Marketing a healthier choice: exploring young people’s perception of e-cigarettes

Abraham Brown, Seamus Allison*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Background: As a consequence of insufficient evidence on the safety and efficacy of e cigarettes, there has been much controversy surrounding its use in the tobacco control field.                                                                            Objectives: We sought to examine smoking prevalence and salience of e-cigarettes marketing stimuli, and whether these affected attitude-relevant responses toward e-cigarettes and intention to vape.                       Methodology: A convenience sampling procedure was used to recruit 436 ever- and never-smokers aged 18 or older in the UK. Correlation analysis and structural equation modelling tested direct and indirect relationships between salience of e-cigarettes marketing messages, attitude relevant variables, and intention to vape.                                                                                      Results: Just over half of never-smokers were females compared to two-thirds of ever-smokers who were males. Majority of respondents comprising 56% of ever-smokers and 63% of never-smokers had seen e-cigarette promotion in stores or gas stations. Only a third or less of ever- and never-smokers had seen e-cigarette promotion on TV, newspaper or online. Among never-smokers, association between e-cigarette promotion awareness and intention to vape was significant (B= .59, p < .001) but this was mediated by conative beliefs (B=.84, p =.05). Among ever-smokers, awareness of e-cigarette significantly affected cognitive (B= .97, p =.01) and conative attitudes (B= .88, p =.001), which in turn affected intention to vape in future (B= .45, p < .001).                      Conclusions: Our results suggest that never-smokers might think of vaping instead of smoking cigarettes in future. Likewise, ever-smokers might have intention to vape if they think favourably about promotional stimuli and develop positive emotions towards vaping. Our study supports the need for more scientific evidence on the efficacy of e-cigarettes to encourage vaping as a substitute to smoking.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Academy of Marketing Conference 2017
Place of PublicationHelensburgh
PublisherAcademy of Marketing
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9781527212718
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2017
Externally publishedYes
Event50th Academy of Marketing Conference (AM2017): Freedom Through Marketing: Looking Back, Going Forward - University of Hull, Kingston upon Hull, United Kingdom
Duration: 3 Jul 20176 Jul 2017


Conference50th Academy of Marketing Conference (AM2017)
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
CityKingston upon Hull
Internet address


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