WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A billboard that says “Don’t get vaccinated” went viral across social media last weekend.
- North Carolina residents saw the billboard on a funeral-home truck, which is intended to encourage more people to get vaccinated in a paradoxical approach.
- The ‘funeral home’s website listed on the truck has one message: “Get vaccinated now. If not, see you soon.”
A ‘reverse psychology’ styled digital billboard went viral across social media and Charlotte residents on Sunday. The billboard, attached on the side of a truck, roamed around uptown Charlotte during Carolina Panthers’ game against New Orleans Saints.
The message was simply written as “Don’t get vaccinated” with a banner of ‘Wilmore Funeral Home.’
The billboard also included a web address ‘WilmoreFuneralHome.com,’ a legitimate website that is linked to StarMED Healthcare, a company that’s helping Charlotte residents to get vaccinated.
The ‘funeral home’s’ website listed on the truck has one message: “Get vaccinated now. If not, see you soon.”
Speaking with CBS Charlotte affiliate WBTV, BooneOakley advertising agency owner David Oakley, who spearheaded the ad, said that he intentionally wanted to leave a different and strong message about getting vaccinated.
“A lot of the advertisements that you see right now for pro-vaccine are very simple like, ‘get the shot’, ‘get vaccinated’. It’s very simple. We wanted to do something that saw things from a different perspective,” he explained.
“The idea came about when we thought about who would really benefit from people not getting the shot and you kind of go back to the simple fact that people are dying that aren’t vaccinated, so who benefits from people dying? A funeral home!” Oakley added.
The outlet asked Oakley if he got anxious on the thought that some people could have interpreted the message in a harmful manner.
“I was a little bit worried before we started, but when I really think about it, if this advertisement gets one person vaccinated, it was worth it,” he said.
Ultimately, Oakley and his team were happy with the outcome, hoping that the ad would really encourage more people to get inoculated.
“I think any advertisement that is provocative is going to create a dialogue and when you get people talking, people have action and I’m hoping that people will get the shot because of this,” he told WBTV.
In a statement to WBTV, StarMED Chief Relations and Response Officer Chris Dobbins said that the company “has and will continue to administer and support COVID Testing, Vaccinations, and Antibody Therapy in response to this ongoing Pandemic,” adding that while there are varying messages against COVID-19 vaccination, they “support all efforts to educate and motivate our community to prevent and stop the spread of this virus.”
Meanwhile, Crenshaw Visions owner Garrett Crenshaw, who owns the digital billboard truck, said that he got almost 200 phone calls because of the ad.
A picture of the billboard truck went viral on Twitter Sunday as thousands of people retweeted it.
Source: CBS News