- The Washington Times - Monday, December 30, 2002

The busy travel season is coming to a close, but the Transportation Security Administration is still taking off with its newest public awareness campaign.
"Prepare for Takeoff," the national education initiative that provides airline passengers with updated security measures and traveling tips, made its debut in November just before the mad rush of holiday travel began.
But that was just the beginning, as TSA continues to run the program and plans to expand it to other modes of transportation.
The campaign was developed to "educate the public to make their journey not only secure but smooth," says TSA spokesman Brian Doyle. "This is an ongoing process."
The program, through its new Web site, www.TSATravelTips.us, provides travelers with information ranging from airport security procedures and baggage checkpoints to packing tips and restricted items on airplanes.
The TSA has relied on marketing partners to get the word out about the site and the overall program. Dozens of associations, many in the travel industry, and their members have signed on to distribute the travel tips and promote the campaign.
Mr. Doyle says it has been fairly easy selling the idea of this program to the partners, who range from the American Society of Travel Agents and the National Business Travel Association to the Air Transport Association and the American Hotel & Lodging Association. These groups have been severely affected by the September 11 terrorist attacks, which resulted in the new aviation security measures.
Airports have linked the Web site to their sites, helping travelers navigate more easily. To get user attention, Albany International Airport (www.albanyairport.com) has the "Prepare for Takeoff" symbol flipping around on its home page, which also links to detailed security guidelines.
Radio public service announcements have been produced and sent to stations across the country. Mr. Doyle says television PSAs eventually will be created.
Right now there has been a heavy emphasis on security aviation, but the TSA eventually will address security on rail, ports and cruise lines, as well.
Mr. Doyle expects rail to be a major focus within the first half of 2003.
Saving energy with humor
The Alliance to Save Energy has released a new public service announcement as part of a humorous advertising approach started two years ago that highlights zany energy-efficient experiments.
The latest spot features a science fair full of off-the-wall energy-saving ideas, such as a hamster-powered radio and a student chasing a pig to obtain methane to power a home.
"The message is that every consumer can play a part in saving energy," says Ronnie Kweller, a spokeswoman for the District-based group.
This spot comes on the heels of the group's last award-winning PSA, which has aired since 2000. That ad featured a family's experiment to deal with high energy prices by powering their home with static electricity. The family rubbed their wool socks on the carpet to keep the power on.
Ms. Kweller says the off-beat approach has helped to get the group's message out.
"Energy efficiency is not intrinsically sexy so we jazzed it up," she says.
Both ads were created by DDB Bass & Howes, which has its headquarters in Seattle.

Got news? Donna De Marco can be reached at 202/636-4884. Advertising & Marketing runs every other Monday.

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