Ad Council partners with Amazon to target teen mental health

The Ad Council has partnered with Amazon’s ad division to present music played through Alexa as a way for parents or caregivers to talk about mental health with young people.

The feature—which is available on and is called “When You Can’t Say It, Play It”—falls under the Ad Council’s “Sound It Out” campaign, created in 2021 in partnership with Melinda Gates’ investment company Pivotal Ventures to help parents talk about mental health with their middle schoolers. The campaign is part of the Ad Council’s Mental Health Initiative, on which it aims to spend $65 million during the next seven years.

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Parents and caregivers can go to Amazon’s “Sound It Out” campaign page, created by Amazon Ads’ Brand Innovation Lab, and type an emotion into a search bar such as “happy” or “frustrated.” The search yields a list of songs that represent the feeling. They can use Alexa, through an Echo device or a free Alexa app, to share the song with their teenager.

“Through this interactive feature, we can provide them with the tools — like sharing a beautiful song — to break through and normalize checking in on their teen’s emotional well-being,” said the Ad Council’s Chief Campaign Development Officer Heidi Arthur in a statement.

The tool will be promoted through a film, “Muchas Flores,” produced by Amazon Ads’ Brand Innovation Lab. The film shows a parent struggling to talk to their upset teenager, before sending them a song to listen to at school. The spot will run on Amazon’s owned and third-party platforms including streaming video, digital, audio, Fire TV and Amazon’s interactive ads.