A new Ad Council PSA encourages dads to bond with their kids by getting the family on their feet to #DanceLikeaDad.

By Kaitlin Lowe
June 14, 2019
dance like a dad

For 21 years, I desperately avoided attending a daddy-daughter dance. I thought I was too cool and my dad’s moves too lame. Until recently, I counted myself as one of the lucky ones. But having just seen Ad Council’s new #DanceLikeaDad campaign, now I’m wondering if I missed out on the fun of grooving to "Footloose" like this dad and daughter duo below.

That father’s freestyle might not earn a perfect 10, but that’s OK. AdCouncil’s new campaign, #DanceLikeaDad, is about winning over “the hearts of their most important audience—their kids,” and spending quality, memory-making time together.

It’s no coincidence that the #DanceLikeaDad initiative is just in time for Father’s Day. What dads want is more time with their kids, according to the PEW Research Center. Seven in 10 dads “could use tips on being a better parent.” In a survey of parents who work, almost half of dads (48 percent) felt they spent too little time with their children, compared to 26 percent of moms who felt the same way about their time. We know that working mom guilt is very real and common (we almost didn’t get a third Adele album because of it), but working dad guilt? Luckily, the #DanceLikeaDad campaign is at once acknowledging the dads who want more kid time and encouraging a free, easy way to get it.

The fun, family-bonding initiative was created in partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families, which aims to “strengthen positive father-child engagement.” Doing so can have remarkable impact on all areas of a child’s health. Children who have a father or father figure present throughout their life (whether they live with the child or not) perform better in school and enjoy improved physical and emotional well-being, including traits like self-esteem, self-control, and empathy.

Other organizations partnered with Ad Council for the #DanceLikeaDad campaign include the National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse (NRFC) and Campbell Ewald. Director for the NRFC puts it well: “Father’s Day is a holiday where we come out to honor dads. However, fathers should be honored year-round because it’s clear that when fathers show up for their kids consistently, those children and families flourish.”

Dads are showing up on social media to post their own #DanceLikeaDad videos, and they’ve got some unique moves worth watching:

Even if it might be too late to teach Dad some new moves, #DanceLikeaDad reminds us that it’s never too late to spend quality time with the kids.