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Stop smoking campaign hits the heart

We’ve just finished work on Be there Tomorrow, Smokefree South West’s hard-hitting and emotive campaign to reduce smoking rates in the region.

The ten-week campaign highlighted the little-known fact that 1 in 2 smokers will die as a result of smoking. However, this statistic has been in the public domain for a number of years, so we commissioned a survey to provide a strong regional news hook to interest the media.

We decided to find out whether people in the South West were aware of the true dangers smoking and discovered that the public hugely underestimate the impact of smoking on health. As many as 90% believe fewer people are affected and a staggering 20% think that only 1 in 10 smokers die as a result of their habit.

We used the research findings to drive a news story which generated coverage across all our regional and local press targets including ITV West & West Country and BBC Points West.

To maintain momentum, we mined the survey a second time to tease out the emotional impact of smoking on families, to tie in with the theme of the advertising campaign. We backed this up with sensitively written local case studies which enabled us to deliver a double whammy of coverage including a second hit on ITV West & West Country.

The campaign is the climax of a year-long project working with Smokefree South West, which provided 74m ‘opportunities to see’ through 550 media hits, generating a 22-fold return on investment.

Kate Knight, head of social marketing & communications at Smokefree South West said, “It has been fantastic having Spirit on board, they are a flexible and experienced team.  Over the last year they have provided effective proactive and reactive PR support on a range of topics which culminated in the successful launch of our new “Be there tomorrow” campaign.  We are pleased with the coverage achieved in the South West regional and local TV, radio and press which significantly extended the reach of our paid-for media campaigns.  We hope to work with Spirit again in the near future.”

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