Above the Influence


Drug abuse is harmful at any age, but reducing adolescent drug use is crucial. Early drug use has been shown to lead to a high likelihood users will consume progressively more dangerous substances and risk addiction and negative consequences.

“Above the Influence” (ATI) was a large national social marketing campaign sponsored by the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), aimed to reduce and prevent teen drug use (primarily alcohol and marijuana). The messaging focused on persuading teens that substance use is part of the larger world of negative influences that affect them.

Unprecedented in size and scope, the campaign was the most visible symbol of the federal government’s commitment to youth drug prevention.


ONDCP launched the Above the Influence campaign as a part of the National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign. Platforms included TV, web, print, and out-of-home media intended to reach youth ages 12-17 with a particular emphasis on youth ages 14-16.

KDHRC worked with ONDCP and other partner agencies to develop content that resonates with teens. KDHRC’s role was to perform tasks related to Media Campaign Advisory Team (MCAT) coordination, strategic input, and research oversight for the National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign.

Additionally, KDHRC was involved with the Institutional Review Board process for the campaign.


Exposure to ATI advertising created a significant change in overall beliefs against marijuana use among teens. The campaign’s strength was evident in driving positive outcome expectations and social normative perceptions.

Additional findings about the campaign’s effectiveness are available in the following resources:



To learn more about “Above the Influence” Campaign click here.


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