Case | HBS Case Collection | November 2013 (Revised February 2014)

E-Cigarettes: Marketing Versus Public Health

by John A. Quelch and Margaret L. Rodriguez

Abstract

Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) were heralded by some as a healthcare game changer, enabling smokers to switch to a new product which carried lower risk of cancer. However, there were concerns about the public health risk of e-cigarettes, particularly the chance that teens would easily develop nicotine addictions from smoking the fruit-flavored products. Manufacturers argued that current smokers, not teens were the target market, but laws regulating e-cigarettes were far less stringent than those governing tobacco products.

Keywords: marketing; public health; tobacco; smoking; cigarettes; electronic cigarettes; cancer; lung; lorillard; Philip Morris; Safety; Technological Innovation; Conflict of Interests; Market Entry and Exit; Marketing; Health; Advertising; Consumer Products Industry; Health Industry;

Citation:

Quelch, John A., and Margaret L. Rodriguez. "E-Cigarettes: Marketing Versus Public Health." Harvard Business School Case 514-059, November 2013. (Revised February 2014.)