A new campaign by UK charity GambleAware uses gentle humor, rather than outright scare tactics, to persuade young men that they might live to regret the bets they made when they were drunk or bored.
The ads, by M&C Saatchi, includes a new spot seen here, which features an inebriated man in a kebab shop toying with the idea of betting on a central American Cup fixture. He is instantly transported to a TV studio in Panama where he is mocked, in Spanish, by the local pundits for his lack of knowledge of the teams involved.
In another ad, which broke last week, a man slips into the kitchen to make a sneaky bet while watching TV with his girlfriend. Suddenly he finds himself immersed in another world, pitch-side at soccer club Queens Park Rangers' stadium, being interrogated by BT Sport’s Matt Smith and former Welsh internationals Dean Saunders and Danny Gabbidon about why he's being so foolish and chasing up his losses with another bet.
A final spot, yet to air, will see a bored office worker placing a bet while at work. Chris Palmer of Gorgeous directed all three ads.
The campaign aims to encourage self-reflection among the estimated at 2.4 million British men aged 16-34 who gamble regularly on sport, mainly online. It's also designed to help their friends and partners recognize the signs. It focuses on stopping people from being drawn into more problematic gambling behavior.
Professor Sian Griffiths, GambleAware Trustee and deputy chair, Public Health England (interim) said: “The Bet Regret campaign is about raising awareness of behaviors that people might not always recognize as impulsive or risky, such as sports betting when drunk, bored or chasing losses. We want people to identify with the campaign, realize they too have those kick-yourself moments when betting and reflect on their behaviors, thus preventing future ill-considered bets which are so often the pathway towards harm.”