Guide To Marketing Tobacco Products In A Restricted Space

A Guide to marketing tobacco products is necessary as there are many dos and don’ts when it comes to marketing tobacco. It can be a little difficult to nail how to effectively advertise tobacco products. This both from a legal standpoint and reaching consumers. This article breaks down the history of tobacco restrictions and the current legislation. Moreover are regulations you need to be aware of in 2023, as well as how to advertise tobacco products. 

Let’s get started!

The History of Tobacco Marketing Restrictions

Tobacco restrictions and legislation have a long history that spans several centuries. 

In the 1970s, the U.S. Congress passed several laws to regulate tobacco. This includes the Public Health Cigarette Smoking Act. The Act aims to ban cigarette advertising on television and radio.

In the 1990s, the U.S. government stepped up its efforts to curb smoking. This is through the passage of the Comprehensive Smokeless Tobacco Health Education Act. Moreover is the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act.

In recent years, many countries and states around the world have implemented a variety of tobacco control policies. Examples are increasing taxes on cigarettes, banning smoking in public places, and restricting the advertising and promotion of tobacco products.

In 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) has been pushing and encouraging countries to implement plain packaging to help reduce smoking and smoking-related illnesses.

As you can see, restrictions are always changing and evolving to keep up to date with the latest research and government initiatives.

What Restrictions Are on Tobacco Marketing?

The current restrictions on U.S. tobacco marketing are primarily set by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Also the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) set it. Here are some of the main restrictions:

  • Advertising: The FTC regulates the advertising of tobacco products. It prohibits the advertising of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco on television and radio, which has been banned since 1971. Additionally, tobacco companies are prohibited from targeting youth with their advertising, and all cigarette and smokeless tobacco advertisements must include a health warning.
  • Flavored cigarettes: The FDA has banned the sale of flavored cigarettes (excluding menthol), which are believed to be particularly appealing to youth.
  • Packaging and labeling: The FDA regulates the packaging and labeling of tobacco products, and requires that all cigarette packages and advertisements include a health warning.
  • Sales to minors: Federal law prohibits the sale of tobacco products to anyone under the age of 18, and many states have raised the minimum age to purchase tobacco products to 21.
  • Internet and Direct mail sales: Federal law prohibits the distribution of free samples of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco and restricts the sale of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco over the internet and through direct mail.

It’s worth noting that despite these restrictions, tobacco companies still spend billions of dollars on advertising and promotion each year, and continue to face criticism for their marketing practices.

How to Advertise Tobacco Products

When it comes to marketing tobacco products, the first step is figuring out who your target audience is: Are you trying to reach current smokers or people who may be interested in trying smoking? It’s important to remember that it’s illegal to market tobacco products to minors and some laws restrict certain marketing channels.

Once you’ve identified your target market, you can start thinking about how to reach them. There are a few popular channels you can use, like in-store promotions, print and online advertising, and social media marketing. Just keep in mind that some channels like TV and radio may not be available for tobacco products.

When creating your marketing message, it’s important to make it compelling and consistent across all channels. Tailor it to your target market and make sure to include any legally required health warnings.

As you start to market your tobacco products, make sure to keep track of how well your efforts are working. Keep an eye on sales figures, website traffic, and social media engagement. If something isn’t working, make changes and try again.

Finally, your website should appeal to cigar aficionados. Make sure you have a professional-looking website that provides information about your products or services, contact information, and other relevant details. You should also consider setting up social media accounts and utilizing online directories and review sites to make it easier for customers to find and learn about your business.

Informational websites do as they sound – they give you information. They don’t sell anything. Their entire purpose is to educate and inform your customers before they come into your shop.

If your top priority is getting more people in your brick-and-mortar shop, then an informational website is all you need. If you also want to sell cigars, humidors, and accessories through your website then you’ll want an eCommerce website.

Overcome Tobacco Marketing Restrictions with Cigarketing

Cigarketing is the marketing agency a cigar shop and eCommerce site can rely on to get more people in their shop, buy from their website, and take off their plate the burdens of social media, website curation, and more. The cigar industry deserves an agency tailored for cigar business owners, fueled by a team that loves both marketing and cigars. 

You didn’t open your cigar shop or launch your cigar brand so you could worry about Google maps, search engines, event promotion, or web design. You created your business to serve your customers who love cigars. Cigarketing exists to ensure your shop stays full, the cigars move off your shelves (digital or physical), and you dominate your local market.

We’re ready to make you the best cigar shop in your city and on the web. Are you?

See what Cigarketing can do for you!


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