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Media embraces Ad Council campaign

'Kids' Healthy Mouths' reaching children nationwide

January 21, 2013

By Kelly Soderlund

The Ad Council campaign designed to teach the importance of children brushing their teeth for two minutes, twice a day has saturated the media market and yielded some encouraging results.

It's been more than five months since a national public service advertising campaign titled “Kids' Healthy Mouths” launched, and residents in some of the country's most populated areas have been exposed to the campaign's message. It was developed by the Ad Council and the Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives, which is made up of 35 organizations, including the ADA.

The partnership joined with the Ad Council to produce the public service campaign, which was told through a series of English and Spanish-language TV, radio, print, outdoor and digital PSAs and designed to teach parents, caregivers and children about the importance of oral health.

In its 70-year history, it's the first campaign on children's oral health produced by the Ad Council, which also created Smokey Bear's “Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires” and McGruff the Crime Dog's “Take A Bite Out of Crime.”

“Brushing for two minutes now can save your child from severe tooth pain later,” the videos say. The videos can be found at, which also includes music, information about children's teeth and other resources.

In the first two months, the English PSAs aired on local broadcast TV stations in seven of the top 10 media markets in the U.S., including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas, San Francisco and Boston.

They also received placements on all of the major networks' local affiliates and have even been seen on The Cartoon Network.

The Spanish PSAs aired in Hispanic markets such as New York; Miami/Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; San Antonio, Texas; and Harlingen/Weslaco/Brownsville/McAllen, Texas.

Between Aug. 14 and Dec. 2, the campaign generated $6.2 million in earned media coverage and $1.6 million in donated TV, radio, print and Web banner placements. The New York Times, which holds a circulation of 1.5 million readers, wrote a story on the campaign, and the multimedia news releases distributed to the press generated more than 221 million views.

Dr. Mario Ramos, a spokesman for the campaign, appeared on “Good Afternoon America”—which has an audience of nearly 1.5 million people—with Grover from “Sesame Street” to discuss the ads.

The Washington Post blog The Checkup included a post on the campaign, sharing information with its nearly 8.9 million unique monthly visitors.

The blog post was shared 2,400 times on Twitter and 6,600 times on Facebook.

“Moving forward, the partnership will continue to monitor how well the PSAs are received and how effective they are,” said Dr. Maria Lopez Howell, an ADA spokeswoman who has given many interviews to the media on the campaign.

“We'll continue the outreach leading up to and surrounding National Children's Dental Health Month in February and to encourage the media and networks to promote the videos. I'm excited to see how the simple measure of brushing teeth for two minutes, twice a day will translate into future oral health for our children.”