Design and Feasibility Testing of the truth FinishIt Tobacco Countermarketing Brand Equity Scale

W. Douglas Evans, Jessica Rath, Lindsay Pitzer, Elizabeth C. Hair, Jeremy Snider, Jennifer Cantrell, Donna Vallone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The original truth campaign was a branded, national smoking prevention mass media effort focused on at-risk youth ages 12–17. Today the truth brand focuses on the goal of finishing tobacco (truth FinishIt). There have been significant changes in the tobacco control landscape, leading FinishIt to focus on 15- to 21-year-olds. The present article reports on formative research and media monitoring data collected to pilot test a new truth FinishIt brand equity scale. The goals of this study were to (a) content analyze truth FinishIt mass media ads, (b) assess truth’s social media and followers’ perceptions of truth’s digital brand identity, and (c) develop and feasibility test a new version of the truth FinishIt brand equity scale using data from an existing Truth Initiative media monitoring study. Through factor analysis, we identified a brand equity scale, as in previous research, consisting of 4 main constructs: brand loyalty, leadership/satisfaction, personality, and awareness. Targeted truth attitudes and beliefs about social perceptions, acceptability, and industry-related beliefs were regressed on the higher order factor and each of the 4 individual brand equity factors. Ordinary least squares regression models generally showed associations in the expected directions (positive for anti-tobacco and negative for pro-tobacco) between targeted attitudes/beliefs and truth FinishIt brand equity. This study succeeded in developing and validating a new truth FinishIt brand equity scale. The scale may be a valuable metric for future campaign evaluation. Future studies should examine the effects of truth FinishIt brand equity on tobacco use behavioral outcomes over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)800-808
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Health Communication
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Communication
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Library and Information Sciences


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