By Stephanie Ciccarelli
August 6, 2007
Simon Cowell is best known as the hard hitting, merciless member of the triumvirate on American Idol, but as we've heard and seen in recent days, he's quite the opposite when taken out of the camera's glare.
Politics.co.uk has shone the limelight on a different Simon Cowell along with TV presenter, DJ and model Fearne Cotton, promoting the warm and fuzzy side of Cowell in particular.
Discuss the UK advertisement "I'm An Animal Help Me Out"!
During July of this year, the RSPCA teamed up with famous broadcast personalities Simon Cowell and Fearne Cotton to produce 90 second advertisements raising awareness for the RSPCA's efforts to rescue and "re-home" needy animals.
RSPCA stands for The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and their vision is "to work for a world in which all humans respect and live in harmony with all other members of the animal kingdom". The organization has enjoyed royal patronage since 1840 with the present Queen Elizabeth II as its Patron.
The 90 second TV ad called "I'm An Animal Help Me Out" first hit television sets on Monday 16 July. It has been created using inspiration from reality TV shows as a new way to grab viewers' attention on a serious subject.
The ad plays on the popular voting feature of reality TV programs where viewers are moved to text or phone vote for their favorite person or act. The first campaign featured three stories of animals who need saving.
1. Poppy the kitten who has been dumped in an alleyway and left to starve.
2. Honey the dog who has been beaten by his owner.
3. Tilly the puppy who has been used by her owner as an ashtray to stub cigarettes out.
An interesting and fitting spin is that through voting for any one of the three animals to be rescued, all animals win because all the proceeds go to support the RSPCA. The phone numbers are identical to show that each animal is equal and deserves the same amount of love and rescuing.
None of the stories used are real cases but are based on the typical sorts of situations the RSPCA faces day in day out.
â€¢ Simon Cowell and Fearne Cotton gave their time for free to do the voiceover and received no payment from the RSPCA
â€¢ The TV ad is supported by online marketing activity including banners, as well as a door drop to households in key viewing areas
â€¢ There are two versions of the ad - one which asks viewers to text to make a donation and one which asks viewers to call
â€¢ The ad was created by London-based marketing agency bright
Simon Cowell said: "When I was asked to get involved with this project for the RSPCA, I didn't hesitate. I think the work they do is vitally important in protecting many thousands of animals from harm and neglect every single year.
"Inflicting any kind of suffering on a defenseless animal is one of the most deplorable acts a human being can do and we all have a responsibility to stop this from happening. The RSPCA doesn't receive any Government funding whatsoever, so they are totally reliant on the generosity of the public.
"Put simply, the RSPCA cannot continue to rescue, treat and re-home over a thousand neglected, injured and sick animals every month without your help. So please show your support in any way you can."
The advertisement has been shown on national and regional TV channels including Living, UKTV, E4, Granada, and HTV Wales and West since Monday 16 July.
At present, the three animals you can vote to save are Banjo, Heidi and Ralph with a link to look at "previous lucky winners".
Download and watch the advert at a supporting microsite for the RSPCA.
What do you think of this concept? Have you watched the advertisements or voted?
Image Â© RSPCA.org.uk
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