Tobacco advertising is the advertising of tobacco products or use (typically cigarette smoking) by the tobacco industry through a variety of media including sponsorship, particularly of sporting events. It is now one of the most highly regulated forms of marketing. Some or all forms of tobacco advertising are banned in many countries.
The first known advertisement in the USA was for the snuff
and tobacco products of P. Lorillard and Company and was
placed in the New York daily paper in 1789. Advertising was
an emerging concept, and tobacco-related adverts were not
seen as any different from those for other products: their
negative impact on health was unknown at the time. Local and regional newspapers were used because of the small-scale
production and transportation of these goods. The first real brand name to become known on a bigger scale in the USA
was "Bull Durham" which emerged in 1868, with the
advertising placing the emphasis on how easy it was "to roll your own".
The development of color lithography in the late 1870s
allowed the companies to create attractive images to better
present their products. This led to the printing of pictures onto the cigarette cards, previously only used to stiffen the
packaging but now turned into an early marketing concept. By the last quarter of the 19th century, magazines such as
Punch carried advertisements for different brands of
cigarettes, snuff, and pipe tobacco. Advertising was
significantly helped by the distribution of free or subsidized branded cigarettes to troops during World War I and World
Advertisement for "Egyptian Deities" cigarettes, showing
woman holding package of cigarettes, at the start of the 20th century.
Before the 1970s, most tobacco advertising was legal in the United States and most European nations. In the United States, in the 1950s and 1960s, cigarette brands frequently sponsored television shows—most notably To Tell the Truth and I've Got a Secret.
One of the most famous television jingles of the era came from an advertisement for Winston cigarettes. The slogan "Winston tastes good like a cigarette should!" proved to be catchy, and is still quoted today. When used to introduce Gunsmoke (gun = smoke), two gun shots were heard in the middle of the jingle just when listeners were expecting to hear the word "cigarette". Other popular slogans from the 1960s were "Us Tareyton smokers would rather fight than switch!," which was used to advertise Tareyton cigarettes, and "I'd Walk a Mile for a Camel". In 1954, tobacco companies ran the ad "A Frank Statement." The ad was the first in a campaign to dispute reports that smoking cigarettes could cause lung cancer and had other dangerous health effects.
In the 1950s, manufacturers began adding filter tips to cigarettes to remove some of the tar and nicotine as they were smoked. "Safer," "less potent" cigarette brands were also introduced. Light cigarettes became so popular that, as of 2004, half of American smokers preferred them over regular cigarettes,. According to The Federal Government’s National Cancer Institute (NCI), light cigarettes provide no benefit to smokers' health. In 1964, the Surgeon General of the United States released the Surgeon General's Advisory Committee Report on Smoking and Health. It was based on over 7000 scientific articles that linked tobacco use with cancer and other diseases. This report led to laws requiring warning labels on tobacco products and to restrictions on tobacco advertisements. As these began to come into force, tobacco marketing became more subtle, with sweets shaped like cigarettes put on the market, and a number of advertisements designed to appeal to children, particularly those featuring Joe Camel resulting in increased awareness and uptake of smoking among children. However, restrictions did have an effect on...
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