Exploring Persuasiveness of Non Cigarette Tobacco Product (NCTP) Advertising on Young Adults Project Summary/Abstract The declining rates of cigarette smoking in the United States and increases in smoke-free ordinances2 have prompted US tobacco companies to introduce such as snus, dissolvables, and electronic cigarettes raising public health concern about the ease of nicotine availability and extensive variety in the increasing tobacco market.6 The aggressive marketing approaches have resulted in a flooding of NCTP advertisements in magazines, with a high penetration in magazines with substantial young adult readership.11;38;40The growing public health concern regarding the persuasive impact of aggressive NCTP marketing and young adult uptake of NCTPs thereby resulting in sustained nicotine addiction has been voiced by the latest Surgeon General's report on preventing tobacco use2 and raised as a research priority by the Food and Drug Administration's (FDAS's) Center for Tobacco Products.12 Some recent studies have reported highest awareness and experimentation of NCTPs by young adults,3;5;29;71;72 therefore raising the imminent need for public health communication to develop interventions and campaigns to create resistance to tobacco companies'marketing strategies and prevent uptake of NCTPs. The proposed study is an important first-step in that direction. It applies a well-established social-psychological framework (the Elaboration Likelihood Model of Persuasion or the ELM)14 to understand the persuasive framing of NCTP advertisements and subsequent impact on young adults. The proposed project will be completed in two phases during a one-year period. The first phase, a content analysis of NCTP print advertisements (specifically for snus, dissolvables, and electronic cigarettes) in magazines with highest young adult readership will provide qualitative data on an array of persuasive strategies used to promote NCTPs. Utilizing a proprietary web-based database, Stradegy, compiled by Kantar Media Intelligence,13 the data for content analysis will be made available to the research team in a short amount of time. The content analysis will provide a complete listing of specific NCTP print advertisements, frequency of advertisement placement, and an identification of persuasive rhetorical, textual, and visual themes used in each advertisement respectively. This first phase will provide us with an array of approximately 100 distinct NCTP advertising print images. Guided by the ELM,14 the second phase of the proposed research will be an online survey study (administered in partnership with Zoomerang, an online survey company) to understand the persuasive impact (by measuring advertisement comprehension, liking, credibility, affect, and overall appraisal) of NCTP advertisements on a nationally representative panel of 1,000 young adults. The long-term objective of this research plan is to develop and pilot test media-literacy based counter-marketing interventions for discouraging NCTP experimentation and poly-tobacco use in young adults.
Advertisements about non-cigarette tobacco products (NCTPS;such as snus, dissolvables, and electronic cigarettes) have started flooding magazines with highest youth readership, increasing the risk of NCTP adoption and sustained nicotine dependence. Understanding persuasiveness of these NCTP advertisements by young adults will provide the foundational step to develop a counter-advertising NCTP intervention to confer resistance against tobacco marketing.