web comment

All puff of a decision?
The story that tobacco companies could be forced to sell cigarettes in plain brown packaging sparked much debate online:

As a ex smoker, I’m all for making smoking less appealing to cut the numbers of people who smoke. But when I started smoking, the brand, packaging and logos had no influence on what I smoked – the price did. And surely if we go down this route, then the same will have to apply to alcohol – after all, it’s addictive, causes serious health and mental issues and costs the NHS millions to treat the abuse.
Andrew

In the interests of our future generations’ health, this is a brilliant concept but I fear that’s all it is, a concept.
Debranding packets has deep implications; how will a genuine of age purchaser be able to distinguish between different brands and products? And, far more important, with the rise in counterfeit cigarettes available through legitimate retail avenues, the tobacco industry should be encouraged to spend more on packaging to challenge counterfeiters.
Anonymous

This may still not achieve the objective of discouraging smoking. Already, through the ban on advertising, cigarette brands lack ’external’ sources of imagery, yet rates of smoking remain high. Moving to standardised packaging may remove some of the ’cool’ factor associated with specific brands, but the ’cool’ factor around the category remains a more challenging prospect. Smoking has become deeply rooted in popular culture. The government will need to prompt a re-invention of the cultural cannon without the influence of tobacco and the many distinctive icons it has created, from the ruggedness of Marlboro man to the altogether smoother and distinctly purple sheen so reminiscent of Silk Cut.
However, what this debate does highlight is the crucial role of packaging in the marketing mix.
Jessica Bower, Sundance London

Latest from Marketing Week

PLEASE SIGN IN OR REGISTER. IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and inspiration that will help you develop as a marketer and leader.

Register and receive the best content from the only title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work, so we can make Marketing Week more relevant to you.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team and columnists will ask the biggest questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we will be your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Dedicated to developing your skills and helping you achieve marketing excellence. Find guidance on leadership, professional development and the latest industry jobs.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here