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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Evaluation of a Social Media Campaign Designed to Increase Awareness of Thirdhand Smoke among California Adults


Despite a growing body of research outlining the harms of thirdhand smoke (THS), the public remains generally unaware of risks and exposure routes. This project built on past tobacco prevention campaigns and the tenants of McGuire's input-output model to implement and evaluate a seven-month Facebook-disseminated campaign seeking to improve THS awareness among California adults (n = 1087). Multilinear regression showed that THS-related knowledge (χ2[6] = 19.31, p < .01), attitude (χ2[6] = 13.88, p < .05), and efficacy (χ2[6] = 13.81, p < .05) significantly increased by the campaign's end, with messages highlighting children's health (r = .110, p < .05), pets (r = .145, p < .01), and dust reservoirs (r = .144, p < .01) as the most persuasive. Path analysis modeling found campaign recall to be associated with changes in knowledge (β = .161, p < .01), which predicated attitude change (β = .614, p < .001) and, in turn, behavior change (β = .149, p < .05). Findings suggest social media campaigns should continue to educate diverse populations about new tobacco risks and that tobacco control advocates should consider integrating educational THS messages.

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