'You Can!' Stop Smoking Campaign

Personal stories from ex-smokers injects emotion into new quit smoking campaign

Hitch Marketing have been working with Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership (GMHSCP) to deliver a major new campaign to encourage smokers across Greater Manchester to quit. The campaign launched on National No Smoking Day (13 March) and aims to help tens of thousands more Greater Manchester smokers to quit.

The new ‘ex-smoker’ campaign centres on the real life experiences of former smokers from across Greater Manchester, providing a positive message that you can stop smoking. While reminding smokers of the serious health impacts of tobacco, the focus is more on the personal benefits of quitting, as experienced by these local residents.

The brand concept ‘You Can’ will unite all quit marketing communications activity over the next 2-3 years to ensure a consistent look and feel is communicated to residents. The concept aims to empower residents and was based on a detailed review and understanding of audience segments.

Real ‘ex-smokers’ and accompanying messages have been chosen that resonate with the audience segments, all who want to quit smoking. Insight has been used to develop messaging that resonates with smokers under the age of 30. Messages focus on immediate benefits of quitting, including feeling healthy and being more in control.

They include Jacub Sabo-Dutten, of Stockport, who started smoking at the age of twelve. He says: “I would have paid for cigarettes over food at one point of my life. It might take time, and a lot of effort, to quit – but you can definitely do it.”

Many of the campaign participants described feeling trapped by smoking and talk about the freedom they feel after stopping.

Charlotte Makin and her partner Harry Ingham, both from Bury, quit when Charlotte became pregnant. She says: “You think it’s going to be hard. But once you quit you’ve got all your time back, you’ve got more money, you can breathe better and you’re not smelling of smoke.”

Hitch Marketing lead on the Strategy, Creative, Photography and deliver of OOH campaign activity.  Koala has led on the TV and Radio adverts.  The mass media campaign features advertising on ITV Granada, Sky Adsmart and video on demand services; commercial local radio, social media, online, local news media, and on outdoor display locations across Greater Manchester and will run for 6 weeks.

“I would have paid for cigarettes over food at one point of my life. It might take time, and a lot of effort, to quit – but you can definitely do it.”

Jude Hackett, Campaign Strategy Director from Hitch Marketing, said: “This fully integrated marketing campaign has allowed us to reframe the quit process in a positive way. We want to invite smokers to discover what they can be when they quit smoking.  It’s been a fantastic opportunity to work with an ambitious client to help people quit smoking and save more lives across Greater Manchester."

The campaign launches as new analysis reveals that between 2012 and 2017 (the most recent figures available) more than 400 people a week successfully stopped smoking in Greater Manchester.

Jacub from stockport said:

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