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Wondros, Los Angeles, director Jesse Dylan helms another philanthropic campaign and taps persuasive celebrities to motivate prospective GED recipients in the comical new :60 PSA “GED Pep Talk Center” for Dollar General and YourGED.org out of DDB Chicago.  The PSA, for broadcast and in-cinema release, features celebs such as Jerry Stiller, The Miz (WWE, The Real World), Christopher Lloyd, Ron Perlman, Danny Trejo, Jamie Lynn Sigler (The Sopranos) and Darryl McDaniels (D.M.C. of Run-D.M.C.)  working at a fictitious GED Pep Talk Call Center, where they each give test takers their own brand of pep talk.

Dollar General came on board for this campaign with a passionate and personal drive for the cause at hand.  DG co-founder J.L. Turner, who was functionally illiterate when he founded the company, started the Dollar General Literacy Foundation in 1993 in order to provide tools and resources to afford individuals opportunities that he did not have beginning his career.  YourGED.org was created to strengthen the reach of Dollar General Literacy Foundation’s message and to create a free resource for people who need help earning their GED.

Following the success of their 2011 campaign, DDB Chicago this time enlisted and partnered with Wondros to bring awareness to this rising national epidemic.  89% of American businesses require applicants to have at least a high school level of education; yet more than 35 million adults do not have their high school diploma.  This campaign provides the “push” needed for these people to get their GEDs.

The Wondros team scoured the celebrity world to find perfect range of personalities for the :60 as well as the thirteen individual pep talks.  Being an industry renowned photographer, Dylan was also responsible for the print portion of the campaign, which will be featured on outdoor billboards, online banners and print advertising nationwide.

‘GED Pep Talks’ focuses on motivating people to take the necessary steps to get their GED.  The campaign has tailored ‘pep talks’ appropriate for the different level of motivation needed.

The ‘GED Pep Talk Center’ has 13 celebrity pep talkers, chosen for their unique communication styles to provide varying levels of encouragement to those in need of a little motivation.  The website allows visitors to adjust a slider to control the strength of their pep talk, varying from the ‘Gentle’ approach from sweet TV mom Debra Jo Rupp (“That 70s Show”) to the ‘Extreme’ technique by tough guy Danny Trejo.

The multi-media campaign provides resources for people find and sign up for free GED classes.  In addition to the :60 spot and 13 online pep talks, there is also a hot-line with the option to choose the appropriate level; a special text service to get a celebrity call back and even an option for the most well-meaning family and friends to send a pep talk via Facebook to their loved ones.

About Wondros

Wondros is a strategic consultancy and media production company. By channeling the skill sets of a coalition of filmmakers, producers and talent, Wondros creates content in the service of ideas that change culture.
About DDB

DDB Worldwide Communications Group Inc (www.ddb.com) ranks among the top five consolidated advertising and marketing services global networks, according to Advertising Age. Consistently one of the world’s most awarded networks for creative excellence, DDB was Campaign’s 2009 Global Network of the Year, the 2010 Spikes Asia Network of the Year, Eurobest Network of the Year, Campaign Asia-Pacific Creative Network of the Year and captured both the Cyber Grand Prix and Film Craft Grand Prix at the 2010 International Advertising Festival in Cannes. With more than 200 offices in over 90 countries, the DDB Group helps grow the value and influence of leading brands around the world. We believe that creativity is the most powerful force in business, allowing us to develop ideas that people want to play with, participate in and pass along. We call this Social Creativity. DDB Worldwide is part of Omnicom Group Inc. (OMC).


Client: Dollar General Literacy Foundation
Title: “GED Pep Talk Center” :60

Agency: DDB Chicago
ECD: Ewan Peterson
Executive Producer: Scott Kemper
Creative Directors: Alex Zamiar, Jonathan Richman
Creatives/ CD: Matt Collier, Wayne Robinson

Executive Producer, Digital: Jon Ellis

Senior Graphic Designer: Lindsey Stuart
Production: Wondros, L.A.
Director: Jesse Dylan
Executive Producer: Gina Zapata
Line Producer: Greg Schultz
DP: Christophe Lanzenberg
Production Designer: Emma Fairley

Editorial: Cutters
Editor: Grant Gustafson
Assistant Editor: Aaron Kiser
Producer: Patrick Casey

Post: Filmworkers
Executive Producer: Lisa Long
Producer: Derek DeBoard
Flame Artist: Justin Winkler

Music: Hum
Producer: Scott Glenn

Mixer: Nick Papaleo