Publicis Kaplan Thaler teamed up with the the Advertising Council to launch a PSA campaign for various groups dealing with children’s learning and attention issues.
The campaign is designed to direct parents to the new website Understood.org, designed to help parents better understand their children’s issues and help them reach their full potential. In one broadcast spot, a man asks Siri, “How can I help my daughter with her reading?” and instead gets results for “Dachsund breeding.” It’s revealed at the end of the 30-second spot that the mistake was intentional: “…I was trying to show you how Sarah feels every day. Frustrating, isn’t it?” before directing him to Understood.org. Broadcast spots also appear in Spanish-language versions. While comparing problems with voice recognition software to learning and attention issues may be a bit of a stretch, it also should get the attention of parents struggling to understand their kids’ problems in school and get them to the website.
“The crux of the campaign is that understanding is everything,” Larissa Kirschner, a creative director at Publicis Kaplan Thaler, told The New York Times. “Put yourself in children’s shoes and you can truly understand their frustration. We took the cultural phenomenon of Siri, a smartphone not always getting you, as our way in.”
The campaign also includes print, radio, and outdoor elements, as well as a social initiative that includes weekly Twitter chats for parents. The website itself attempts to educate parents through a series of videos and interactive experiences designed to simulate the experiences of children with learning and attention issues.