The Brief

Your Mission: Create a video ad, a radio spot, or a design for a billboard ad to encourage safe driving.

Your Audience: Young drivers who are new to the road.

Your Topic/Brief: Stop distracted driving, specifically texting while driving. Young drivers are often overly confident in their own abilities to text and drive, but think it's dangerous when others engage in this behavior. People think they are the exception, but no one is special enough to text and drive.

A lot of texting and driving prevention creative uses scare tactics or preachy messaging that addresses the consequences of texting and driving (crashes or death), but we want you to address what motivates people to think they can safely text and drive.

Please note that you should not include logos or branding – or mention of logos or branding – in your video, design, or radio spot.

Why: Prevent serious car crashes and deaths.

Contest Guidelines & Info

Select a contest below to view specific details on entry guidelines, judging criteria, and best practices. Before applying, be sure to review the FAQ and Official Rules. You may apply to multiple or all contests as long as the entry follows all guidelines and requirements.

To enter any contest, you must be a high school junior or senior between the ages of 14 and 20; or a full-time undergraduate college student between the ages of 15 and 25, to participate. If you are under 18, your parent or legal guardian must sign an eligibility for (we will contact you).

Guidelines

  • No entry will be accepted with footage of a person ACTUALLY texting while driving (see FAQ for more info)
  • Videos are limited to EITHER exactly 25 seconds or exactly 55 seconds
  • All persons (even animated characters or objects) must wear seat belts.
  • Avoid all branding in submissions, even in the background of footage (i.e. product logos or store logos, like McDonald's or Starbucks.)
  • Make sure voices can be clearly heard if using dialogue.
  • If filming from a smart phone, shoot footage horizontally.
  • Film should be your personal creation; do not use stock video or photos.
  • To ensure this, please use the following guidelines while filming: The use of a consumer or “prosumer” camera, preferably high-definition (HD) quality; Film resolution for all footage must be at least 720 x 480; If an iPhone or some form of a flip camera is used, shoot footage horizontally, not vertically; Overall, please select the highest resolution possible with any camera
    use.

Note: Please keep all your unused video footage taken during the making of your film. If you are the winning entry, the Ad Council will need the footage in case it turns your
video into a broadcast quality PSA. We will also add on a 5 second end frame to make the full video 30 or 60 seconds.

For a full list of rules, please read the Official Rules.

Judging Criteria

  • Ability to capture the attention of others, specifically, the attention of your peers.
  • Persuade others to alter driving habits. Your film must resonate with teens and young adults and move them to action.
  • Clarity of message - it must be understandable and well-structured.
  • Creative expression - put your personal stamp on it.
  • Video should be of good production quality.

Inspiration & Best Practices

First, check out past winners here.

Make sure your video is:

  • 25 or 55 seconds in length.
  • Shot horizontally (if using a smartphone).
  • Has clear and understandable audio or music, if applicable. You can also preview music available for download (see FAQ).
  • Accurate. If you use any statistics, use those available on StopTextsStopWrecks.org or Distraction.gov (see FAQ). But please note that you don’t have to use statistics to drive your point home!
  • Original. Do not use any design elements that are not of your creation (i.e. stock photos, emojis, Apple or other branding, etc.). Avoid (or blur) all branding in your submission You can use existing design elements that are not of your creation as inspiration, but do not copy or use them directly in your work.

Apply Now

Guidelines

  • Designs must be a horizontal image
  • Designs must be original
  • Designs may not include road signage or any color/font schemes that imitate official road signals or traffic direction or may be confused as such
  • Designs must not use any design elements that are not of your creation (i.e. stock photos, emojis, Apple branding, etc.)
  • All persons depicted in designs (even animated characters or objects) must wear seat belts
  • If you are taking a photo to use as the visual in your design, please be sure that you are using the highest resolution possible on your camera/phone since the final design will be scaled to billboard size.
  • You can create your own message or tagline, but remember to keep overall word count to around 7 words or less.
  • Do not include a logo on your design; if your submission is selected as the winning entry, we will add the appropriate logos.

Please use these design specifications for creating your work:

  • Follow the technical specifications for Clear Channel Outdoor Digital Bulletin Production
  • Art Pixel Dimensions: 400x1400 pixels
  • Color Mode: RGB
  • File Type: Uncompressed JPG
  • Spec artboard layout available for download here
  • Outdoor Design Guildlines

Note: If your entry is selected, your work may be turned into a professional public service billboard by the Ad Council and shown on billboards across the U.S. courtesy of Clear Channel Outdoor. Please keep all your artwork files; if you are the winning entrant, the Ad Council and Clear Channel Outdoor will need your native files to turn your artwork into a professional billboard.

For a full list of rules, please read the Official Rules.

Judging Criteria

  • Ability to capture the attention of others, specifically, the attention of your peers.
  • Persuade others to alter driving habits. Your design must resonate with teens and young adults and move them to action.
  • Clarity of message – it must be understandable and well-structured.
  • Creative expression – put your personal stamp on it and make it unique.
  • Your design should be of good production quality.

Inspiration & Best Practices

First, check out past winners here. You can also find samples of outdoor advertisements for inspiration here. Also, please review the Clear Channel Outdoor best practices guide for tips on making effective outdoor advertising.

Make sure your design is:

  • Limited to 7 words or less.
  • Simple. Don’t include background that is distracting or confusing.
  • Clear and understandable. Viewers only have a few seconds to understand your billboard message, so make it clear and easy-to-read.
  • Not confused with any traffic or road signs. Your design should not include road signage or any font/color schemes that imitate official road signals or traffic directions. This could be confusing to drivers.
  • Original. Do not use any design elements that are not of your creation (i.e. stock photos, emojis, Apple or other branding, etc.). Avoid (or blur) all branding in your submission. You can use existing design elements that are not of your creation as inspiration, but do not copy or use them directly.

Apply Now

Guidelines

  • Submit spots that are exactly 20 seconds long, but please
    extend the stock music, background noise/audio, sound effects,
    etc., for an additional ten seconds. The Ad Council will be adding a
    10 second voiceover endtag to the end of your spot (thus, creating
    an entire 30 second radio PSA)
  • Since the winning work may play as people are driving, please do not include noises or dialogue that could be distracting to drivers. This includes, but is not limited to, loud noises, car crash sound effects, etc.
  • Please use music provided on this site or that you otherwise have the express permission to use.
  • All entries must have a transcript included with the entry.
  • Be original
  • Make an effort to follow radio recording best practices
  • All audio files must be .mp3, .wav or .aiff format, outputted as 2-channel Stereo. Audio in other formats will not be accepted. (Please see accepted audio files on chart below.)
    MP3WAVAIFF
    Bitrate128 to 320 kbps
    UncompressedUncompressed
    Sample Rate44.1 or 48 khz44.1 or 48 khz44.1 or 48 khz
    Bits/SampleN/A
    16 or 24 bitN/A
    Audio Channel2 CH Stereo
    2 CH Stereo2 CH Stereo

Note: If your entry is selected, your work will be turned into a professional
public service radio ad by the Ad Council and aired on radio stations
across the U.S. courtesy of iHeartRadio. Please keep all your unused recording taken during the making of your soundtrack.

For a full list of rules, please read the Official Rules.

Judging Criteria

  • Ability to capture the attention of others, specifically, the attention of your peers.
  • Persuade others to alter driving habits. Your recording must resonate with teens and adults and move them to action.
  • Clarity of message – it must be understandable and well-structured.
  • Creative Expression – put your personal stamp on it.
  • Recording should be of good production quality

Inspiration & Best Practices

First, check out past winners here. You can also look here for more samples of effective radio ads. Also, please review the iHeart best practices guide for tips here. Wordsworth & Booth has also provided tips on making effective radio ads here.

  • Please refrain from using a cell phone (e.g. iPhone) to record your radio ad because the quality will be jeopardized. Professional grade equipment/software is best: Adobe Audition, Audacity, Soundtrack Pro, etc. Please check with your school’s library or local library to see if you can borrow this equipment.
  • If recording in multiple locations/studios, please be mindful of the background noise, since it could be captured in your recording. The clearer the audio, the better. Too many noises and sound effects can distract or confuse the listener.

Other tips found online (may be helpful for those new to recording radio):

https://www.strategicmediainc.com/newsroom/top-ten-keys-creating-great-radio-ads

http://www.wikihow.com/Write-a-Radio-Ad

Make sure your radio spot is

  • 20 seconds in length.
  • Not distracting; do not use any loud or alarming sounds, including – but not limited to – crash sounds or sirens. Keep in mind that folks will likely hear the winning radio spot as they’re driving, so we don’t want any sounds that might distract them.
  • Speak clearly, loudly, and distinctly. We must be able to not only hear what you say but be able to clearly understand it.
  • Accurate. If you use any statistics, use those available on StopTextsStopWrecks.org or Distraction.gov. But please note that you don’t have to use statistics to drive your point home!
  • Original. Do not use any elements that are not of your creation. You can use existing elements that are not of your creation as inspiration, but do not copy or use them directly

Apply Now

Overall Tips

Brainstorm

Start by mapping out an idea on paper. Brainstorm. Write down as many ideas as possible, then go through your list and pick your favorite(s). Take those favorites and expand upon them, but ensure that your ideas are original. You can check that your ideas are original by doing a quick Google or internet search of your concept or keywords.

Tell a story and be creative

Don’t overthink this project. We want you to tell a short story in the form of a video, radio spot or billboard ad. We’re looking for a well-made PSA, but we also want you to talk to your peers. Here are a few questions to ask yourself as you’re crafting that message to share with your peers

We know we’re asking you to deal with a serious topic, but your submission doesn’t have to be overly serious. You have creative license to use humor, popular culture, personal impact, or whatever moves you. Be creative and just make sure that your creative execution is in good taste, is non-partisan and not affiliated with any specific religion, comes from your heart, and adheres to the Official Rules.

Capture attention

They first thing you must do is capture the attention of other teens and young adults. You need to create something they will notice and want to check out. There should be some sort of entertainment value and immediate attraction to your PSA.

Remember that you can make a difference

People wait their entire lives to affect positive change in our society. Through this project, we are offering you that opportunity now. You have a unique, authentic voice and point of view that can reach your peers in ways that adults cannot. Collectively, we can start a movement. YOU can start a movement. It’s not only possible; it’s probable.