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Centre for Behavioural
Research in Cancer

Understanding effects of tobacco control campaigns on low socioeconomic smokers in the United States

This project analysed data from a cohort study in the United States to assess which types of mass media messages might reduce disparities in smoking prevalence among disadvantaged population subgroups. We followed 1491 adult smokers over 24 months and related quitting status at follow-up to exposure to antismoking ads in the two years prior to the baseline assessment. The odds of having quit at follow-up increased by 11% with each 10 additional potential ad exposures (per 1000 gross ratings points (GRPs). Greater exposure to ads that contained highly emotional elements or personal stories drove this effect, which was greater among respondents with low and mid-socioeconomic status than among high-socioeconomic status groups. Emotionally evocative ads and ads that contain personalized stories about the effects of smoking and quitting hold promise for efforts to promote smoking cessation and reduce socioeconomic disparities in smoking.

CBRC staff

A/Prof Sarah Durkin, Prof Melanie Wakefield


Dr Lois Biener (University of Massachusetts Boston, USA)


Yamagiwa Yoshida Memorial International Study Fellowship, Union for International Cancer Control


2008 - 2009