Baby Talk

There’s no football coach exhorting his team to victory or students preparing lab experiments in a new TV spot for Pennsylvania State University.

The 30-second spot, by goose in Philadelphia, takes a less familiar approach to inform prospective students and their parents about the school’s programs. The ad, which broke late last month, shows babies as copy describing their potential college majors appears beside them.

Popping up by one child, who is playing with blocks, is the word “Architect.” Another baby, who cries and then abruptly stops, is labeled “Actress.” A third, who throws a block rather unconvincingly: “Quarterback.”

A voiceover says, “With over 160 different majors, Penn State is the perfect university to follow your destiny, whatever it appears to be.” The work retains the tagline: “Making life better.”

“The strategy was more inherently academic, rather than football,” said Kelly Simmons, shop cd/copywriter. She added that to convey the message to parents and their teen agers, the spot uses “a universal kind of humor.”

The ad is running during national and regional college-football programming—with airtime provided by the NCAA—on ABC and ESPN. The shop has also created a second, similar spot.