestic violence video on Sept. 8.
At the time, this was far too many calls for the organization to handle.
This year, the group is more prepared to handle the flood of calls when it releases its new Public Service Announcement (PSA) developed by Y&R Chicago.
The spot encourages victims of domestic violence to reach out and get the help they need. It show, what at first glance, looks like an ad for a cell phone with an unseen person flipping through a series of photos. Images document the story of a man and woman meeting with an initial happy courtship -- hanging out at the beach, kissing and cuddling -- that then turns dark, as the images begin to show that the woman has become increasingly withdrawn, and finally bruised and crying. The spot concludes by stating “We’re here when you’re ready.”
This provocative spot was designed to resonate with both victims and the general public.
Y&R conducted "significant testing" to find that viewers seek more realistic portrayals of relationships for an effective call-to-action. Agency executives wanted to address today's socially savvy society that presents carefully edited snippets as opposed to realities.
The spot runs across the NFL Network and nfl.com before expanding to other channels and platforms on Oct. 31.
Y&R Chicago works pro bono for the National Domestic Violence Hotline.