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Perceived Effectiveness of Tobacco Countermarketing Advertisements Among Young Adults

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Objectives : To measure relative effectiveness of tobacco countermarketing advertisements by category and emotive execution style among young adults.

Methods : Participants (n=1011) from 2 US 4-year colleges, one southern and one northern were surveyed before and after viewing advertisements in one of 3 categories: social norms, health consequences, or tobacco industry manipulation and with 4 emotive execution styles: drama, testimonial (negative emotive) and humor, sarcasm (positive).

Results : Health consequences and negative emotive advertisements were rated significantly most persuasive.

Conclusions : This is the first study to support the effectiveness of tobacco countermarketing advertisements emphasizing the negative emotive health consequences of smoking among young adults.

Keywords: advertisement; antitobacco messages; countermarketing; mass media

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1 Assistant Professor, Department of Communication, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, GA.

Publication date: November 1, 2008

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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