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Issue Addressed: Adolescents are heavily exposed to unhealthy outdoor food advertisements near schools, however, the marketing power of these advertisements among adolescents has not yet been explored. This study aimed to investigate the teen-directed marketing features present and quantify the overall marketing power of outdoor food advertisements located near schools to explore any differences by content (ie, alcohol, discretionary, core and miscellaneous foods) school type (ie, primary, secondary, K-12) and area-level socio-economic status (SES; ie, low vs high). Methods: This cross-sectional study audited every outdoor food advertisement (n = 1518) within 500m of 64 randomly selected schools in Perth, Western Australia, using a teen-informed coding tool to score the marketing power of each advertisement. Results: Outdoor alcohol advertisements around schools had the highest average marketing power score and number of advertising features present. Outdoor advertisements for alcohol and discretionary foods scored significantly higher in marketing power than core food advertisements (P <.001). Outdoor alcohol advertisements around secondary schools scored significantly higher in marketing power than around primary and K-12 schools (P <.001); and outdoor advertisements for discretionary foods in low SES areas scored significantly higher in marketing power than those in high SES areas (P <.001). Conclusions: This study found outdoor advertisements for unhealthy products, such as alcohol and discretionary foods, were more powerful than advertisements for core foods around schools. So What?: These findings strengthen the need for policies which restrict outdoor advertisements for non-core foods near schools, to reduce adolescents' exposure to powerful alcohol and discretionary food advertisements.
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