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Army Targets Gen Z With Billboard Campaign

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The U.S. Army launched a new marketing campaign calling on high-performing, goal-oriented youth from all backgrounds to consider Army Officership, a specialized path of service for aspiring leaders. “Decide to Lead” is based on the central message that leadership is a choice and that beginning that transformation starts with the decision to lead.

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Profile photo of Alex Fink
Alex Fink

“Research tells us that very few young people today consider Army service and even fewer believe that the Army is a viable path for college-bound youth,” said Maj. Gen. Alex Fink, Chief of Army Enterprise Marketing. “‘Decide to Lead’ helps address some common misperceptions about Army service by showing youth how Officership can be the ultimate launch pad for the career and lifestyle they want. We have the training, benefits, and community to prepare motivated youth to succeed and lead in any environment, they just need to make the choice.”

The campaign makes a concerted effort to increase awareness of this unique path of service while highlighting its competitive advantages. Unlike most professionals, Army Officers start their careers in leadership roles, planning and guiding missions and leading teams that make a difference in communities around the world. To support them on their journeys, Officers receive a caliber of iterative leadership training and mentorship from the Army that, in other industries, is traditionally reserved for more seasoned professionals.

A mix of Army Officers and Cadets appear in the campaign to highlight the opportunities and trajectories one can experience throughout an Army career. “Decide to Lead” also plays an important role in the Army’s efforts to increase diversity by recruiting Officers who represent projected demographics of the U.S. population in 2050.

“The Soldiers featured in this campaign are a mirror of who we are and what we aspire to be – leaders of character and servants of our great American public,” said Maj. Gen. Johnny Davis, Commanding General of United States Army Cadet Command and Fort Knox. “It is critical that we build the force that reflects the population it serves. The Army Officers we recruit today are our rising leaders of tomorrow.”

The campaign’s creative approach is based in a simple human truth: leadership is not innate. The six headlining videos aim to excite and inspire consideration of each viewer’s leadership potential and desire for new avenues of opportunity and advancement, while conveying the Army’s value proposition to youth.

“Decide to Lead” will reach nationwide audiences online across social, community, and entertainment platforms, including Reddit, YouTube, Spotify, Pandora, and Google, as well as through GoArmy social media channels and GoArmy.com. A range of other promotional assets – print advertisements, posters, and billboards displayed in high-traffic, primary audience locations like college campuses – extend the Army’s efforts to meet Gen Z where they are.

For more information on “Decide to Lead” and opportunities to serve as an Officer in the U.S. Army, visit GoArmy.com/Officer.

About the Army Enterprise Marketing Office (AEMO)
AEMO is the U.S. Army’s national marketing, marketing research and analysis and accessions analysis organization. AEMO develops innovative and effective ways to: connect with the American public to make the Army more accessible and understood; increase awareness of both the benefits and value of Army service; and motivate the most qualified candidates to choose the Army as their service of first choice.

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