Roper Starch Worldwide's Roper polling division asked a random sample of 1,117 young people ages 10 to 17 about advertising in November. The study, released by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., found that even those who recognized the company's Camel cigarettes symbol gave no indication that recognition had any positive effect on their attitudes toward smoking.
According to the national in-home survey, which has a possible error of plus or minus 4 percentage points:
While 73% recognized the Joe character, Joe was actually among the least recognized of nine major ad vertising sym bols among the youths. Among more recognized symbols: The Energizer bunny and Ronald Mc Donald (99% each) and Kellogg's Frosted Flakes' Tony the Tiger (96%).
Only 81% of those young people who identified Joe as an advertising symbol knew he was a symbol for Camel cigarettes.
Only 3% of the youths who recognized Joe said they had a positive attitude toward smoking and those respondents were all 16- to 17-year-olds.
Far more teens who were aware of cigarette advertising remembered Philip Morris USA's Marlboro advertising than remembered Joe Camel (47% to 26%)
"The upshot is that the Joe Camel character is memorable with kids, but not as memorable as other trade characters," said Harry O'Neill, Roper's vice chairman. "In spite of Joe being well known, he is not foremost and ... since only 3% [of those who have seen him] have anything to say that is positive about cigarettes, it suggests he is not creating a positive image among kids."