Gun Violence Prevention – Every Gun Has a HistoryIn Commercial, Marketing
States United To Prevent Gun Violence has done something that a smart business person probably wouldn’t think to do… They opened a gun shop in NYC inviting first time gun buyers to come in and get help choosing their protection of choice. What the unsuspecting new gun owners didn’t know were two pretty powerful things:
- Each Gun had a tag describing a mass killing, murder, suicide or, most commonly, an accidental killing of a family member that each gun was part of.
- This was all captured on hidden cameras.
The power of this ad is seeing the faces of the people as they realize that the gun they are about to buy was the same gun that a 5 year old used to kill his 9 month old sister, or that a 2 year old accidentally shot her mom with.
Now, before anyone goes off the charts screaming about good safety and having a gun being the safest way to defend yourself, let me stop you there to say that gun safety or no, accidents do happen, and they’re more common than most people care to admit, and no matter how safe you are, the fact is that you are carrying a deadly weapon. Yes, there are safety rules to follow, and many people who are MILITANT about it can keep their firearm safe and away from children, but the point of the ad is more in the spirit of truth that one accident is all you get. There are no warnings.
The ad seeks to debunk the myth that a gun makes a home safer. This is a belief held by 6 in 10 % of Americans, but some studies indicate that owning a gun increases the risk of not only accidental shooting death, but also death during an assault. (see the paper here showing that gun owners are approximately 5 times more likely to be shot fatally during an assault: PAPER) While bravado and machismo claim that “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.” – NRA Executive Vice President Wayne Lapierre. The numbers indicate something otherwise and this ad is trying to raise awareness of that fact.
Firearm enthusiasts will most likely hate this ad, and I’m sure I’ll take a lot of heat for loving the delivery of the message, but it is a GREAT social experiment. And don’t think I am a gun hater. I have many friends and family who are hunters and enthusiasts alike and I have been target shooting many times and enjoy it. I simply love the way that this ad has put forth the facts in an emotional way. They have told a story with impact.
What They Did Right:
This is raw. It’s real people reacting to statistics around shooting deaths presented in a unique way. I think that they were extremely smart to choose NYC as the location of their gun store. That location definitely had an effect on the outcome of the ad. Strategically perfect. If you’d have tried this where I live, in the heart of South Dakota, where Hunters are our number two tourist import, I imagine the outcome would have been vastly different.
What They Did Wrong:
I don’t have much criticism here. I’m very happy that they caught the reactions as well as the exit interview as the people were leaving.
Whether you are pro gun or not, enthusiast or not, this ad is definitely a fantastic strategic video.
The link that States United to Prevent Gun Violence is sending people to is here:
They definitely set out to #DoGoodWork…will you?
PS. What do you think of the ad? Was it effective? Offensive? Something else…I’d love to hear from you.