USA Today, Life Section, October 9
Who is your client, and what are its media goals?
Kimberley Collins: The American Legacy Foundation (ALF) is a national public health foundation created out of the master tobacco settlement agreement. It focuses on both helping smokers quit and preventing youth from starting. The group was looking to educate the public, especially parents, on how images of smoking in the movies increases the likelihood of children taking up the habit.
What made USA Today such a good hit for the ALF, and how did you pitch the editors there?
Collins: USA Today reaches such a wide audience that the foundation felt a graphic for their Snapshots section would be a perfect fit. We had worked with the paper's Life section/ Snapshot editors on past campaigns, so when we highlighted new research demonstrating the strong link between smoking in the movies and youth starting to smoke, they found the pitch really attractive.
The danger associated with smoking gets a lot of coverage. Was it a challenge coming up with a fresh angle?
Collins: The new research was the key, especially showing how much smoking there actually still is in the movies kids are seeing. USA Today also liked that this could easily be communicated in a graphic format.
Were there any interviews done for the story? What kind of art or support materials did you provide?
Collins: Reporters at USA Today interviewed researchers familiar with the new data and we were also able to break down the information we had into numbers they could then run as a graphic. The other key
was persistence. After we got them the information, we followed up every few weeks until it ran.
What was the impact of the hit?
Collins: The graphic ran on the front page of the Life section on October 9. The foundation had charged us with placing this exact, visually impactful hit in order to better position them as a resource for health information, so they were really pleased.
Name: Kimberley Collins, account supervisor, GolinHarris (Washington, DC)
Placement: USA Today, Life Section, October 9
Pitch Timeline: Three months