• DAY 2 Perry – Bermondsey to Florence

    Listening to – Oasis – Wonderwall

    Emotion – confused

    I’m rudely woken by my alarm. It’s 3.30am already. No time for a cigarette, it just feels wrong to light up at this ungodly hour. I brush my teeth again but I can still taste the foul remnants of last night’s cigarettes.

    I put the kettle on and take it off again. It’s not suitable attire to travel in, don’t you know!

    I have a cup of tea, finish packing and jump in a cab at 4.15am. I head through empty City streets toward Liverpool Street Station. I can’t smoke in the taxi and I can’t smoke in the station. I meet my interpreter and board a train to Stanstead Airport.  I can’t smoke on the train. We arrive at the airport, meet up with our presenter and almost immediately board the flight to Italy. Now I’m getting worried. When will I get the time and opportunity to have a cigarette or ten?

    We arrive in Bologne some two and a half hours later and pick up the hire car. My two colleagues request I don’t smoke when they are in the car. I, of course oblige, I would make the same request if I was in their seats.

    We decide to take the non motorway route from Bologne to Florence toward the Moto GP or rather our satellite navigation system sends us down some back streets. We eventually get out of the city and into the countryside. The road twists and turns up and down some of the most amazing countryside anywhere in Europe. We admire epic vistas and sleepy villages rarely getting out of second gear such as the roads will allow. I breathe in, filling my lungs with fresh mountain air but all the time I’m thinking I’ve got to have a cigarette soon. It seems like the countryside is taunting me with its pure fresh air. I drive on and Tuscanny is also in on the conspiracy.

    Four hours later I arrive at my hotel. I grab a bite to eat and promptly fall asleep.

    My telephone rings and rudely awakens me from my slumber. It’s 8pm and I still haven’t had a cigarette today. My room is a non-smoking room so after polishing off the remains of room service I head to the bar only to find it’s non-smoking too. So here I am, desperately wanting a cigarette to continue the Smoke Swap. I’ve had a very feeble start to this experiment but it’s not for trying. Whatever way I look at it, this is going to be hard. As I write this I notice it’s 10.10pm and I haven’t had the opportunity to smoke. How do people with a ten or twenty a day habit find time for it. I’ll be f**ked if I know. I guess you have to make time for smoking, plan your day around smoking. So instead of the illusion of freedom associated with smoking, you end up a slave to the cigarette. I guess I’ll have to head outside and spark up before the crew arrive for a night-cap.

    moto gp marlboro cigarette pack

    I light up a B&H. I feel like a bit of a leper or pariah outside on my own. Hotel guests throw a cautionary glance in my direction. No I’m not going to nick your car. I am having a fag!

    I head back in to the hotel lobby and take in with me a powerful headache, I feel lethargic and all I want to do is sleep. The taste in my mouth is unsavoury to say the least. I don’t know how I’m going to get threw this. I love life but right now it sucks big time.

    Vietato Fumeur – No Smoking!

    SMOKES TODAY – 3 out of 10

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  • The major tobacco industry players are…

    Philip Morris Ltd. Owned by Altria Inc.

    Brands include – Marlboro, Raffles, Basic and Philip Morris.

    1) The company manufactures, markets sells/distributes in more than 160 countries.

    2) Produces 7 of the top 20 best selling global cigarette brands.

    3) Collectively accounts for 18% of the global cigarette market.

    4) Marlboro is one of only 2 brands with global sales exceeding $15bn per annum

    The Marlboro Man advertising campaign by the Leo Burnett Agency is widely acknowledged as one of the all time most successful advertising campaigns. Ads  depicted nothing much to do with cigarettes (i.e. paper rolled around dried leaves), but propelled the brand to the forefront of premium cigarettes market. 

    British American Tobacco / Rothmans

    Brands include – Lucky Strike, Dunhill, Rothmans and Royals

    1) The company operates in more than 150 countries.

     Reynolds American Inc.

    Brand include – Winston Salem

    Gallaher

    Brands include – Benson & Hedges, Silk Cut, Berkeley, Sovereign, Dorchester and Mayfair.

    Imperial Tobacco

    Brands include – Embassy, Regal, Superkings, Lambert & Butler and Richmond.

    Tobacco companies such as BAT and Philip Morris both run Youth Smoking prevention programs as part of their corporate social agenda. The ‘you don’t have to smoke to be cool’ advert was shown on MTV Europe, minimum age notices are placed in points of purchase and the brand logo is not sold on caps and t-shirt.

    Smoke Free Kids

    However these initiatives are dwarfed by corporate sponsorship, marketing and point of sale activity of rock concerts, Formula 1 and other motor sports. These events are attended predominately by young people whose perception of rock stars or the motor racing champion is one of cool and glamorous, who lives an inspirational lifestyle all young people can only dream off.

    The reality of driving for most people is one of congestion, frustration and pollution. Cars have always been sold on an image of open roads, hassle free driving and freedom to travel. These associations have always been the Marlboro Mans identity. Sponsoring motor-sport has taken the campaign yet another step forward from the days of the cowboy.

    Rock ‘n’ Roll stars have always been aligned with rebellion, free wheeling, on the edge and everything the previous generation despises. Again these are all qualities young people identify with and want to be a part off. These qualities are coincidentally the same as the Marlboro Man myth.

    The reality the original Marlboro Men, Wayne McLaren, is that he succumbed to lung cancer and died at the age of 51. McLaren’s brother provided a voiceover over a withered image of Wayne in a hospital bed prior to his death asking the question ‘Lying there with all those tubes in you, how independent can you really be?

    Cigarette girls are used extensively to reinforce the brand in bars clubs, high profile events, parties, film premiers, fashion shows, concerts, festivals and restaurants. Although giving away free product to customers is no longer prohibited selling them at a great reduction isn’t. There is also the perceived association of beautiful models and cigarettes, the image of glamour is aspirational and being at all the right places. It sends out a message that if you smoke you can be ‘hot like me’. Again associating cigarettes to sexy, young and glamorous women enforces the image the brands try to portray. It is the wrong message to send out when about one fifth of 15 year olds are regular smokers, with the number of girls lighting up outnumbering boys. Most of the girls I knew who promoted cigarettes in bars don’t actually smoke.

    The image of smoking in the all media is still perceived as cool. From 50’s stars such as James Dean (Rebel Without a Cause), to Michael Caine (Get Carter) right through to today’s blockbusters starring Brad Pitt (Fight Club) and John Travolta (Swordfish). These stars are immortalized in film images that are so strong the picture could be still endorsing cigarettes as a ‘cool thing’ 50 or 100 years from now in cinemas and in your home on DVD.

    Bogey smoking

        Smoking celebrities

    John Wayne Marlboro Man

    Dirk Bogart           Celebrities           John Wayne

    Throughout the 90’s the TV and film franchise ‘The X Files’ contained a character played by the non-smoking actor – William B Davis called ‘Cancer Man.’ The Fox TV publicity department were more PC and referred to the character as ‘Cigarette Smoking Man.’

    For film directors today to reinforce the image of smoking as a cool character trait is morally irresponsible, lazy and shows a great lack of imagination.

     Smoking Pete Docherty

    Kate Moss smokes

    Jonny vegas Smokes

    jodie Marsh smoking

    Certain celebrities revel in their ability to smoke cigarettes like it’s a badge of honor. The problem is in these days when celebrity is celebrated and impressionable young people readily buy into it, promoting smoking is not only irresponsible but stupid. Not all the blame can be laid at the door of this or that celerity. The media should be more careful of what photographs and images they choose to reproduce.

    Brad Pitt smokes the-first-wives-club smoking

    indy-car- sponsored by Marlboro

    holy-smokes Madonna

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  • January 2007 Perry

    Invited over to Mumbai International Film Festival India to promote King of Kommunication, a short film I made the summer before. While there I looked into the marketing and advertising of cigarettes.

     Cigarettes in a Mumbai Chemist

     Cigarettes on sale in a Chemists – Mumbai India 2007

    cigarette advertising in India

    Cigarette advertising in Mumbai 

     Advertisement above the Chemist door – Mumbai India 2007

     Roadside cigarette vendor Mumbia

     In a roadside kiosk cigarettes are sold alongside soda and sweets – Mumbai India 2007

     cigarettes indiaMarlboro cigarette advertisment Mumbai

    Marlboro and Four Square cigarette advertisement above a roadside kiosk – Mumbai India 2007

    Indian cigarette displaycigarette bar display

    Typical bar display cabinets of cigarettes – Mumbai India 2007

     cigarette menu Mumbai

      20 B&H cost less than £1.50 UKP in a bar – Mumbai India 2007

    Having heard horror stories about wild-west attitudes to marketing cigarettes in India it was reassuring to see the Indian government had stringent laws and restrictions in place against this. Although you can smoke in bars and restaurants (only inconsiderate bastards smoke in restaurants but there are still people out there arrogant enough to do so – Wankers!) advertising is largely restricted to point of sale.

    Anti smoking advertisements were also played before movies in all cinemas. The audience seemed to enjoy King of Kommunication. Well they laughed in all the right places!

    httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xsep9lBr82Q

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  • Monday 21 March 2005 Perry

    1st of a two-day meeting at PM HQ. Introduced to Marlboro Blend 28 and discussed marketing strategy with major blitz on London. Product is designed to capture B&H market by appealing to smokers of blended tobacco instead of Marlboros traditional Virginia tobacco.

    First look today at a PM vending machine that operates with credit cards. This allows the company not only to track sales, but also gather customer information. Vending operators will have direct competition from manufacturer soon On-Trade. They are not going to be happy!

    I had my resignation letter in my brief case and was going to quit today but after the meeting had wound up, my line managers were engaged in some debate and looked stressed. I didn’t have the heart to drop the bombshell on them. Typical, always thinking about everybody else accept me. Well, there’s always tomorrow.

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