Tobacco companies have long been known for their aggressive marketing tactics, particularly when it comes to targeting children and adolescents. From advertising campaigns to product placement and cartoon characters, big tobacco companies have invested heavily in getting young people to start smoking. This overlooks the fact that tobacco is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. The only way the tobacco industry can make up for the adults who die from smoking-related illnesses is to get children to start smoking. Research shows that nearly 100 children and teens who had previously smoked cigarettes on an occasional basis become regular cigarette smokers on a daily basis.
It's clear that tobacco companies' advertising and promotion have a significant influence on young people's decision to start using tobacco. In advertisements, tobacco use is often associated with healthy outdoor activities, giving the impression that it is not only safe, but also the choice of healthy and vigorous people. A 1967 study revealed gender-specific relationships with tobacco advertising campaigns aimed at women. The Committee trusts that state and federal legislation implementing these recommendations will help to reduce tobacco consumption by children and young people, and that such legislation will be able to withstand any constitutional challenges presented by the affected media or by the tobacco industry. By targeting young people as their 'substitute smokers', tobacco companies are engaging in cruel and aggressive marketing tactics, knowing full well that they are killing their current customers. To this end, states and localities should severely restrict the advertising and promotion of tobacco products on billboards and other outdoor media, in vehicles, in public transportation facilities, in public stadiums and sports facilities, and at retail outlets.
The tobacco industry has always been sensitive to social and cultural differences, striving to position their products through market segmentation. The communication and tobacco industries have a legitimate interest in avoiding diverse and often incompatible state-by-state regulation of advertising and promotional activities that take place in the national media. In 1970, advertisements accounted for 82% * of total spending on tobacco marketing. This figure dropped to 67% in 1980, 21% in 1990 and 17% in 1991. Tobacco companies sponsor a variety of events such as opera and ballet performances, rock concerts, rap shows, country music festivals, blues festivals, jazz concerts, classical music concerts, making their products highly visible to diverse populations while reinforcing the association between cigarettes, artistic expression, entertainment, glamor and individuality. The methodology of this study was rigorous and examined adult tobacco use while taking into account factors such as income levels, the price of tobacco products and health education. The success of the Old Joe Camel campaign in 1987 reignited a debate about the role of advertising in encouraging young people to use tobacco products.
Econometric studies provide information on general advertising trends but are too vague to draw firm conclusions about the impact of advertising on specific populations over time. From 1981 to 1992 (during which time the tobacco industry more than doubled its advertising and promotion spending), smoking among high school seniors fell by only 3%, or 0.26 percentage points per year. Tobacco advertisements and promotions are prominently displayed in convenience stores, gas stations and other retail outlets frequented by young people - including some retailers with pharmacies.