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Serve Marketing Launches the ‘Spot Abuse Project’


Serve Marketing, the country’s only all-volunteer nonprofit ad agency, has launched a harrowing new public service campaign in Milwaukee in an attempt to combat both domestic and animal abuse.

The campaign, entitled the Spot Abuse Project, is based on research from the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys  which found that 76% of animal abusers go on to (or already) abuse a family member. By convincing more people to dial 911 to report animal abuse, Serve is hoping police will then uncover a higher number of domestic abuse cases. Since domestic abuse so often goes unreported and animal abuse is generally viewed as easier to report, Serve is hopes to benefit both animals and domestic abuse victims with the campaign.

The campaign kicks off today across television, outdoor, radio, and social media. Billboards for the campaign show pictures of abused pets next to young children with the troubling message “He’s next” or “She’s next,” imploring viewers to dial 911 to report abuse. The effort is already being lauded by domestic abuse organizations and local law enforcement, but has also met with some controversy. The outdoor campaign was originally planned to run at over 30 bus shelters in Milwaukee but was deemed “too vulgar” by the Milwaukee County Transit System.

“We’re not going to change people’s behaviors by showing warm and fuzzy pet pictures,” Serve Marketing executive director Heidi Sterricker said of the controversy. “Considering the images that are shown on magazine covers on newsstands and on the news every night what’s at stake here, I think people can handle seeing a picture of a dog with a bandage and a little blood on it if it saves a few lives.”

Credits after the jump.

Campaign Credits: Outdoor

Creative Director: Gary Mueller

AD: Scott Krahn

Writer: Gary Mueller

Photographer: Nick Collura (Collura    Creative)

Retoucher: Anthony Giacomino

Producer: Darlene Stimac

Campaign Credits: TV

Creative Director: Gary Mueller

AD: Scott Krahn

Writer: Gary Mueller

Director: Robb Fischer

Producer: Darlene Stimac

Editor: John Elmendorf  (Wonder Wonder)

Audio: Alex Smolinski (Wonder Wonder Sound)

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