158122 **SESSION ABSTRACT** Getting to know you: How relationship marketing strategies promote tobacco use

Monday, November 5, 2007: 12:30 PM

Pamela Ling, MD, MPH , Division of General Internal Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
M. Jane Lewis, DrPH , School of Public Health, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, New Brunswick, NJ
Daniel K. Cortese, PhD , Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
Stacey J. Anderson, PhD , Division of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, United Kingdom
Olivia Wackowski, MPH , School of Public Health, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, New Brunswick, NJ
As tobacco marketing restrictions increase and smoking prevalence decreases in the United States, the tobacco industry has increasingly emphasized more subtle marketing strategies that include relationship marketing, which aims to build long term relationships with customers. These strategies facilitate two complementary types of relationships: alliances between tobacco companies and their customers, and “peer to peer” relationships between smokers. They often utilize marketing channels more challenging for surveillance, such as direct mail lists, internet websites, or consumer word of mouth. Relationship marketing strategies feature personalized appeals that reflect the psychographic targeting of cigarette brands, and feedback loops that capitalize on consumer research and participation. Smokers are also encouraged to participate in viral marketing: using consumer word of mouth as a marketing channel. These strategies have been facilitated by internet websites, which provide many more opportunities for personalized, interactive, and “smoker to smoker” communications. Public health professionals must recognize these stealth strategies to develop effective plans to monitor and counter them. This session introduces the principles of relationship and viral marketing as applied to tobacco and provides specific examples of the evolution of these strategies in direct mail, interpersonal communications, and website promotions. Presentations will integrate analyses of previously-secret tobacco industry documents describing the importance and objectives of these marketing strategies with analyses of physical and online archives of tobacco marketing materials. The session will include the following presentations: (1) Introduction and Context; (2) Controlled circulation magazines; (3) Viral marketing of Eclipse; (4) Tobacco industry branded websites; (5) Online smoker communities.

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe three basic principles of relationship marketing and their relationship to tobacco promotions 2. Recognize the specific relationship marketing strategies executed in multiple tobacco marketing campaigns 3. Discuss strategies to monitor and counter tobacco relationship marketing tactics

Keywords: Tobacco Control, Tobacco Industry

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No
Any institutionally-contracted trials related to this submission?

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.