NHS Smokefree Generation comes out top in the Best Use of TV in an Intergrated Campaign category at the TV Planning Awards
Smoking is still the biggest cause of preventable death in the UK. The Department of Health's marketing activity has contributed to the steady decline in smoking among all adults; however, the hardest to influence audience has been routine and manual (blue-collar) workers. The goal in this campaign was to demonstrate the harm right here, right now. It made the most of further research showing that family is incredibly important to this audience; the notion that they could be harming their children was likely to be a strong motivational factor.
To influence the hard to reach audience of routine and manual workers using the harm that smoking causes to families as a motivational factor.
A strategy of disrupting the audience's routine by hitting it with emotionally charged messages in times and places where attention was likely to he high - notably soaps on ITV1. The personalised power of the message was enhanced by children addressing the audience directly and its immediacy was amplified by them referring to the programming environment - "Hey mum, I know you're watching Corrie" - they appeared in. The ITV1 core campaign (including pre-rolls on video-on-demand catch-up) was enhanced by a campaign on Living (referencing the channel instead programme).
The campaign caused the attitudinal tracking measure of "These ads made me think more deeply about the impact of smoking on my family and loved ones" to rise to 68 per cent from a base of 64 per cent, resulting in a record 2,101 calls being made to the NHS Smoking Helpline (source: COI/Artemis). The TV cost per response was less than a third of the previous best-performing campaign (source: Artemis). This campaign won the Best Use of TV in an Integrated Campaign Award at TV Planning Awards, with Take One Small Step for Barclays and Dulux What Would You Change as runners up.
Paul Brewer, the head of marketing, tobacco control, Change4Life and alcohol at the Department of Health, says that the campaign successfully managed to engage the target audience with the message
that smoking is the enemy of the family: "Integration between our creative and communications planning agencies to deliver an innovative solution has helped make strides towards our long-term goal of reducing smoking prevalence of routine and manual workers in England."