Tweet2Quit uses automated daily tweets and feedback with content aligned with current guidelines for tobacco smoking cessation to promote smoking cessation and encourage community engagement.
Tweet2Quit is a fully automated intervention that encourages engagement among a private group of smokers who wish to quit. Interested smokers are invited to join the private group on Twitter, encouraged to set a quit date within their first week in the group, and receive nicotine patches. Daily automated Tweets encourage discussion of evidence-based treatment and community building. Tweets offer emotional support and promote sharing smoking history, identification of rewards for quitting, identification of triggers and obstacles to quitting, sharing of strategies to overcome obstacles to quitting, and discussion of confidence in participants ability to quit.
Assessment and motivational feedback
Young Adults (18-30)
Development of a Twitter-based intervention for smoking that encourages high-quality social media interactions via automessages.
Summary: Researchers used targeted internet advertising to recruit two groups of 20 participants to use Tweet2Quit for 100 days. Results from the first group were used to refine the study and intervention for Group 2. Eligible participants were daily smokers planning to quit. Participants were ineligible if they were unable to use nicotine patches, taking medication for mental illness or smoking cessation, using illicit drugs, or living with another participant. At baseline, participants were assessed on their smoking history and nicotine dependence. Participants completed seven, 30, and 60 day follow up assessments of their abstinence and nicotine patch adherence. Researchers also assessed participants’ tweeting behavior. Participants in both groups posted 72 tweets to the group on average and 78% of participants posted at least once. Of 2867 tweets, 22.78% of the tweets were in response to the automated tweets and 77.22% were spontaneous. Group 2 tweeted more to the automated tweets and had significantly higher nicotine patch adherence than Group 1. Abstinence was related to posting tweets that made assertions of abstinence, discussed quit date and use of nicotine patches, identified ways to overcome obstacles, and expressed confidence about quitting.
Take Away: Engagement with Tweet2Quit was high and shows preliminary evidence that the tweets encouraged by the automated tweets were related to abstinence.
Summary: This randomized control trial compared Tweet2Quit to nicotine patches and a cessation informational website alone. Researchers used online ads to recruit 160 daily smokers planning to quit. Participants were ineligible if they were unable to use nicotine patches, taking medication for mental illness or smoking cessation, used illicit drugs in the last four months or used marijuana daily, or lived with another participant. Participants were grouped into cohorts of 40 people. Participants in each cohort were randomized to participate in a 20-person Tweet2Quit group that also received nicotine patches and information about a cessation website or to a control group that received only nicotine patches and information about a smoking cessation website. Participants completed baseline assessments of smoking history and behavior and nicotine dependence. At seven, 30, and 60 days after their quit date participants completed assessments of abstinence, use of nicotine patches, visits to the smoking cessation website, usage of Tweet2Quit (intervention group). Participants in the Tweet2Quit group sent an average of 58.8 tweets for an average of 47.4 days. Sustained abstinence for 60 days was higher in the Tweet2Quit group than in the control group. Number of tweets made in the Tweet2Group was related to sustained abstinence and a longer duration between first tweet posted in the group and the last tweet posted.
Take Away: Tweet2Quit shows evidence of being an effective means of helping smokers achieve sustained abstinence.