Arnold Lays Down ‘Harsh Facts’

Hub Shop Unveils Mixed-Media Effort for Tobacco Compliance
BOSTON–Arnold Communications, in the midst of preparing for the next phase of the $150-225 million national anti-smoking competition, last week broke its latest tobacco compliance ad campaign for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The five-month, $5 million effort seeks to increase compliance with federal regulations prohibiting the sale of tobacco to minors.
Ads continue the theme, “Selling cigarettes to children is illegal. For a reason,” a line introduced last year by Arnold in efforts for the Rockville, Md.-based FDA. Once again, both retailers and consumers are targeted.
A newspaper ad poses the question: “What would make you madder? A retailer selling cigarettes to a kid who’s: a) 9; b) 14; or c) yours?”
A radio spot features a mock game show in which the host announces that one of every three smokers will die from the habit, then picks which one of his three youthful contestants will suffer this fate.
The ads are designed to “let people hear the harsh facts [about smoking] and link that to a clear message,” said FDA official Sharon Natanblut. “You can’t just say: ‘Here’s a law, do it.’ You have to give them a reason to comply.”
TV ads are being tested and will likely air in September, said Arnold senior vice president Barbara Reilly.
Print, radio and outdoor executions are running statewide in New Hampshire, Tennessee, Michigan, Colorado and Nevada. The campaign is also appearing in Augusta, Maine; Bridgeport, Conn.; Rochester, N.Y.; Washington, D.C.; Roanoke, Va.; Rockford, Ill.; Lawton, Okla.; Macon, Ga.; Lafayette, La.; San Antonio, Texas; and Springfield, Mo.
“This gives us a good cross-section” of the country, Reilly said. Ads are running in some of the 42 states that have compliance contracts with the FDA, she said.
Arnold, teaming with Crispin Porter & Bogusky in Miami, was chosen as a semifinalist for the national anti-smoking account [Adweek, Aug. 2]. The others are The Richards Group in Dallas and Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners and Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG, both in New York. Los Angeles-based Western Initiative Media is aiding both Richards and KB&P.