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Smokey Bear gets an update in new campaign with a social TV twist

“Only YOU can prevent wildfires” still strongly resonates, but for what audience? This is the question that Draftcb attempted to tackle on behalf of the Ad Council and the U.S. Forest Service in bringing back to life Smokey BearIn the new campaign, which includes TV, print, digital and radio, Smokey isn’t conceived of as a computer character anymore, but as a loveable, fire-preventing bear who is celebrating and rewarding people who act safely with fire. Smokey communicates this by giving out “bear hugs.”

In the new campaign, which includes TV, print, digital and radio, Smokey isn’t conceived of as a computer character anymore, but as a loveable, fire-preventing bear who is celebrating and rewarding people who act safely with fire. Smokey communicates this by giving out “bear hugs”.

While the campaign will continue to speak to the older generation by retaining the “Only YOU can prevent wildfires” tagline, there is also a social TV aspect to the campaign to appeal to Millenials less familiar with Smokey. The official hashtag of the campaign is #smokeybearhugs, which has already begun to take off on Twitter.

There is also a strong educational aspect to the PSAs. In each TV spot, context is given to exactly how to prevent wildfires. Since 9 out of 10 wildfires are accidentally started by humans, Smokey’s message is as relevant as ever.

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