The American Legacy Foundation developed the truth campaign, an aspirational antismoking brand for adolescents. This study tested whether a multidimensional scale, brand equity in truth, mediates the relationship between campaign exposure and youth smoking. We collected brand equity responses from 2,306 youth on a nationally representative telephone survey. Factor analysis indicates that the scale has excellent psychometric properties and effectively measures brand equity. We developed a structural equation model to test the mediation hypothesis. Results show that brand equity mediates the relationship between truth and smoking. Analyses of potential cofounders show this relationship is robust. Behavioral branding (brands about a behavior or a lifestyle) is an important public health strategy.
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