16 Cancers anti-smoking campaign

The 16 Cancers campaign is an emotionally intense and graphic style campaign that encourages smokers to quit by highlighting that smoking has been linked to up to 16 different types of cancer. 16 Cancers focuses on the distress of a cancer diagnosis and the devastating impact that cancer caused by smoking can have on the quality of life of a smoker (long before old age) and their family.

The 16 Cancers campaign specifically addresses lung, bowel, stomach and bladder cancer.

16 Cancers was licenced from the Cancer Council WA in 2015, and was successfully adapted for use in NSW for the first broadcast of the campaign in May-June 2016.  Development of 16 Cancers was informed by research which showed that less than a quarter of Western Australians could name more than two types of smoking-related cancer.[i] In NSW, awareness levels are similar to those in WA, with only 27.9% of people being able to name two or more cancers caused by smoking.[ii]

The campaign conveys a compelling message to quit “Smoking causes 16 different types of cancer. You’ve got one clear way to reduce your risk”.

Who produced this campaign?

Cancer Council WA

Media channels

The second broadcast of the campaign runs from October 23 to December 3, 2016 across the following media:

  • TV – Sydney metropolitan and regional (Northern and Southern NSW, Albury, Griffith, Broken Hill)
  • Online TV – video display prior to viewing on-line programs
  • Social Media – Facebook advertising
  • Digital – targeted display advertising

Quit smoking support is available through iCanQuit.com.au and the NSW Quitline (13 7848).


[i] Cancer Council WA, 16 Cancers Pre Campaign Survey, 2015

[ii] Smoking and Health Survey, 2015