Milwaukee Non-Profit Agency Serves Teens a Plate of Reality

By Matt Van Hoven 

Milwaukee is full of advertising agencies, but only one of them is set up as a non-profit (that we know of, there could be others). Serve Marketing is that agency, and it was started by a guy named Gary Mueller (pronounced Miller, he’s the ECD at BVK). Full disclosure: I volunteered there once back in 2006, but don’t really talk to those folks anymore. Recently, the agency punk’d Milwaukee’s slutty teens by luring them into a movie that was really a PSA warning them about how much it sucks to have a kid.

Basically, Serve treated the campaign for The United Way like a movie release, running TV, outdoor, radio, social media and a Web site (semi-intense trailer tk) for a fake movie they invented called ‘2028’. The pay off: when kids showed up at the theatre, they were fooled and had to watch a “don’t have the sex” ad instead. Ha ha, suckers! There is a god.

The film was billed as a Milwaukee-only screening with one premiere. A Facebook page for the ‘movie’ plays host to varied comments, some expressing anger at the ruse, some indifference, others lauding it. The payoff is an info site called BabyCanWait where teens can learn how to get contraceptives, what to do if they think they’re preggers, and a bunch of other helpful things.

Credits after the jump.

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Client: United Way of Greater Milwaukee
Creative Director: Gary Mueller
Writer: Ross Lowinske
Art Director: Brent Goral, Ryan Smith
Interactive: Ben Grey
Director: Carlo Besasie
Agency Producer: Darlene Stimac
Assciate Producer: Amanda Ruffalo
Edit: Don Unverrich/Dave Kuhnen
Audio: Peter Batchelder (Independent)
Acct Team: Heather Aldrich, Brittin Haury

Fun fact: Gary Mueller used to have a circa 1985 Chevy S-10 front end for a desk, which he bought from a farmer.