Communication Brief: Cancer Council Australia
Cancer Council Australia is the federal body mandated to prevent and control cancer in Australia (Cancer Council Australia, 2016). One of our major duties is prevention of cancer. In so doing, we help Australians to eat healthier foods, protect themselves from ultra violet rays, stop smoking and have a physical activity regime. Although Cancer Council has been engaging in various activities to reduce the burden of cancer – offering information, research, treatment and prevention – cancers attributed to obesity still pose a local, regional and national health and economic challenge.
One is considered obese if their body mass index (BMI) is 30 and above. Majorly, obesity is caused by unhealthy eating and lack of physical activity. Obesity is a risk factor for many kinds of cancers including; pancreatic, liver, kidney, bowel, stomach, breast, ovary and prostate cancer. Kendall et al (2015) estimates that 3917 cancer cases among Australian adults in 2010 were caused by being overweight and obesity. According to Cancer Council Australia (2016) lack of physical activity in adults contribute to about 14 percent of colon cancers and 11 percent post-menopausal breast cancers. Apart from cancer, unhealthy eating and physical inactivity increases the risk factor for type II diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.
Two in every three Australian adults, especially among disadvantaged groups, are currently overweight or obese (Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), 2008). According to Parr et al (2010), there is a 23 percent likelihood of obese Australians to die from cancer compared to people in the healthy weight bracket. It is estimated that by 2025, about 6.9 million Australian adults will be obese if effective interventions are not put in place (Cancer Council Australia, 2016). Physical inactivity, apart from being an independent risk factor for cancer, contributes to the rapidly increasing rate of obesity cases in Australia. According to the National Preventive Health Taskforce (2009) physical inactivity is contributed by people living in built environment and adapting to sedentary lifestyles.
Cancer Council advocates for a healthy body weight through healthy eating and regular physical activity. World Cancer Research Fund and American Institute for Cancer Research (2007) assert that appropriate physical activity, food and nutrition could prevent a quarter of all cancers. Physical activity, especially in adults decreases the risk of different types of cancers, reduces stress, helps in maintaining bone mineral density, and improves cardiovascular fitness.
This campaign is aimed at reducing Australia’s cancer burden. The purpose of this project is to increase public awareness of cancer related risks of obesity and lack of physical activity, and to encourage adults to increase their physical activity levels. This message will be geared towards changing people’s preferences for transport to include public transport, cycling and walking. Additionally to encourage people to engage in more physical activity to improve their health status. Again, to persuade Australians to Increase their intake of healthy foods (fruits, vegetables and cereals) and decrease intake of junk foods. The message calls on the members of the public to act against obesity before it reaches unsolvable levels.
For all Australians in Western Australia, concerned about the beast of obesity and how to slay it, Cancer Council Australia through its cancer prevention mandate, provides information, support and practical steps to eat healthy, engage in easy-to-do physical activities, to prevent and manage obesity and obesity-related cancers. Cancer Council walks alongside the people of Australia as we embrace healthier lifestyles through diet and physical activity to overcome obesity-related cancers.
Target Market and Audience
This message is directed to adults between the ages of 25 and 60, living in Western Australia. Mostly it should reach overweight and obese men and women within this age bracket. These are men and women with low social economic status and have below average incomes. They could be English speakers or non-English speaking individuals. The target audience should have a television set and be able to read since the advertising messages will be transmitted through television and print media.
Objectives and Strategy
This media campaign will seek to achieve the following objectives;
To create and increase awareness of the benefits of regular physical activity among middle aged adults of between 25 and 60 years.
To create and increase awareness of the type, duration and frequency of physical activity that is needed to maintain good health.
Demonstrate how to combine healthy eating and physical activity to maintain healthy weight and prevent obesity.
Show how moderate physical activity can be integrated in everyday activities
Create and increase awareness of the benefits that come from maintaining a healthy weight visa Vis the effects of unhealthy weight, in relation to cancer.
Uphold motivation for physical activity through family or group outdoor recreational activities.
Create and increase the awareness of 30-minutes-per-day physical activity through appealing to the emotions of the target audience
The strategy will involve a side by side comparison between the benefits of eating healthy and engaging in physical activities compared to the disadvantages of unhealthy eating and physical inactivity, in relation to cancer. Additionally, demonstration of easy to follow solutions of defeating obesity. Two television adverts, 5 print media (newspaper) adverts and information packs for public health providers will be used to communicate the message. The media campaign will run hand in hand with the health support community-based campaigns by primary health care providers who will create community awareness and provide information.
The campaign will use the Cancer Council Logo. Colours should reflect on healthy eating and physical activity. The tone of the messages should be careful not to sound condemning but firm enough to call for action. Images and visuals used should paint reality but in a sensitive way. Typography for print adverts should be legible and appealing. The messages should follow the Cancer Council brand guidelines.
The message should be tailor-made to impact on households such that the parents’ decisions impact on the children and the entire household and could be passed to the next generation. It should evoke emotions like fear of unhealthy eating causing cancer, motivation in carrying easy-to-do moderate physical activities and the determination to remain healthy through nutrition and physical activity. It should show incidental portrayal of physical activity and how people can integrate them in their everyday activities. It should portray the ‘yuck’ factor for sedentary lifestyle and provide the solution, which is, embracing physical activity. The message should be strong enough to provoke shock and repulsion in the target audience in order to persuade them to change their habits. It is important to tailor the message in such a way that it does not end up provoking self-disgust and low self-esteem. However, it should be strong enough to make the audience want to, and actually take action (Grunseit et al, 2016).
Cancer Council Australia will seek to partner with other government and public health agencies in the campaign. Additionally, the media adverts will run simultaneously with public health community based awareness creation campaign aimed at spreading the message within communities and in health centres. This will improve the message reach to the target audience. It will also be used for monitoring purposes. Further, the Cancer Council will update important information regarding obesity, its relation to cancer and how to overcome it, during the duration of the campaign.
The desired media for this campaign is television and print media ads. Two television adverts, 5 print media (newspaper) adverts and information packs for public health providers will be used. Advertising will occur in continuity over an 8-week period.
The campaign timing involves 8 weeks media flight duration. Two 30-minutes television commercials for 8 weeks, playing on prime times. Five newspaper adverts will be carried within the 8 week duration. Newspaper adverts in the rural print media which will include multilingual element for minority communities.
Budget is estimated between $500,000 and $700,000 for the entire campaign.
Agency will receive the communication brief one week prior to the actual campaign briefing. Contribution and approval process will then follow. Testing will then be carried out to determine the feasibility of the project and its success. This will involve liaison with health care representatives for the support activities. The messages should not replicate any other campaign that has been there. Support activities include; local community based events and activities which involve walks, health practitioners’ promotions, and community based awareness creation by public health care givers. Provision of print resources for men and women among the minority groups. Some of the print resources should be in different languages for the non-English speaking minority groups. Additionally, development of a campaign website content that is congruent with the campaign message to provide further information.
Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2008). National Health Survey 2007-08: summary of results. Retrieved 7, September, 2016 from http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/[email protected]/mf/4364.0
Cancer Council Australia. (2016). Obesity control in Australia: defusing a cancer time bomb — Cancer Council Australia. Cancer.org.au. Retrieved 9 September 2016, from http://www.cancer.org.au/policy-and-advocacy/election-priorities-2010/obesity-control-in-australia-defusing-a-cancer-time-bomb.html
Grunseit, A., Bellew, B., Goldbaum, E., Gale, J. & Bauman, A. (2016). Mass media campaigns addressing physical activity, nutrition and obesity in Australia: an updated narrative review. The Australian Prevention Centre: Sydney.
Kendall, J. K., Wilson, L. F., Olsen, C. M., Webb, P. M., Neale, R. E., Bain, C. J. & Whiteman, D. C. (2015). Cancers in Australia in 2010 attributable to overweight and obesity. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 39(5), 452-457.
National Preventative Health Taskforce (2009). Australia: the healthiest country by 2020. National Preventative Health Strategy – the roadmap for action. Commonwealth of Australia.
Parr, C. L., Batty, G. D., Lam, T. H., Barzi, F., Fang, X., et al. (2010). Body-mass index and cancer mortality in the Asia-Pacific Cohort Studies Collaboration: pooled analyses of 424 519 participants. Lancet
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World Cancer Research Fund, American Institute for Cancer Research. (2007). Food, nutrition, physical activity, and the prevention of cancer: a global perspective. Washington DC: AICR.