Talk To Frank is an anti-drugs campaign in the United Kingdom that has been running for the longest time. Has it managed to get people to quit substance abuse?
Drug education in the UK was changed forever ten years ago when a Swat team raided a quiet suburban kitchen. Out went horrid notices of how medications could "mess you up" and sincere appeals to oppose the vile pushers prowling in each play area. A sort of comedy was also brought into the message in the bid to pass it appropriately.
In the first ad, a mother suggests to her teenage son that they have a chat about drugs so he calls the police snatch squad. But the new information being passed is: "Drugs are illegal. Talking about them isn't. So, Talk to Frank."
Frank: Friendly Confidential Drug Advice
Frank, the new identity for the National Drugs Helpline, was coined by the advertising agency Mother. It was supposed to be the symbol of a reliable older brother that younger individuals can go to for guidance regarding illegal substances. Frank is has become a household name among the young people due to the many adventure stories that came from the theme such as Pablo the drugs mule dog to a tour of the brain warehouse.
According to Justin Tindall, creative director of Leo Burnett ad agency, the most important thing is that no one could accuse frank of trying to be "down with the kids," or coming out with the wrong attire. Even the sham Frank videos on YouTube are moderately deferential. One more thing that distinguishes Frank from other government-funded campaigns is that nothing links the ad to the government in anyway whatsoever.
Teaching people about drugs is now approached in a different way, not like the days of Nancy Reagan in the UK and the cast of Grange Hill in the UK, who told us to "Just Say No" to drugs; it is evident this did not work.
Most promotions in Europe now concentrate, similar to Frank, on attempting to give fair-minded data to help youngsters settle on their own choices. In places that have harsh penalties for being in possession, pictures/photos of prison cells and embarrassed parents remain common. You play, you pay. is the ad used to warn young people going for night clubbing in Singapore.
Above the Influence is a campaign that mixes jokes and warning stories that the federal government has been using in the UK for a long time; it also offers positive alternatives to drugs. One ad shows a group of "stoners" sitting on a sofa and emphasizes talking to young people in the language of their generation. Though, an unexpected number of anti-drug campaigns all over the globe still resort back to strategies intended to arouse fear or alarm, specifically the substance-fuelled plunge to hell. The DrugsNot4Me series recently launched a commercial in Canada that shows a beautiful, self-assured young lady metamorphosis after using "drugs" into a shaking, hollow-eyed mess.
A study carried out in the UK on anti-drugs campaign that ran between 1999 and 2004 shows that adverts that portray the negative results of drug use influence vulnerable youth to try out with the drugs.
Frank was ground-breaking and criticised by Conservative politicians at the time because they felt it suggest that there were some good things to go along with all the bad about drugs.
"Cocaine makes you feel on top of the world" was used in one of the early internet ad campaigns.
It wasn't at all times simple to balance the message correctly. The person behind this cocaine ad has said that he now thinks he thought the average person browsing the web had a longer attention span. There will be many who could not have seen the adverse effects of the drugs at the end of the animation. However, Powell claims the objective was to be more open with youngsters regarding substances, in an attempt to form the credibility of the Frank image.
A 67% of the youth say they would ask Frank for advice related to drugs according to the Home Office. 225,892 calls were made to the Frank helpline and 3,341,777 visits to the site in 2011/12. For him, this shows that the campaign is very successful.
Though, like with any other anti-drug media campaign around the globe, there's no proof that Frank has stopped people to use substances.
Drug usage in the UK has gone around 9% in the decade since the conflict propelled, yet specialists say quite a bit of this is down to a decrease in cannabis utilization, potentially connected to changing states of mind towards smoking tobacco among youngsters.
What Is Frank?
FRANK is a national drug education program that was established at the Home Office of the British Government and the Department of Health in 2003. FRANK's vision is to equip the youth with the bold facts and knowledge about the legal and illegal use of narcotics to reduce the drug use. FRANK has run lots of media campaigns on radio and the internet.