Over the past several years, many brands have addressed the issue of texting while driving – especially among young drivers. In 2014, AT&T amplified its powerful "It Can Wait" campaign by seamlessly integrating its message into teen culture by harnessing the popularity of mobile or internet slang. However, a Zendrive study found that Americans still use their phones nearly every single time they get behind the wheel. Therefore, during Distracted Driving Awareness month, one company is targeting teens with an updated message.
According to Honda, millennial drivers have the highest rates of texting (74%) and checking social media sites (36%) while driving. In response, Honda created a parody music video titled “Designated Texter” which presents a new solution to texting while driving. The video features two teens rapping about the crucial responsibilities of a designated texter such as responding to texts, drafting creative social posts and filtering Instagram photos while the driver is focused on the road. In hopes of connecting with teen drivers, Honda ditched the “don’t text and drive” message that teens have been bombarded with in the past. There are no celebrity appearances and the video strays from the typical serious tone that this type of PSA usually embraces, making the video more relatable and less like a discussion with a parent. The video is designed for social sharing and will be accompanied by a variety of gifs and memes, which will be shared and promoted on Honda's social media channels.
Honda’s approach provides a different solution to the age old message: “Don’t text and drive.” Accepting the realistic fact that teens aren’t willing to be torn away from their mobile conversations and social media drama, Honda offered up a solution which is less restricting and still allows teens to stay connected. In this way, Honda has pushed forward an important social impact message through a deep understanding of its audience.