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Social Marketing for Behavior Change

"USI SMILE: A Social Marketing Campaign Aimed at Improving the Oral Hygiene of University Students in Ticino, Switzerland"



Reka Anna Lassu- University of Lugano

Giovanni Dragonetti- University of Lugano

Estell Pochon- University of Lugano

Marco Bardus- University of Lugano

L. Suzanne Suggs- University of Lugano


Oral health is linked to quality of life and has implications on overall health. A proper daily oral hygiene regiment is important, yet few are aware that in addition to brushing and flossing, tongue cleaning is imperative. Bacteria on the tongue can contribute to health problems and to halitosis. Students are highly cognizant of bad breath and its social implications, however, in general, they do not clean their tongues daily. 


The goal of the “USI SMILE” campaign was to raise awareness of tongue cleaning and promote good oral hygiene among university students in Ticino, Switzerland. The campaign was positioned around the social issue of avoiding bad breath. 


This research was presented at the following conference:

European Social Marketing Association 1st Conference.


26-28 November 2012


Lisbon, Portugal

Learn more about this research

Food for Thought:


Inspiring Behavior Change with Message Design

This brilliant social marketing campaign, "Save the Crabs then Eat 'Em" inspired the research project.

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