Let’s talk about sex, ba-by.
For the past 20 months, Brand-Aid Creative has had sex on the brain.
In October of 2012, the CDC (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) tasked us with one of our most challenging assignments ever: How do you get sexually active gay and bisexual men to talk openly about HIV treatment and prevention – before anything sexual even happens between them?
Well, we came up with over a 100 ways: In the form of five TV spots. Videos. Nine print ads, posters and digital ads. Brochures, handouts, conversation-starter cards and even a safer-sex cheat-sheet. The tactics make up a national, mass- and social-media campaign called Start Talking. Stop HIV., proudly created and produced by Brand-Aid in partnership with the American Institutes for Research (AIR).
Hey, listen, we gotta talk.
Gay and bi men continue to be the most severely affected group by HIV nationwide. Sadly, by far: While making up an estimated 2% of the overall American population, they represent more than half (57%) of the 1.1 million people living with HIV today. They account for two-thirds (66%) of new HIV infections each year. And the CDC’s most recent data shows a 12% increase in new infections among gay and bi men, with a shocking 22% jump among the youngest, ages 13-24. This is unacceptable. And more to the vital goal of the Start Talking. Stop HIV. campaign, it’s entirely preventable. In fact, most other demographics show a marked improvement in HIV/AIDS statistics.
So what’s up with gay and bi men?
In short, and like a lot of relationships both gay and straight, it’s complicated. But research proves that when men talk about things like condom use, HIV status, getting HIV tests, and new meds that not only treat – but prevent – HIV, safer sex happens. And best of all, when there’s more verbal communication between partners, there’s less exchange of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.
Talk. The first 4-letter word that
ought to be on your mind.
These are some of the Start Talking. Stop HIV. print ads and posters. For the rest of the comprehensive materials in the campaign, go to cdc.gov/ActAgainstAIDS/StartTalking.
1 of 92 of 9
3 of 94 of 9
5 of 96 of 9
7 of 98 of 9
9 of 9
“Keep It Hot.”
David T. – El Paso, TX
Start Talking. Stop HIV. was created for – and by – mostly gay men. Indeed, we recruited about 40 non-actor participants from all over the country. These guys aren’t just the stars of this campaign; they’re its heroes. Here’s a short behind-the-scenes / making-of video that introduces you to them and what went on behind the camera, during the shoot and, yes, between the sheets. They also share some really nifty insights, smart tips and sexy strategies to get everybody talking about, and preventing, HIV. So be safe out there. Have fun. But keep the conversation going.
Brand-Aid would like to thank our amazing partners who helped bring this important campaign to life:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) – cdc.gov/ActAgainstAIDS/starttalking
American Institutes for Research (AIR) – air.org
Dean Alexander Productions – deanalexander.com
Steven Biver Stills & Motion – biverstudio.com
Timmi Wolff & Co. – wolffandcompany.com
Cerebral Lounge Post Production – cerebral.tv
Clean Cuts Music & Sound Design – cleancuts.com
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