Brand does matter. It matters both in brands of cigarettes as well as brands of e-cigarettes.
A study of women smokers from Scotland found that the women who smoked cigarettes from plain brown cigarette packs felt more negative about smoking even though they were smoking their regular brands.
They reportedly smoked fewer cigarettes, smoked less around others, stubbed out their cigarettes earlier and talked more about quitting when using the plain packs.
It appears that women are concerned with their image when it comes to choosing brands such as cigarettes. It’s a great insight – because it can be used to help drive down sales of cigarettes. It could also be used to help drive UP sales of e-cigarettes.
Young Women – A Target for Big Tobacco
Young women have long been a key target group for big tobacco companies, which created brands such as Virginia Slims, the Capri cigarette and Camel No. 9. Even Marlboro was originally targeted to women with the slogan “Mild as May” until it was repositioned to men in the 1950’s.
|Tobacco companies were masters of advertising, promoting their brands to women using words like "slim" and "mild."|
Unfortunately, they’ve been successful. While smoking rates overall have fallen to somewhere around 20 to 22 percent, they haven’t fallen enough, considering the fact that everyone knows smoking can cause lung cancer and may eventually be a death sentence.
Young women continue to pick up smoking. Many who start out as “social smokers” (smoking when drinking) end up getting hooked.
Big Tobacco and E-Cigarettes
Clearly, Big Tobacco has decided they'd rather switch than fight.
Most of the biggest tobacco companies – Altria Group (owner of Phillip Morris), Reynolds American (owner of R.J. Reynolds) and Lorillard – are hitching their wagon to the new e-cigarettes.
Altria Group Inc. announced its plans to introduce an electronic cigarette in late 2013. It's the last of the major domestic tobacco companies to enter this growing category.
Reynolds American Inc., maker of Camel cigarettes, has begun limited distribution of its first electronic cigarette under the Vuse brand.
Lorillard Inc., the nation's third-biggest tobacco company, acquired e-cigarette maker blu eCigs in April 2012. You may have seen the blu eCig "Rise from the Ashes" advertisements, featuring Stephen Dorff at the beach talking about why he’s just as cool using his blu eCigs.
Even if you don't love these ads (personally, I'm not a fan), it's clear the same companies that are terrifically successful at branding and marketing cigarettes will be just as effective in marketing e-cigarettes.
Brand Matters. Why? Because It's About People and Profits.
Brand does matter. Why? Because a brand represents a company. And a company is made up of people – people who run the company. People who make decisions about how they will price, package and promote their products. People who will ultimately decide where the profits from that company will go.
|Lorillard, the third largest tobacco company in the U.S. is set to make more money every year. blu eCigs, their e-cigarette company, is contributing toward this growth.|
E-cigarettes are also driving down industry cigarette volumes. But companies like Lorillard, which shipped 40.2 billion cigarettes to men and women in the U.S. and reported net sales of $6.6 billion and a net income of $1.1 billion last year, shouldn't be too worried.
They're still set to make more money every year (see the above chart). In fact, blu eCigs will simply contribute to their bottom line and enable them to continue promoting Newport, Kent, Old Gold and their other brands of cigarettes.
The Best E-Cigarette Brands? You Choose.
Of course, we here at Vaping Vamps know that everyone has a choice about which company to purchase your e-cigarettes from.
You could choose a company like blu eCigs, where your sale will contribute to big profits for big tobacco.
Or you could choose a company like Vaping Vamps where the income from your sale will be put toward developing and offering the best e-cigarette starter kits, e-cigarette cases and accessories at the best prices we can. And where we pledge to donate 5 percent of all of our profits to organizations that contribute to women’s health.