The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) launched their campaign Tips From Former Smokers in March 2012. The campaign features former smokers sharing their stories about the health effects they have experienced from smoking. The advertisements use hard-hitting graphics to display the severity of these diseases, which include cancer, stomas, paralysis, limb amputations and heart attack. The majority of the population is aware of the dangers of smoking, as anti-smoking advertisements and educational campaigns have been promoted for decades. However, this campaign provides smokers with further knowledge surrounding the immediate health damage caused by smoking.
The CDC employs tactics of fueling fears to induce people to quit smoking through using shocking videos. The campaign uses real people, not actors, which makes the message they are presenting more powerful because it is honest and truthful. Not only does this message encourage people to quit smoking, it will help prevent people from starting in the first place as they want to avoid suffering from severe illness and disability, like those who appear in the campaign. Research has shown that advertisements that illustrate the impact of tobacco use, as well as encouragement and information about how to quit, motivate people to quit smoking and save lives. These advertisements are particularly effective because they make people feel that this could happen to them, as the experiences shown are of ordinary people. This stimulates emotions such as fear, as people sympathize for those who are suffering and become afraid of this happening to them.
(Brittany Cooper, Comm 335-1, campaign, fueling fears, anti-smoking)