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Creating the CDC’s Most Successful Health Advocacy Campaign

White House Urges Global Use of Our Invigorating Campaign



Pharmaceutical breakthroughs combined with greater social tolerance had lessened Americans’ urgency around HIV/AIDS. Impressed by Clarity’s chutzpah in stating the problems with the long held approach to advocacy outreach – summer vacation timing, absence of compelling spokespeople and an ineffective website that was impossible to find, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevent chose WBE-certified firm Clarity to turnaround its lagging annual national salvo to get people to clinics on June 27th, National HIV Testing Day.


Relying on bi-lingual radio and TV PSAs and publicity, Clarity secured the Dept. of HHS’s first celebrity cause spokespeople, chosen or their potency and credibility with highly affected demographics as well as the star power to compel public service directors to air our spots over others. The PSA call to action would direct people to a website that was intuitively memorable and easily spoken in an interview – – and once there, replete with a geo-locating testing clinic search engine. We recruited popular musicians Wyclef Jean and Macy Gray and the Latina “Oprah” Cristina Saralegui.


Clarity’s reached 285 million people across all Top 50 US media markets and Puerto Rico. HIV testing clinics set traffic records on June 27th and web traffic spiked by 1001% over the previous year. Three years later, the CDC hired Clarity to reprise its most successful health advocacy campaign for the 25th anniversary of HIV/AIDS discovery, citing unmatched results. We added a podcast and refreshed the spokespeople with Dennis Haysbert, Selma Hayek, Judy Tenuta, ER’s Laura Ceron and Nick Cannon. US News & World Report’s reported First Lady Laura Bush’s urging of a global expansion of this CDC domestic campaign ­– Clarity’s work – at a United Nations Special Assembly on HIV/AIDS, and this praise was documented in White House transcripts.