This article will not attempt to resolve the three-pronged paradox that CSR and The Tobacco Industry: A Contradiction in Terms? points out. Instead, we will look at a Case Study Solution that many case studies, both the ones from the United States and the various cases from different parts of the world, have successfully applied in dealing with the paradox.
The first element to deal with in dealing with the paradox is the importance of content. To put it very simply, the tobacco industry has become addicted to their marketing message, which has become a source of even more profit for them. But despite this, the content of the messages they create for their clients is usually considered unworthy of us all.
Many of the messages that they use have substance, despite the fact that they do not necessarily contain content. For example, in the United States, companies that sell mentholated cigarettes have created a niche for themselves by creating a nicotine fix without giving the consumer a break from smoking. There is a high profit margin associated with this, but we are all forgetting that our young people are also heavily relying on mentholated cigarettes.
Although the Case Study Solution mentions the subject of content, we must go even further into the topic of misuse of content. Not only has the tobacco industry used millions of dollars on their message, but they have also managed to leverage our insecurities about cigarette smoke to further promote their products.
They spend millions on spot advertising campaigns such as TV ads, outdoor ads, and even radio commercials that the government agencies limit. This can be seen as a misuse of the content of the messages they produce for their clients because the messages end up “selling” us something that is, ultimately, harmful to our health.
They have succeeded in making it seem like smoking is safe by “destroying” the myth that cigarette smoke is dangerous. They also ensure that the messages that the youth get through these spots do not mention anything bad about cigarette smoke and just make you stop smoking. There is a reason why cigarette companies know how to develop a good spot, and that is because the message is not supposed to be harmful but rather encouraging.
For example, when you see the TV ads for Redbull, you never hear any kind of negative information regarding the consumption of the drinks, the effects that they can have on your body, or anything that could be considered a warning. The message the company is conveying to you is, “This drink will help you overcome your cigarette addiction”.
We often hear that cases of food poisoning due to contaminated snack foods should be a cause for concern, yet some researchers who are involved in the anti-tobacco fight prefer to see the creation of snacks as “positive” because they are a “form of enjoyment”. They would like to call snacks a form of entertainment, a positive use of snacks, and even a wonderful addition to the healthful diet.
It is all a fun thing to talk about, but the truth is that all these snack foods have a long way to go before they are completely safe. And we need to remember that the overhyped ad campaigns do not have the opportunity to create meaningful and effective change for the younger generation, either. The youth have not yet developed the critical thinking skills that prevent them from accepting the information that is presented to them, and the communication is done through their desire to consume this snack that has been given to them.
All those who worked so hard to bring us a message about obesity-related illnesses, most notably in social support groups, are under attack by the industries that they were fighting against. Their mission is to make sure that the messages and campaigns continue in a new medium: smart phones. We have seen how this works in the United States, and in many other countries around the world.