Times Square 'Jumbotron' Spreads Word About Family Medicine

February 12, 2013 02:50 pm "Voices" Staff

The CBS "Jumbotron" flashes the AAFP's family medicine message every hour, 18 hours a day. The display will continue through March 31.

Times Square: It's the epitome of "bright lights, big city," with more than 450 million people passing through it every year. The AAFP recently jumped at an unexpected opportunity to reach more than 1.5 million of those people with a message about family medicine -- a colorful, animated message that flashes on the CBS Spectacular "Jumbotron" in Times Square, one of New York City's most popular destinations.

The AAFP always looks for novel and effective ways to spread the word about family medicine, but this opportunity was unique. Another Jumbotron advertiser had pulled out at the last minute, leaving a vacancy that the AAFP could fill at a substantially discounted price -- if it could submit an ad message right away.

The AAFP could, and it did. The Academy's creative team quickly designed an attractive, easy-to-understand ad message that was approved and submitted in time.

The theme of the message is that every person deserves a family physician. The message ends with the URL for the AAFP's consumer health website, FamilyDoctor.org, which includes information on what to look for in a family doctor.

The CBS Jumbotron screen is 26 feet wide by 20 feet high (520 square feet). The AAFP's 15-second spot is scheduled to run on the screen once an hour for 18 hours each day from Feb. 7 through March 31.

That time period is full of events that bring people into New York City, including New York Fashion Week, the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, the St. Patrick's Day Parade, the New York Wine Expo and NBA basketball.

The Academy's nimble response to the Jumbotron opportunity is just the latest chapter in the AAFP's ongoing effort to promote family medicine and the value it brings to the health care system. In this year when so much is at stake for the specialty, the Academy will keep working hard to spread the word about family medicine to the public, government, business and the health care industry.