Short-term effects of an anti-marijuana media campaign targeting high sensation seeking adolescents

Michael T. Stephenson, Philip Palmgreen, Rick H. Hoyle, Lewis Donohew, Elizabeth Pugzles Lorch, Susan E. Colon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Sensation seeking, a biologically-based personality variable, is strongly related to both drug use and preferences for highly novel, arousing, and/or unconventional messages and TV programs. This connection is the basis of a targeting strategy in an anti-marijuana public service announcement campaign in a medium-sized market aimed at high sensation seeking adolescents. Data from the first half of the media campaign suggest that the anti-marijuana PSAs are reaching the target audience's marijuana-related beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors in the experimental city when compared to the control city. Implications for future campaigns are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-195
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Applied Communication Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1999

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Mike Stephenson is an assistant professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Missouri. Philip Palmgreen andLewis Donohew areprofessors intheDepartment ofCommunication at the University of Kentucky where Elizabeth Pugzles Lorch and Rick Hoyle are professors in the Department of Psychology. Susan E. Colon is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Illinois-Chicago. This research is supported byGrant DA06892-08 from theNational Institute onDrug Abuse. Direct correspondence to thefirst author at theDepartment of Communication, University of Missouri, 115 Switzler Hall, Columbia, MO65211.

Copyright 2017 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Language and Linguistics


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