Campaign highlights the one time it is good to be a quitter

Published on November 17, 2016

Quitting tobacco use is difficult. Resolve and resilience can ultimately lead to success but not before multiple quit attempts and relapses have been experienced. The average number of quit attempts by current tobacco users is between seven and eleven. Which is the reason why the new Arizona Department of Health Services adult cessation campaign, Coaches on Coaching, is highlighting the importance of experienced cessation support. It draws comparisons between the skills of the professional counselors from the Arizona Smokers’ Helpline (ASHLine) called quit coaches with those of professional and collegiate sports coaches. Coaching skills are critical when it comes to encouraging people to achieve a goal of living tobacco free.

Created by RIESTER, one of the nation’s leading tobacco prevention marketing firms, the campaign features real coaches who speak directly to tobacco users, offering words of advice and assurance that quitting tobacco is possible. In the campaign, both the quit coaches and the sports coaches agree that this is “the one time when they love a good quitter.” And more than just a creative parallel, subject matter experts point out that the chances of quitting tobacco use for good can be doubled with the help of a quit coach.

Coaches on Coaching will reach across the state on television, radio, out of home, print, digital and via sports partnerships. The alignment with the sports coaches evokes a one-of-a-kind tone of support, with many professional and collegiate sports franchises in Arizona stepping up to help the community. The list of professional sports coaches volunteering their voices for this effort include legendary University of Arizona basketball coach Lute Olson; former MLB baseball player and Arizona Diamondback’s Chief Baseball Officer Tony La Russa; Phoenix Suns head coach Earl Watson; Phoenix Mercury head coach Sandy Brondello; Arizona State University football head coach Todd Graham; Arizona Coyotes head coach Dave Tippet; and Arizona United head coach Frank Yallop.

 

As an innovator and longtime partner in anti-tobacco marketing and communication in Arizona, RIESTER has been a diligent observer and researcher on the topic. Coaches on Coaching capitalizes on shared traits and is anticipated to resonate with the public. The campaign will increase awareness about the Arizona Smokers’ Helpline and deliver a realization that professional counselors can hugely increase the chances of quitting tobacco use for good.

This campaign was introduced alongside a grassroots initiative led by Arizona’s tobacco control advocates under the name Quit2Win, who today on Great American Smokeout assembled to voice their support for all Arizonans who make a quit attempt. The groups organized under the hashtag #Quit2Win and deployed a variety of community efforts.

And while Arizona’s smoking rates are at 14 percent, the lowest they have ever been, the statistics show that tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death in the U.S. There is still a lot of work to be done. Visit www.ashline.org to obtain information and resources.

Arizona Department of Health Services debuts new public awareness campaign, Coaches on Coaching, encouraging smokers who want to quit to call the Arizona Smokers' Helpline. In photo from left to right: Chris Minnick, Laurie Thomas, Wayne Tormala, Mirja Riester and Tom Ortega

Arizona Department of Health Services debuts new public awareness campaign, Coaches on Coaching, encouraging smokers who want to quit to call the Arizona Smokers’ Helpline. In photo from left to right: Chris Minnick, Laurie Thomas, Wayne Tormala, Mirja Riester and Tom Ortega