This. Is. Genius. You all know how giddy I get when someone really nails a marketing piece that truly inspires change…and boy do I have a treat for you today, courtesy of the American Heart Association. Get ready to bust out your best Travolta moves, cuz this is gonna get disco….
I was a lifeguard for most of my teenage life, and did a LOT of training on how to save someone’s life who wasn’t breathing. It was a lot of steps, and I’ve often wanted to take a refresher course. But like so many other life-saving tasks, they always fall to the bottom of the to-do list. This video now saves me the trouble, with its easy approach to being a first responder. Just 2 steps? I can handle that. From a social change perspective, there is so much to be learned here:
# 1. Laugh, silly! OK, I think we can all agree a sudden heart attack is not hilarious. Or awesome. Or a welcome addition to a game of charades. But that doesn’t mean learning how to respond to such a dire situation can’t be. In fact, I think bystanders are more likely to respond if they have learned how to perform such a critical skill in a laid-back, enjoyable environment. It takes the drama out, and removes some of the fear around “doing it right.”
#2. Easy Breezy. If there’s one thing most of us would prefer NOT to suck at, it’s CPR. I mean, that’s kinda high stakes – and lacking performance could be a total downer. Margin for error is greatly decreased, however, because it’s so simple for people to learn. This video teaches us, in less than two minutes, how to save a life. Anyone who watches this video can easily remember to #1: Call 9-1-1. And #2: Push hard and fast in the center of the chest. (and if you question the proper tempo, just pump your hands to the beat of Stayin’ Alive)
#3. Characters welcome. And they don’t need to be famous, like Ken Jeong. (Who, by the way, is a real medical doctor. Read his Wikipedia article – fascinating guy.) Too often PSAs and self-help videos are delivered in a monotone, serious or hyper-factual manner. Relax people! If you really want others to learn something, teach them like they were a guest in your living room. Everyday people (like you) are often the best catalysts for teaching others something important. I mean, look at reality TV as a concept…if we didn’t find our non-celeb peers so damn interesting, we’d all have a lot more time on our hands.
And there you have it, ladies and gents: Change happens. And sometimes it occurs to a funky beat, while wearing your best leisure suit.