The contribution of antismoking advertising to quitting: intra- and interpersonal processes

J Health Commun. 2008 Apr-May;13(3):250-66. doi: 10.1080/10810730801985301.


This study explored the roles of transportability-the tendency to become absorbed in a narrative-and interpersonal discussion in the use of televised antismoking advertising in attempts to quit smoking. We used data from a representative population survey of adults (n = 2,999), examining responses from current smokers (n = 594) and former smokers who had quit in the last 5 years (n = 167). Logistic regression analysis revealed that current and former smokers higher in transportability were more likely to recall an antismoking ad (OR = 1.08, p < .001), and to perceive they had been helped by antismoking advertising in their attempts to quit smoking (OR = 1.05, p < .01). Transportability also was related to the recall of narrative antismoking advertisements (OR = 1.06, p < .05). Among current smokers, those who engaged in interpersonal discussion about any antismoking advertising were more likely to have made a quit attempt (OR = 2.76, p < .001). Finally, individuals were most likely to discuss advertising containing information about the negative health consequences of smoking using graphic images or simulations of bodily processes. These results suggest that the effectiveness of antismoking advertising is dependent upon both intra- and interpersonal processes that are triggered by the advertisements.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Advertising / methods*
  • Advertising / standards
  • Attitude to Health
  • Female
  • Health Promotion / methods*
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Smoking Cessation / methods*
  • Smoking Cessation / psychology
  • Social Marketing