How to get someone to change their behavior? Rule 1: don’t preach

This is not your average wear-your-seatbelt spot. It is an elegant short film about how families connect us, why we care about them, and how they nurture us. And oh yeah, after watching it you’ll never not buckle your seatbelt again. We can all learn how to teach from this beautiful work. Rule 2: remind me why I care. Rule 3: touch my heart, not my mind.

The spot was developed by the UK’s Sussex Safer Road Partnership and created by writer/director Daniel Cox. The Osocio blog quotes him as saying: “It was central to the development of the project that we root the concept of wearing a seat belt firmly in the family domain, and create the advert so that it could be viewed by anyone of any age. Children are so important as opinion formers within their family that we felt it imperative to have a child take a pivotal role in relaying our message. ”

“One key aspect to the storytelling is that we developed Embrace Life to be non-language specific, so that the message wouldn’t become lost when viewed by visitors to, or residents of, the UK where English might not be their first language.”

The creative directive that the spot be understood in any language helped the director find a universal truth that binds us all. As they say, talk is cheap.

(Thanks to friend and colleague Jamie Wolf for the referral.)

This post originally appeared on Here It Is Tomorrow Again, a blog I posted between 2009 and 2011.



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