Presentation on theme: "The Rise of the Tobacco Industry Tapping Into New Markets 1900-1950."— Presentation transcript:
The Rise of the Tobacco Industry Tapping Into New Markets 1900-1950
How It All Started… In the early 1900’s, less than 1% of American adults regularly smoked cigarettes. By 1950, 50% of American adults were smoking. That is HALF the adult population picking up smoking in only 50 years!
How Did That Happen? How did the industry manage to increase its consumer base so dramatically in such a short period of time?
The Tobacco Industry Tapped Into New Markets Specifically : Soldiers Women
Tobacco Industry and the Military American soldiers first received tobacco rations (0.4 oz. with 10 cigarette papers) in World War I. When the War Department approved the rations, "a wave of joy swept through the American Army."
In World War I, wounded soldiers were allowed to smoke while being operated on. An army surgeon described the calming effect of cigarettes: "Wonderful. As soon as the lads take their first whiff, they seem eased and relieved of their agony."
The use of cigarettes exploded during World War I (1914-1918), where cigarettes were called the "soldier's smoke."
A Generation Addicted Virtually, an entire generation of men returned from WWI addicted to tobacco industry products. Free cigarettes in their rations committed the soldiers to a lifetime of addiction. Tobacco companies sent millions of cigarettes to the soldiers for free, and when these soldiers came home, the companies had a steady stream of loyal customers.
World War II During World War II (1939-1945), cigarette sales were at an all time high Cigarettes were sold at military stores tax-free for usually a nickel a pack, and were distributed free in overseas areas.
Tobacco Industry and Women Prior to the beginning of the 20th century, smoking was not a socially acceptable practice for men or women. Smoking was slowly promoted as a symbol of emancipation and equality for women.
Advertising directed specifically to women was not acceptable until the late 1920s. Prior to that time, social, cultural, and legal pressures limited a woman's ability to smoke and, as a result, few did. In 1923, women consumed only 5% of all cigarettes sold. By 1929, the number had grown to 12%. It jumped to 18% by 1933.
How Did That Happen? Aggressive marketing to women by tobacco companies. The Industry recognized that they could roughly double their consumer-base if women used, and became addicted to, their products.
Public Relations to the Rescue The relationship between tobacco companies and Public Relations firms goes back to the early 20 th Century. The tobacco companies started using PR's psychological marketing skills to first 'hook' women to their drug.
The Pioneer… Edward Bernays Edward Bernays, a leading PR specialist in the 1920s, staged a legendary publicity event that is still taught as an example in PR schools. He hired beautiful fashion models to march in New York's prominent Easter parade, each waving a lit cigarette and wearing a banner proclaiming it a "torch of liberty." Bernays made sure that publicity photos of his smoking models appeared world-wide.
Timely Tactics… The companies appealed to the idea of freedom and liberation at a time when women were fighting for equal rights. Female celebrities were used to endorse cigarette brands, and appeared in movies, smoking, in an effort to normalize and glamorize the use of cigarettes by women
Regrets… To his credit, an older Bernays expressed regret at his work, saying that if he had known of the dangers of tobacco, he would have refused the account.
The Result… During the first half of the 20 th Century, soldiers and women were heavily targeted by tobacco companies. Marketing efforts by the tobacco industry succeeded in addicting HALF the adult population of the U.S. by 1950. Smoking cigarettes became socially acceptable for both men and women.
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