If you have ever stopped in your tracks when you heard a child crying, you're not alone. Of course, it's human nature to turn around. You want to find the kid to make sure they're not in danger.
Advertising agencies have been using this trick for generations. Have you ever been in the house and heard a kid crying? You stop, try to figure out where the crying is coming from, only to remember the kids aren't even home.
It's just a TV commercial in another room. But it got your attention.
Swedish ad agency Forsman & Bodenfors is taking advantage of our human nature, for a good reason. They're making sure that drivers are paying attention when they're driving around school-age children. It has developed the Slow Down GPS voice navigation app.
The app works just like the GPS system you have in your car, or on your smartphone. The big difference is that when you're driving near a school or daycare center, the GPS voice goes from the regular adult telling you to make a left or a right, to the voice of a child. The GPS has school locations programmed into it.
The idea is that the small child's voice will trigger that same, stop-and-check reaction we have when we hear a kid crying. Ideally, drivers will remember to slow down, and pay attention.
Even if it's just for a few minutes. As soon as you drive past the school, Slow Down GPS switches back to an adult voice.