The engagement gurus at the Heritage Foundation are going for marketing gold in the race to cripple President Barack Obama’s signature health care overhaul, sounding interactive alarms against government-sponsored coverage on a towering new Times Square billboard.
Heritage strategist Genevieve Wood said the eye-catching advertisement — public relations analysts estimate that the mammoth marketing tools reach around 1.8 million passers-by each day and rake in millions of dollars in revenue from exposure-hungry organizations each year — is expected to go up Tuesday and should stay up for a month after.
“It’s not just for politicians. We want the American public to see it,” Wood told HOH of the rationale behind proselytizing in NYC instead of, say, administration-driven D.C.
The ad urges viewers to text “hazard” to a special number (33733) — attendees at a tea-party-led gathering on Capitol Hill received similar marching orders, though their password was “rally” — which triggers an auto-reply directing them to Heritage’s companion video:
“We will be able to stay in contact with them during the upcoming debate,” Wood said of the information gathering endgame.
We can’t help but wonder, however, whether Heritage considered that its outreach might be seen as just another form of ready-made entertainment.
The aforementioned area is pretty much ground zero for where fantasy directly clashes with reality, what with street performers playing (naked) cowboys and Indians, Madame Tussauds beckoning folks to sidle up to waxen doppelgangers and Ripley’s ushering skeptics through its mind-bending Odditorium.