Sharing Quit Stories Through Relatable People

Emily Del Favero

From 2014 – 2017, DaviesMoore served as the agency-of-record for Project Filter—Idaho Health and Welfare’s Tobacco Cessation Program. DaviesMoore’s charge was to develop and execute a comprehensive creative strategy that would increase online and phone enrollments in the Quit Tobacco Program.

In August 2015, Project Filter challenged DaviesMoore to increase website traffic by 50%. DaviesMoore achieved this goal through developing Project Filter’s first ever 360-advertising campaign in winter and spring of 2016.

In 2015, we partnered with Project Filter to study available data on the program’s target audiences. Our target focused on Idaho adults, ages 18 – 49. Our media would specifically target subgroups of the LGBT community, individuals of low socio-economic status, Hispanics, and Native Americans.

After evaluating audience data and historical campaigns, our discovery process began with focus group testing. We dug into messaging and tested different storytelling tactics, searching for an approach that would connect with our audience on a personal level. Through this process, we found that a “scare-tactic” approach wasn’t motivating or inspiring to our target demographics. Instead, we assessed different approaches that would portray an upbeat and relatable message.

After finding ideas that resonated with our audience, we began developing a concept that would convey authenticity and relevance. Insights from our focus group testing informed a new creative campaign, titled “Real Idahoans.” By capturing actual quit stories, the messaging was motivational, honest, and realistic.

The “Real Idahoans” concept grew into a robust series of video testimonials from Idahoans who had quit smoking. For the first time, we created long-format versions of quit stories so that people could watch the full story behind a 30-second spot. We provided our target audiences with easy-to-consume, sharable content. After the success of our first round of videos, we created a second round targeting pregnant women, young mothers, and ex-military personnel.

By fall of 2015, the “Real Idahoans” campaign expanded into an array of assets, including traditional, digital, and out-of-home pieces, with heavy media placement during the first and second quarters of 2016.

From the video storytelling, the DaviesMoore media team developed a statewide media plan, spanning television, radio, outdoor, digital, and print tactics. The media plan also leveraged newer media channels, such as YouTube pre-roll and Pandora, to drive multiple impressions. Relationships with media partners yielded huge placement wins, including placement during the 2016 Rio Olympics and Super Bowl LI.

The “Real Idahoans” campaign drove unprecedented web traffic results. The number of new users jumped from 6,254 in 2014 to 20,454 in 2015 and 21,346 in 2016—driving a 300% increase in sessions over 2014. In the first two months alone of 2016, new users to the Project Filter website already equaled 50% of 2015’s total new users.

In other campaign results, Project Filter’s social activity also grew, increasing by 42% in Facebook followers between January 2015 – January 2016.

Overall, “Real Idahoans” drove spectacular results across impressions, clicks to website, and quitline enrollments. By looking at front-end (media analytics), back-end (website analytics), and generated conversations (quitline data—call enrollments and online enrollments), all 2016 metrics increased among Idaho residents. “Real Idahoans” media will continue to run throughout the remainder of 2017.