Commercials for Compliance: Creative Strategies & Techniques

Mar 25, 2024

In this episode of Creativity & Compliance, Tom & Ronnie discuss the strategy of using commercials to increase visibility, exposure, awareness and engagement of ethics, compliance & speak up culture.


Tom Fox

Ronnie Feldmen


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About This Episode

Commercials for Compliance
Creative Strategies & Techniques

In this episode of Creativity & Compliance, Tom & Ronnie discuss the strategy of using commercials to increase visibility, exposure, awareness and engagement of ethics, compliance & speak up culture.

Compliance training tends to be long, boring and infrequent. This makes it largely ineffective. People aren’t learning and they come away with a feeling of dissatisfaction and sometimes even anger (at the Ethics & Compliance department which isn’t good when you’re trying to build trust). Even if they do happen to pick up some learning, it’s almost certainly forgotten. Scientifically we can discuss things like “the forgetting curve” and short-term memory versus long-term memory, but said more simply, “people forget stuff.” Most learning theory tells us that short, frequent and engaging is more efficient and effective than long, boring and infrequent.


The concept of commercials is an interesting strategy to improve awareness and stay top of mind, to leave an impression about your program and brand to to improve engagement and recall. Commercials…
  • Promote a simple concept
  • They’re short
  • Have some entertainment value
  • They direct you where to go for more information
  • They show up where you already are, in the flow of your regular activities

We don’t want ethics & compliance to be an “other.” We want to integrate within the flow of business. If your EC Commercials are short and have some entertainment value, you can put them in more places and play them in higher rotation.

  • Post & Push & Pull Through – Post the EC Commercial next to the important policy or leaning resource and then drive traffic there.
    • Emails
    • Newsletter banners
    • Slack, Yammer,
    • Teams Chat
  • Pre & Post Training – Circulate EC Commercials in advance of training so they show up with a better attitude or post training as reinforcement.
  • Meetings & Events – Play EC Commercials between speakers at sales meetings, leadership meetings and town halls, even when not on the agenda.
  • Other Newsletters & Trainings – Provide EC Commercials to other departments to integrate within other department newsletters and other department trainings.
  • The Business – Provide EC Commercials to leaders and ethics ambassadors to play over Zoom/Teams periodically within the regular flow of business.
  • Manufacturing/Non-Computer-based Workforce
    • Play EC Commercials as part of safety training huddles
    • Connect EC Commercials to QR codes on posters and business cards
    • Circulate Commercials on Apps


We all have commercials imprinted in our memories. Whether it’s Wendy’s “Where’s the Beef” or Nikes’ “Just Do It” or Dos Equis Most Interesting Man in the World or the latest Gieco, Allstate or State Farm commercial. There are a variety of interesting formats and styles.
  • Product Parodies
  • Songs & Jingles
  • Movie Trailers
  • Anything that is simple, short, has a call-to-action and has some entertainment value.
Ethics & Compliance’s main focus should be influence. If we want to promote EC as the helpful advisors and coaches that we are, we need to say that more frequently. If we want to promote the importance of speaking up and to promote psychological safety, we need to communicate more frequently. If we want to increase our exposure without message fatigue, we need our training and comms to be simple, short and to have some entertainment value. This will allow us to increase our exposure, integrate within the flow of business and keep ethics and compliance top-of-mind throughout the year.

Ronnie Feldman is the President & Creative Director at Learnings & Entertainments, a learning content provider made up of comedians and entertainers with a focus on corporate risk.

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