JUUL Labs is taking its vaping fight to the airwaves.
Pummeled with constant criticism from health agencies, school administrations and parents for attracting minors to its nicotine-based products, the San Francisco-based e-cigarette Goliath is starting to swing back.
JUUL remains poised to launch a television advertising campaign this summer aimed at adult smokers. Part of the company’s initial message will be how its products promote a path for smokers to follow to quit traditional cigarettes. It also plans to defend the industry’s position that fruity flavors are not targeted to teenagers and pre-teens, according to cnbc.com.
The on-air ads reportedly will feature adults providing testimony on JUUL helping them “kick the habit.” Possessing about 70 percent of the U.S. market, JUUL recently sold a 35-percent stake to Altria. After netting $13 billion in the deal, JUUL is set to invest approximately $10 million for three separate 60-second TV spots, which will air post-prime time on national cable channels, cnbc.com reported.
The three ads, which are slated to air after 10 p.m. local time, will attempt to reach their target market, smokers who are 35 years old and older. All three ads will highlight ex-smokers discussing dark experiences associated with smoking, from isolation from family and friends to failed relationships, and how JUUL products helped them – finally – quit, according to cnbc.com.
If JUUL is eventually able to air the commercials, they could be a big brand boost but could draw the ire of Big Tobacco. Major tobacco companies have mostly been denied TV ads and print space over the past five decades. The vaping industry has yet to fall under similar federal and state regulations.
“It’s clear that we’re focused on the mission of the company to convert people off combustible cigarettes,” JUUL Vice President of Marketing Ann Hoey said. “This is a campaign that is a sort of an honest, straight down the middle of the fairway, very clear communication about what we’re trying to do as a company.”
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