Philip Morris International (PMI) claims it doesn’t market to kids, but a hard-hitting report we released with long-time ally Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids shows otherwise.
In 2011 the tobacco corporation intensified its youth-targeted marketing with an aggressive campaign created by the advertising firm responsible for the Marlboro Man. PMI’s “Be Marlboro” campaign used images of attractive young people falling in love, partying, or going on an adventure. It links glamour, risk-taking, and the freedom of young adulthood with the Marlboro brand. A German court found the ads encouraged children as young as 14 to smoke. With public health allies, we released “You’re the Target,” an exposé which pushed Brazil, Colombia, and Switzerland to challenge the ads in court, claiming the campaign violates their tobacco advertising laws.