Winner of two Emmy Awards for best TV spots of the year.
What we do
Public Interest creates bold, attention-grabbing public service advertising. We specialize in making people pay attention.
Public Interest partners with nonprofit organizations to help them deliver their message. We learn everything we can about our partners, their message and their audience. Then we do what it takes to get the message through.
Why we do it
Public Interest is run by a small group of people who want to change the world. We work only on causes that we believe in, and we won’t produce anything unless we are convinced it will succeed. Our goal is to make a difference.
Public Interest spots get seen. We will not produce great work only to see it stranded at 4:00 a.m. in the slots that no paying advertiser wanted. We get our work on the right networks at the right times. So far, networks and cable operators have donated more than $350 million to run our spots.
Networks & cable operators
Public Interest has produced more public service advertising for MTV than anyone except for the network itself. We have also partnered with VH1, CBS, Nickelodeon, UPN, Univision and other networks. And we created all national spots for Time Warner Cable’s recent $100M five-year initiative, Connect A Million Minds. These relationships are part of the reason our spots get on air.
Public Interest produces PSAs that are disguised as entertainment. No one walks away from the TV when our spots come on. We always do what it takes to make people pay attention. Top-notch production values are essential to achieving this.
Public Interest has a knack for turning tiny budgets into big production values. We have special relationships with entertainment industry vendors and crew that allow us to keep costs way down. We know that donor dollars are precious, and we leverage each dollar at least four-fold in producing our spots.
Not just TV spots
Public Interest creates campaigns that span TV, print, online, outdoor and guerilla. Communicating simultaneously in multiple mediums multiplies the chances of breaking through. Often most critical is earned media; we take great pride in our track record of creating news to focus attention on the issues our partners care about.
PRESIDENT / CREATIVE DIRECTOR
Michael Franzini has more than two decades of experience creating powerful ad campaigns for both nonprofit and corporate clients. His work has garnered dozens of ad industry awards.
Franzini is also an Emmy-Award-winning director, and his TV spots have twice been highlighted by The New York Times as being among the best advertising on television.
As a photographer and writer, Franzini has published several books, including One Hundred Young Americans, the definitive survey of 21st century American youth culture, released by HarperCollins.
Nicholas Carter is an accomplished television and print producer with a proven ability to maximize the impact of limited budgets, especially on geographically large-scale projects that span the country—or the globe.
Carter brings his peaceful and fun demeanor to every project, no matter how great the challenge. His goal is always to exceed expectations while staying on-time and on-budget, and he has a perfect record of achieving this goal on every project.
CLIENTS AND PARTNERS
NY TIMES STORY ON OUR MTV 'PROTECT YOURSELF' CAMPAIGN
LA TIMES WRITE-UP OF OUR PROJECT WITH ROCK THE VOTE
USA TODAY PIECE ON OUR WHITE BEDROOM CAMPAIGN
HERALD FEATURE ON OUR HOLOCAUST CAMPAIGN
ADWEEK REVIEW OF HOLOCAUST SPOTS
NY TIMES ON ROCK THE VOTE
GENRE MAGAZINE COVERS WHITE BEDROOM
ADWEEK FEATURE ON PUBLIC INTEREST
EDWEEK ON STAND UP
SF CHRONICLE ON WHITE BEDROOM
VARIETY FEATURE ON PUBLIC INTEREST
AD AGE ON MTV: PROTECT YOURSELF
GENRE FEATURE ON PUBLIC INTEREST
SHOOT COVERS HOLOCAUST SPOTS
FRANZINI ON ABC NEWS
METRO COVERS I KNOW CAMPAIGN
LA TIMES ON PUPPY THAT MOOS
PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY REVIEW OF 100 YOUNG AMERICANS
NY POST ON 100 YOUNG AMERICANS
NY TIMES ON PUBLIC INTEREST
This is our work.
PLEASE BE PATIENT IF THERE’S A SHORT DELAY IN LOADING CONTENT.
TAX-DEDUCTIBLE DONATIONS TO PUBLIC INTEREST
ABOUT OUR 501(C)(3) STATUS
The IRS granted 501(c)(3) nonprofit status to Public Interest in 1998.
From 2010 through 2016, we produced cause-driven campaigns through X-UP (www.x-up.com), with the same management, staff and freelancers as Public Interest.
These campaigns were for clients such as Time Warner Cable, Johnson & Johnson, and NBC Television; our nonprofit status was not relevant for them, and we allowed it to lapse.
Early in 2017, Public Interest re-applied for 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, and that application is now pending.
The IRS permits us to accept donations while the application is pending and, once it is approved, those donations will (retroactively) be fully tax-deductible. We anticipate approval by the end of the 2017 calendar year, but this is uncertain.
If you prefer—or if your organization can only grant funds to entities that have current 501(c)(3) status—you can make fully tax-deductible donations, in any amount, to our fiscal sponsor, and the funds will be applied to the Public Interest project you wish to support.
Our fiscal sponsor is Change Hearts and Minds, a Colorado-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Their EIN is 81-4954470.
If you made a donation to Public Interest in 2017 and you need documentation for tax purposes, please contact us.
Fiscal sponsorship is a practice encouraged by the IRS. You can read more about it here.
Get in touch if you have questions about this.