By Kelly Callahan-Poe, President of Williams Whittle
Tens of millions of Americans suffer from a communication disorder. In fact, 65% of Americans are concerned for themselves or a loved one with balance, risk of falls, hearing, ringing in the ears, cognition, swallowing, speech and/or language difficulties. Unfortunately, many adults are not even aware these conditions are treatable by certified audiologists and speech-language pathologists and continue living with conditions that can be vastly improved.
The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) is the national professional, scientific, and credentialing association for 223,000 members and affiliates who are audiologists; speech-language pathologists; speech, language, and hearing scientists; audiology and speech-language pathology support personnel; and students.
ASHA’s vision is making effective communication, a human right, accessible and achievable for all. Effective communication, as well swallowing and eating safely, are closely connected to academic, social, and career success – and of course, overall quality of life.
The “Real Stories” PSA campaign that Williams Whittle created for ASHA was inspired by actual stories of people receiving care from certified audiologists and speech-language pathologists. One spot focuses on audiologists, who specialize in preventing and assessing hearing and balance disorders as well as providing audiologic treatment, including hearing aids.
The other spot features speech-language pathologists (SLPs) that identify, assess, and treat speech, language, and swallowing disorders.
“We’re very excited to have launched our new ‘Real Stories’ PSA campaign. It focuses on the great work ASHA members do to help people with communication disorders, so we had to be sure we got it right. And we did with a lot of help from Williams Whittle.”
According to Joseph Cerquone, Senior Director of Public Relations at AHSA, a significant number of people have postponed treatment due to the pandemic, and the PSAs are meant to prompt them to get help. “We are confident that message will be delivered, given the airing pitch, dissemination strategy, and approach to television and radio stations that Williams Whittle has developed and implemented.”
The campaign was produced by Sprocket Media Works and drives traffic to ASHA’s website to learn more about communication disorders, and to find a national database of audiologists and speech-language pathologists.