Despite the prevalence of HIV/AIDS around the globe, HIV testing remains a somewhat taboo topic, even if many people may be anxious to know their status. On World AIDS Day last December, Israeli radio stations addressed this issue head on by turning what’s generally a very private concern into a public one. As part of the “Everyone is being checked” project, commissioned by the anti-AIDS committee, leading radio broadcasters on all stations committed to getting HIV tests live on-air at their stations. Then, for an anxiety-ridden 30 minutes, they waited for the results, which were announced on air (all were negative).
The campaign succeeded in sparking conversations about the importance of getting tested. It received a lot of coverage, appearing on the evening news, and turned out to be the day’s talk on Twitter and Facebook. The live radio broadcasts gave people permission to begin talking about the need to get tested and to confront their anxiety around the test. Brands that want to jump-start conversations around a difficult or taboo issue can learn from this example of a real-time, “reality” initiative that put the topic on the day’s agenda nationwide.
Photo Credit: Jayel Aheram