The Human Element of Media Messages


It's common knowledge that smoking causes health issues that increase the risk of death--not an insignificant price to pay for lighting up. But, in spite of this widespread knowledge, thousands of people pick up the deadly habit every day, and just as many people struggle to quit once and for all.

"The typical smoker faces multiple quit attempts," says Grete Krohn Lavrenz, senior counselor at Carmichael Lynch Spong. "Each setback confirms the struggles against the addiction of tobacco."

This reality was just one of the challenges faced by the team of executives at ClearWay Minnesota and agency partner Carmichael Lynch Spong when launching their QUITPLAN Services campaign. Lavrenz highlights the following challenges and identifies the strategies implemented to overcome them:

  • What's in it for me? "A challenge we face when communicating about QUITPLAN Services is making the messages relevant and putting a 'human face' on smoking so people are inspired to quit," Lavrenz says. "We have accomplished this with the powerful, visual exhibit featuring QUITPLAN Services quitters' success stories, which continues to recognize happy and successful quitters.

  • Pulling the trigger: "Additionally, every smoker has a different quit trigger. We try to address this in our communications through positive messaging, reach out throughout the year to encourage quitting anytime someone is ready and come up with unique reasons and incentives to help inspire a quit date," Lavrenz says. "A new tactic was tried with the launch of The QuitCash Challenge, which provided a financial incentive to quit smoking during a specific time for monetary reward. It inspired 2,500 Minnesotans to attempt to quit."

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