September 25, 2022

Helping PR pros make smarter decisions

CDC’s Zombie Alert

CDC’s Zombie Alert

I’m pretty impressed with the communications team at the CDC. They’ve taken a fairly dry topic–disaster and emergency preparedness–and figured out a way to get people to not only read, but share, the content.

How on earth did they do that? Who wants to share government’s suggestions on what to have on hand in an emergency, and how the CDC responds?

They use humor, and make it interesting and funny–by telling people how to prepare for the Zombie Apocalypse.

According to the Wall Street Journal’s Health Blog, the idea was borne from response to Twitter following the tsunami in Japan:

“Zombie preparedness is the brainchild, so to speak, of communications staff who noticed that traffic took off when zombies were mentioned during one of its Twitter sessions on Japan and radiation, says Dave Daigle, a CDC spokesperson who led the new campaign.”

Brilliant. There’s also a post on Gawker about the campaign. I have yet to read the actual CDC blog post, because it has proven to be so popular, the site keeps crashing.

I’ll keep trying. Great work, CDC communications team–very effective.

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About The Author

Jennifer Zingsheim Phillips is the Director of Marketing Communications for CARMA. She is also the founder of 4L Strategies, and has worked in communications and public affairs for more than 20 years. Her background includes work in politics, government, lobbying, public affairs PR, content creation, and digital and social communications and media analysis.

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