The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) estimates that more than 4
million African American, Hispanic and Asian American youth are open to smoking or are already experimenting with cigarettes. To prevent and reduce tobacco use among youth, the FDA started the anti-tobacco campaign called Fresh Empire at the end of 2015 targeted at this so-called hip hop generation. You can learn more about the Fresh Empire campaign here and here.
I first saw the an advertisement for the
campaign on BET and had to look it up because it looked so different from other campaigns
that I had seen from the FDA, mainly The Real Cost campaign. The FDA has made a significant commitment to anti-tobacco measures, starting with their Real Cost campaign. There is a story about the campaign of Ad Week here.
These kinds of campaigns are really interesting to me for a variety of reasons. They make me think about the most effective messages and channels to reach sometimes disenfranchised, minority youth in the United States. They also brought to mind something I had been wondering for a very long time: Do these ads air in the Caribbean region? Are young people in the region exposed to these ads? And if so, do they have any effect on Caribbean youth?
I’d love to see some communication- or public health-oriented research on how these types of campaigns are affecting perceptions about smoking among racial/ethnic minority youth, and if those effects extend beyond the US borders. In any event, it’s a cool-looking campaign that I wanted to share.