AARP “Divided We Fail”

Talk about scare tactics. The AARP’s latest “Divided we fail” effort by GSD&M Idea City is enough to make a person take a real interest in national healthcare reform. Of course, that’s the whole point of the campaign, which includes a TV and Web effort focused on the harrowing tales of real people who go broke — or worse — trying to pay medical bills for themselves and their loved ones. TV ads drive viewers to dividedwefail.org, where more detailed stories of misery and despair await. One Web scenario, typical of the lot, opens on the face of a worried middle-aged guy and includes the text: “1.85 million Americans go bankrupt due to medical bills in one year. Dennis is one of them.” The grim, heavy-handed nature of this stuff makes it all the more effective at delivering the organization’s message with lead-pipe impact. In fact, these ads make me wish Congress would enact some reforms already so the client could end this appeal and we wouldn’t have to suffer through this campaign. And I mean that as praise. I think. –David Gianatasio