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Distracted driving is a significant issue. One that the marketing world has been trying to curb in recent years. The problem is that they've been trying to do it with marketing. Awareness films, billboards, etc. But when it comes to distracted driving, it's not a matter of education. Everyone knows it's dangerous. It's a matter of habit. So instead of another marketing effort, I came up with a simple tactic.

Inspired by my daughter's technique of tying a piece of yarn around her finger to remember something for school, I decided to paint my thumbnail red so every time I picked up my phone from behind the wheel, all I would see was a big, red thumb reminding me to put the phone away. As silly as it sounds, it totally worked. And now my hope is that it'll work for everyone else. One red thumbnail at a time.

Since launching the website and sending the video out to a few friends, the response has been incredible. Red Thumb Reminder has gone from a simple idea to a global initiative with groups forming in Mexico, Canada and Europe. State Departments of Transportation, Schools, Cosmetic companies, financial institutions and of course, Nissan and Adam Levine have all adopted the program.

Not long after launching, Nissan (and their ad agency) adopted the program as their official safe driving initiative.


As the campaign continued to pick up steam, I reached out to a nail polish company to see if they wanted to get involved. They politely declined. But then they launched this. Maybe they just didn't like me.

And finally, as the crowning moment, I ended up on the Today Show talking to Al Roker. Of course, they went way overboard on the swag. What started with simple nail polish quickly turned into branded hats, scarfs, and yes, even foam fingers. 

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