Ohio ads use humor to address problem gambling

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Ohio Lottery Commission is trying
to draw attention to serious messages about problem gambling by
depicting the outcomes of some humorous bets.
A bearded man
dancing atop a table with rhythmic gymnastics ribbons and another guy
wearing a dog costume as he crouches in a crowded elevator are among the
characters in the "I Lost a Bet" media campaign, which includes short
television ads and billboards.
The ads refer to the campaign
website, where the funny scenes precede serious messages about the
damaging effects that problem gambling can have on people’s lives.
the applesauce with the medicine," the lottery’s marketing director,
Sandi Lesko Mounts, told The Columbus Dispatch (http://bit.ly/1c0IOgk).
ads target the population segment statistically shown to be most at
risk of being hooked on gambling: young adults in the 18-to-34 age
range, especially men.
"This is to draw in that demographic that
doesn’t really like being told what to do," Lesko Mounts said. "They
love mobile, they live online, they won’t call an 800 number. We’re a
thread being woven into the fabric of that conversation."
campaign has a $2 million budget, funded by part of the taxes paid by
the Ohio horse-racing tracks that have added slots-like video machines.
About $1.5 million was spent on the TV time and on having a Cincinnati
advertising firm create the ads. They’re part of the Ohio for
Responsible Gambling collaboration between the lottery, casino and
racing commissions and the state Department of Mental Health and
Addiction Services.
Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com
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