The Fine Line: Negative vs Positive Messaging

I was recently in Charleston, SC talking with a friend about the effectiveness of negative vs positive messaging. A local politician lost his son in a drunk driving accident, and his loss compelled him to try and educate teens on the hazards of getting behind the wheel after a few too many. One component of his campaign relied on the shock value of a vehicle destroyed in an accident. He towed it around to local schools for children and adults alike to see. His actions bothered my friend who happens to be a very protective and responsible mother of two.

These sights are always chilling; and the question is whether they are really effective? Do people tend to block out negative messages, which ultimately make them unproductive?

Marketing and advertising often rely on fear as a motivating factor. The solution to that fear is then presented – the product or service being offered. There is a fine line, and the producers of this commercial walked it admirably.

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