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Prev Med. 1999 Nov;29(5):313-20.

Exposure to brand-specific cigarette advertising in magazines and its impact on youth smoking.

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Social and Behavioral Sciences Department, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts 02118, USA.



Despite the potential influence of cigarette advertising on youth smoking, few studies have characterized brand-specific magazine advertising exposure among youths or examined its impact on youth smoking behavior.


A longitudinal youth survey was conducted to assess baseline exposure to brand-specific cigarette advertising in magazines and to measure subsequent smoking behavior. The sample comprised 1,069 Massachusetts youths, ages 12-15 years at baseline in 1993, and 627 of these youths who were interviewed after 4 years.


Five brands accounted for 81.8% of the gross impressions for magazine advertising among Massachusetts youths. These same brands accounted for 88.4% of the brand market share among 12- to 15-year-old smokers nationally in 1993. The levels of brand-specific advertising exposure in the sample were highly correlated with these national brand market shares (r = 0.96, P = 0. 0002). Among the cohort, baseline brand-specific exposure to cigarette advertising in magazines was highly correlated with brand of initiation among new smokers (r = 0.93, P = 0.0001), brand smoked by current smokers (r = 0.86, P = 0.0004), and brand whose advertisements attracted attention the most (r = 0.87, P = 0.0002).


By documenting a relationship between brand-specific magazine advertising exposure and brand of smoking initiation among new smokers, this study provides strong new evidence that cigarette advertising influences youth smoking.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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