Interpersonal communication as an indirect pathway for the effect of antismoking media content on smoking cessation.
ABSTRACT In the context of health campaigns, interpersonal communication can serve at least 2 functions: (a) to stimulate change through social interaction and (b) in a secondary diffusion process, to further disseminate message content. In a 3-wave prospective study of 1,079 smokers, the authors demonstrate that mass media messages (antismoking campaigns and news coverage relevant to smoking cessation) have an indirect effect on smoking cessation intention and behavior via interpersonal communication. Exposure to campaigns and news coverage prompts discussion about the campaigns, and, in turn, about smoking cessation. Interpersonal communication regarding smoking cessation then influences intention to quit smoking and attempts to quit smoking. The study finds evidence not only for the social interaction function of interpersonal communication, but also for the secondary diffusion function. A substantial number of smokers who are not directly exposed to the antismoking campaigns are nevertheless indirectly exposed via communication with people who have seen these campaigns. These results imply that encouragement of interpersonal communication can be an important campaign objective.
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ABSTRACT: The present study experimentally investigated the interplay between interpersonal communication and health message exposure in relation to alcohol consumption intentions. Participants were 174 students who took part in a study on the effects of an antialcohol message. At baseline, the authors assessed intention to refrain from binge drinking. At the second wave (2 weeks later), participants were assigned to the conditions of a 2 (antialcohol message or no-alcohol message) × 2 (alcohol conversation or control conversation) between-subjects design, after which intention was again assessed. Results showed that when participants talked about alcohol (instead of the control topic) and were not exposed to an antialcohol message, they were less inclined to refrain from binge drinking, an effect that was not visible when participants talked about alcohol after viewing an antialcohol message. These findings suggest that health campaign exposure moderates the influence of interpersonal communication on health variables.Journal of Health Communication 01/2014; DOI:10.1080/10810730.2013.837552 · 1.61 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Objectives. Although research has shown that whether people talk about health issues influences health campaign effects, no evidence exists on whether conversational valence fulfils a mediating role within health campaign effects. In the context of alcohol consumption, this two-wave experimental research studies the effects of exposure to an anti-alcohol message on conversational valence about alcohol. Further, it investigates whether valence subsequently affects alcohol consumption intentions. Design. Eighty-four undergraduate students, in dyads, were randomly assigned to one of two conditions (anti-alcohol message vs. no alcohol message exposure). Methods. A baseline measure of the intention to refrain from binge drinking was assessed in advance. Two weeks later, half of the participants were exposed to an anti-alcohol message, after which all pairs engaged in a conversation about alcohol and binge drinking followed by an assessment of conversational valence and again the intention to refrain from binge drinking. Results. An indirect effect of health message exposure on the intention to refrain from binge drinking through conversational valence was revealed. When participants viewed an anti-alcohol message, they reported significantly more negative conversations about alcohol. Subsequently, a more negative conversational valence about alcohol increased the intention to refrain from binge drinking. Conclusions. These findings suggest that conversational valence is relevant for health campaign effects. By demonstrating that health messages can influence this valence, important implications arise in terms of health promotion. Future research should focus on how to design effective health campaigns that are able to guide conversational valence in the desired direction. STATEMENT OF CONTRIBUTION: WHAT IS ALREADY KNOWN ON THIS SUBJECT? : • Whether people talk about health issues is a relevant intervening variable within the health message - health intention pathway. • The valence of health conversations influences health intentions. WHAT DOES THIS STUDY ADD? : • Not only whether people talk, but also the valence of health conversations is a relevant intervening variable within health campaign effects. • Health message exposure can influence conversational valence. This valence can consequently influence health intentions. Thereby, this study holds important implications for health campaign planners.British Journal of Health Psychology 05/2012; 17(4):843-53. DOI:10.1111/j.2044-8287.2012.02080.x · 2.70 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: This review summarises the impact of mass media campaigns on promoting quitting among adult smokers overall and for subgroups; the influence of campaign intensity and different channels; the effects of different message types. The present work updates two reviews published in 2008 by searching databases using a standard search string. Articles in languages other than English were excluded, as well as letters and editorials. Screening of abstracts yielded 194 potentially relevant articles. Abstracts were evaluated by 2 authors, excluding articles that focused on populations other than adults and according to other specified criteria, resulting in 26 studies reported in 29 articles. Studies were categorised as (a) population-based studies of campaign effects and (b) studies comparing message types, using either population-based or forced exposure methods. Findings of subgroup differences for each study were noted, as well as study strengths and limitations. Overall, the studies have strengthened the evidence that mass media campaigns conducted in the context of comprehensive tobacco control programmes can promote quitting and reduce adult smoking prevalence, but that campaign reach, intensity, duration and message type may influence success. Achievement of sufficient population exposure is vital, especially for lower socioeconomic status smokers, with television remaining the primary channel to effectively reach and influence adult smokers. Studies comparing different message types found negative health effects messages most effective at generating increased knowledge, beliefs, positive perceived effectiveness ratings, or quitting behaviour, while there was more mixed evidence for other message types. A few studies further suggest that negative health effects messages may also contribute to reductions in socioeconomic disparities in smoking. Mass media campaigns to promote quitting are important investments as part of comprehensive tobacco control programmes to educate about the harms of smoking, set the agenda for discussion, change smoking attitudes and beliefs, increase quitting intentions and quit attempts, and reduce adult smoking prevalence. Jurisdictions should aim for high reach and consistent exposure over time with preference towards negative health effects messages.Tobacco control 03/2012; 21(2):127-38. DOI:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2011-050345 · 5.15 Impact Factor