NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--BIN: Black Information Network, the first and only 24/7 national and local all news audio service dedicated to providing an objective, accurate and trusted source of continual news coverage with a Black voice and perspective, announced today that it has joined with the Ad Council and COVID Collaborative to help kick off their “It’s Up To You” COVID-19 vaccine education initiative.
Despite the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color there are extremely high rates of vaccine hesitancy among these communities, rooted in a deep history of health inequities, mistrust and skepticism. To reach its audiences with messages that will resonate, BIN has adapted the Ad Council’s “It’s Up To You” COVID-19 vaccine education campaign and created a week-long schedule of programming designed to reaffirm the legitimacy of having questions about the vaccines, while at the same time answering questions and addressing concerns their audiences may have.
“Based on research, the Black community is the least likely group to be receptive to taking a COVID-19 vaccine,” said Tony Coles, President of BIN: Black Information Network. “Our goal is to present the most accurate news and information to help curb the future impact of COVID-19 on the communities we serve, by both answering questions around vaccination and providing resources for the public to get informed.”
BIN was founded on an innovative business model: instead of being supported by traditional advertising, BIN is enabled by a group of well-known brands as Founding Partners who provide long-term support to allow BIN to focus solely on its mission of building an important platform for Black journalism and trusted news. As a result of this innovative and unique advertising model, BIN has been able to bring together some of its Founding Partners including Bank Of America, CVS Health, Lowe’s, McDonald’s USA, Sony, 23andMe and Verizon, to contribute a week of advertising on BIN, using the platform to spark meaningful conversation fueled by trusted news and information. Collectively these leading consumer brands will donate over 1,300 hours of continuous media to spark a deeper conversation around the COVID-19 vaccine and address specific concerns within the Black community.
"Combining the collective power of BIN and the Ad Council will be one of the most effective partnerships to get the right information about the COVID-19 vaccine to the Black community," said Diego Scotti, CMO, Verizon. "With Verizon being a partner of both organizations, it is a proud moment to see the impact that can be made when the industry takes action together."
“As a Founding Partner of the Black Information Network and a member of the Ad Council Coalition, we recognize the opportunity to help address critical communication efforts around the importance of this vaccine,” said Meredith Verdone, Chief Marketing Officer of Bank of America. “This initiative will accelerate the impact of the Ad Council’s campaign within communities that continue to be disproportionally impacted by the coronavirus.”
“CVS’ partnership with BIN allows us to have an ongoing channel to reach Black consumers every day with important and timely COVID-19 and vaccine information,” said Norm de Greve, Chief Marketing Officer of CVS. “We were thrilled to see so many of the BIN partner brands band together with the network and the Ad Council to donate their airtime to help ensure these critical messages get heard in the local communities where they are most needed.”
“We are proud to partner with our franchisees to turn over our advertising time to BIN and the Ad Council to educate the community about COVID-19 vaccinations,” said Morgan Flatley, Chief Marketing Officer, McDonald’s USA. “At McDonald’s, being a good neighbor is one of our core values, and we hope by using our resources as a BIN founding partner, we can help bring the Black community one step closer to overcoming this pandemic.”
“As a brand grounded in science and research, we are proud to support the Black Information Network and The Ad Council’s campaign to deliver trusted, balanced information around the data behind the COVID-19 vaccine,” said Tracy Keim, Vice President, Consumer Marketing and Brand, 23andMe. “Knowledge is power, and the campaign message “It’s Up To You” highlights the importance of being armed with the critical information necessary to make an informed health decision today and in the future.”
Beginning today through next week, BIN’s “It’s Up To You” Vaccine Education Week will feature hundreds of custom audio PSAs that bring to life the moments that we have all been missing and encourage listeners to get the facts so that they can make an informed decision about the COVID-19 vaccines; local news updates that provide specific details around local vaccination requirements and availability; interviews with medical experts around the safety and science behind the vaccines; hourly news coverage providing the most up-to-date information around the vaccine rollout; and a Sunday morning public affairs show dedicated to an open discussion about the vaccines and mistrust within the Black community.
Additionally, iHeartMedia today released a series of over 20 English and Spanish custom audio spots across its more than 860 broadcast radio stations nationwide as an extension of the Ad Council and COVID Collaborative “It’s Up To You” campaign that will be made available for other audio companies to use across their platforms. Through the power of audio, the all-new PSAs vividly bring to life the everyday moments we hope to get back to and encourage the public to get the facts to make an informed decision about the COVID-19 vaccines. From family gatherings to church worship, dinner with friends, baseball games and celebrations, the PSAs remind listeners of their own personal stakes in the fight against COVID-19 and the importance of making an informed decision about getting vaccinated.
The spots will run across all iHeartMedia radio stations beginning today and drive listeners to GetVaccineAnswers.org (DeTiDepende.org in Spanish), a website developed by the Ad Council in partnership with COVID Collaborative, which provides the latest information about COVID-19 vaccines, with the ultimate goal of helping the public feel confident and prepared to get vaccinated once they are able to.
“The work that BIN is doing is critical to ensuring millions of people are getting the information they need to make informed decisions about the COVID-19 vaccines – especially those hit hardest by the pandemic where we are seeing the highest rates of hesitancy,” said Lisa Sherman, President and CEO of the Ad Council. “We are honored to partner with iHeartMedia, BIN and their incredible collaborators on this crucial week of action that will help educate audiences, inspire confidence in the vaccines and turn the tide of the pandemic.”
iHeartMedia (NASDAQ: IHRT) is the number one audio company in the United States, reaching nine out of 10 Americans every month – and with its quarter of a billion monthly listeners, has a greater reach than any other media company in the U.S. The company’s leadership position in audio extends across multiple platforms, including more than 850 live broadcast stations in over 160 markets nationwide; through its iHeartRadio digital service available across more than 250 platforms and 2,000 devices; through its influencers; social; branded iconic live music events; other digital products and newsletters; and podcasts as the #1 podcast publisher. iHeartMedia also leads the audio industry in analytics, targeting and attribution for its marketing partners with its SmartAudio product, using data from its massive consumer base. Visit iHeartMedia.com for more company information.
About The Ad Council
The Ad Council has a long history of creating life-saving public service communications in times of national crisis, starting in the organization's earliest days during World War II to September 11th and natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy. Its deep relationships with media outlets, the creative community, issue experts and government leaders make the organization uniquely poised to quickly distribute life-saving information to millions of Americans.
The Ad Council is where creativity and causes converge. The non-profit organization brings together the most creative minds in advertising, media, technology and marketing to address many of the nation's most important causes. The Ad Council has created many of the most iconic campaigns in advertising history. Friends Don't Let Friends Drive Drunk. Smokey Bear. Love Has No Labels.
The Ad Council's innovative social good campaigns raise awareness, inspire action and save lives. To learn more, visit AdCouncil.org, follow the Ad Council's communities on Facebook and Twitter, and view the creative on YouTube.