Effectiveness of cigarette warning labels: examining the impact of graphics, message framing, and temporal framing

Xiaoli Nan, Xiaoquan Zhao, Bo Yang, Irina Iles
Health Communication 2015, 30 (1): 81-9
This study examines the effectiveness of cigarette warning labels, with a specific focus on the impact of graphics, message framing (gain vs. loss), and temporal framing (present-oriented vs. future-oriented) among nonsmokers in the United States. A controlled experiment (N = 253) revealed that graphic warning labels were perceived as more effective, stronger in argument strength, and were generally liked more compared to text-only labels. In addition, loss-framed labels, compared to their gain-framed counterparts, were rated higher in perceived effectiveness, argument strength, and liking. No significant difference was observed between the present- and future-oriented frames on any of the dependent variables. Implications of the findings for antismoking communication efforts are discussed.

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