CVS Health to be first brand to boycott agencies marketing smoking or vaping

Retail pharmacy CVS Health has taken moral action to oppose tobacco and e-cigarette companies by being the first major brand to boycott any agency that promotes smoking or vaping via the Quit Big Tobacco campaign.

The definite stance has been prompted by a continued marketing push by tobacco firms to attract new customers.

Norman de Greve, chief marketing officer for CVS Health, said: “Big tobacco is increasingly using new channels to directly target our youth – including leveraging social media and influencers. We unequivocally take the Quit Big Tobacco pledge, meaning we will not work with any marketing and public relations agencies that have ties with the tobacco industry, and we urge other companies to join us in this critically important fight.”

Over 200 smaller organisations have already signed the Quit Big Tobacco pledge, committing to work solely with tobacco-free agencies such as Crispin Porter Bogusky

Alex Bogusky, co-founder and chief creative officer of advertising agency CPB, added: “Tobacco companies claim that all their lying and deception is behind them, but they’re reaching out to their old advertising friends under new pretences. At CPB, we know agency reputation and new business suffers when a client’s goal is selling addiction.

“CVS Health’s pledge to Quit Big Tobacco is a strong signal to our industry that cutting ties with the tobacco industry isn’t just good practice- it’s good business.”

Tobacco giants such as Philip Morris have sought to distance themselves from their core product by diversifying into new markets such as life insurance, going so far as to offer discounts to ex-smokers.

Source: TheDrum