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How Effective Are Safety Campaigns?

For decades, safety campaigns have been designed to bring awareness of safety issues to the forefront. A case in point is that of seatbelts. Before the 60s, seatbelts were not at all popular on most cars. Legislation making them standard on cars did not go into effect until January of 1968 and seatbelt law making seatbelt use mandatory for drivers and front seat passengers was not enacted until 1983.

During the years seatbelts were not mandatory, there were seatbelt safety campaigns which encouraged the use of seatbelts. The campaigns were very effective in promoting the wearing of seatbelts.

What Makes an Effective Safety Campaign?

Like any advertisement campaign, identifying and reaching the target market is critical. According to the National Institutes of Health, media-based education and enforcement campaigns are key in creating change.  An effective safety campaign will educate people, inform them of the necessity of the change, and persuade them to make the change.

Researchers have concluded it’s not just the persuasive public service announcement that makes a safety campaign effective. According to the World Health Organization, road safety campaigns are effective when used along with legislation and law enforcement.

Establishing a Baseline of Behavior

In order to determine if a safety campaign is effective or not, there has to be an established baseline of current behaviors. This will help identify changes as a result of the safety campaign. In the example of seatbelt safety, knowing approximately how many people used or didn’t use seatbelts before the campaign was important. Once that figure was determined, then it could be compared with usage after the campaign was implemented. Without a baseline, determining the effectiveness of any given safety campaign is all but impossible.

Getting the Message Across

There are a few basic ingredients necessary to get the message across to your audience. The first thing is to keep it simple. The language used should be easily understood and the message should be brief. You don’t need to make a long complicated message to get the point across. Make it memorable. Using a picture, whether visual or with words, is important in getting the message to stick. Use concrete information. Include examples if possible.

People are drawn to stories. This method of communicating a message has been used for millennia and is still effective today. Stories can be very powerful tools. When done right, a story facilitates an emotional connection, which can drive the point home.

When the right ingredients are used, safety campaigns can be very effective. They can provide the impetus for people to make lasting changes, leading to healthier lives and safer living. At Frohlich, Gordon & Beason, P.A., we encourage our friends, family, and clients to pursue those things that add value to and enhance the quality of life. We are known for our excellence and caring in assisting people with personal injury cases. Residents of the southwest Florida area, including Port Charlotte, North Port, and Englewood, can depend on us for reliable, effective legal services. Contact us for a complimentary consultation about your case.

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