Put up a billboard for Lyme Disease Awareness Month
by Phyllis Mervine, Founder and President of LymeDisease.org
The nymphal tick season is already underway in some parts of the United States and now’s the time to double down on alerts and information about tick-borne diseases.
Do you have anything special planned to raise awareness and educate your community for Lyme Disease Awareness Month? How about a billboard? Get started now!
Last year LymeDisease.org worked with several state patient advocacy groups to put up billboards along public highways in Arizona, Utah, and Wisconsin. This year we want to build on success and see how many new states we can add to the list. What about yours?
The number one problem that Lyme disease patients report is that it takes so long for them to be diagnosed—for most patients it is two or more years. We all know that early diagnosis is key to successful treatment.
Our interactive Lyme disease symptom checker gives patients the tools they need to see if Lyme disease is likely and the information that they need to educate their physicians about the disease. After answering a series of diagnostic questions, patient can print out a checklist of symptoms for their physicians. Many people have told us that this type of tool would have prevented major delays in diagnosis. Over 100,000 people have completed it so far.
Our billboard design promotes our symptom checker tool. With a billboard you can reach out to people who don’t yet know that they have Lyme disease. The symptom checker on the LymeDisease.org website is perfect for that.
- It’s short. People can fill it in quickly and print out to share with their doctor.
- It’s educational. When you answer a question, a box detailed information pops up. For instance, the box that pops up when you are answering, “Have you been bitten by a tick?” tells you that most people with Lyme don’t recall being bitten by a tick.
- It empowers patients to teach their physicians.
- It’s compatible with mobile devices, too.
The visual message on the billboard is very short, so it’s ideal for a site where people have just a brief time to register what’s on it, like driving by or at a stoplight.
You can find a list of billboards available in your area by going to this website. You might see a billboard while you’re driving. Make a note of the name on the billboard and look it up online when you get home.
Or you can try googling the name of your town plus the word “billboard.”
Clear Channel is one national billboard company. The contact information for each market can be found at Clearchanneloutdoor.com. Once there, click on “Where We Are” in tiny print at the top. This will bring up a list. Click on the city/state needed and you should find a phone number. Ask for the sales department.
Prices are based on estimates of how many people will see the billboard. Many eyes = many dollars. Let them know that you are a non-profit because they have special rates. You may even be able to get space for free. Be sure to ask.
The process takes about two weeks to get the vinyls produced and shipped. You’ll have to decide when you want to target your audience. We have Symptom Checker artwork that can be dropped right into the project and save money on design work.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to talk about doing this. If your group can’t come up with enough money for a billboard, ask us. LymeDisease.org may be able to help you out.
You can also have posters printed and post them around town, in stores, laundromats, clinics, schools and libraries.