If ‘smoking kills’ doesn’t work, maybe the shock-value of these advertisements will

It’s not hard to make a case against smoking cigarettes. You can start with:

  1. Smoking shortens your lifespan
  2. Smoking causes cancer
  3. Smoking harms the health of those around you
  4. Smoking can lead to birth defects
  5. Smoking causes gum disease
  6. Smoking raises your risk of heart disease

…The list goes on and on.

Yet, just as the list of reasons not to smoke proceeds in abundance, so does the epidemic of smoking. Why?

What’s the root of the disconnect between the facts people know, and the actions they take regardless of receiving all the relevant information? Maybe it’s a matter of perception. Maybe it’s an issue of public policy.

OR, it could be traced back to how we choose to have the “no smoking” conversation. A doctor’s office is one thing. A concerned friend, there’s another. But take these shocking, visceral, issue-driven advertisements, and consider whether the shock-value of this visual approach might stand to do more to change people’s minds about smoking than policing the practice or publicizing the facts could alone.





Advertising Agency: Euro RSCG Australia

Credit: Euro RSCG Australia

Advertising Agency: Dentsu, Beijing, China

Credit: Dentsu, Beijing, China


Credit: JWT, Atlanta, USA