You think reading and being intelligent are traits belonging to the ranks of the dweebs and single, homely folks? Think again, says the Newspaper Association of America. In a new campaign, the NAA is saying that not only is reading print and online the right and popular thing to do, it is sexy too. "Smart is the New Sexy" is the campaign tagline for the NAA.
You can find readership statistics on the website, and if you want, you can tweet #smartsexy and share with the Twitterverse your thoughts about the matter. On Facebook you can visit the NAA's page and write a comment or upload your own video about why newspapers are important in your life.
The copy for the campaign is tightly knit and inviting. I appreciate how it starts out. The copy you see before you click through to the rest of the material is this:
Be able to find Iran on a map. Know what the city council is up to behind closed doors. Find out how to make an icebox peanut butter pie from scratch. Get it all in the newspaper, print or digital, because a little depth looks great on you.
Boom. I also love the title, "The Newspaper. Get It." because it has that youthful edge that the younger generation tends to enjoy. Plus, "get it" is one of those phrases that you whisper to your friend (or, yell across the bar/night scene) when they are in the zone, or sees something/someone they would like to know. The opening copy is attacking with a lot of substance. The first line is saying that those who read the newspaper are good at geography, and those do not need some knowledge. Then it goes into that those who read are involved citizens and are likely to pick up unique recipes. Finally, it ends by saying that people who spend time reading have character and stuff to talk about, not like the shallow people who don't. It said it, without being jerks about it.
Then once you enter the site, the copy goes after the "talking heads" and "opinions that pass as news". Bravo, it is fun to see a media group that is actually going against what the rest of the media seems to be doing, and turning news in to "infotainment."
Below is one of the videos the NAA has on its site, and with this kind of campaign going on in this whacky economic and entertainment society, one would hope more videos are on the way.
Obviously these are not going to be your typical newspaper readers, for we all know those readers who pick up a single section and leave the rest unruffled. But it is good to see the NAA trying to shift the trend by promoting literacy and intelligence and re-branding the newspaper as sexy. If they start getting women to read newspapers in their bikinis, then would the campaign be totally unrealistic?
What are your thoughts? Do you think this campaign will work, or at least make a splash? This campaign was covered by NPR, but let's face it — if you're listening to NPR, chances are you're reading the newspaper. And according to NAA, that's pretty sexy.