WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – May 15, 2019 – R. J. Reynolds Vapor Company (“RJRVC”), an operating company of Reynolds American Inc., a member of the British American Tobacco Group, today introduced its VUSE brand to social media. The launch of VUSE social media accounts is a continuation of RJRVC’s mission to transform tobacco, and to do so responsibly.
Adding social media as a communications channel allows RJRVC to better communicate with age 21+ adult tobacco consumers about its brands. RJRVC has demonstrated that VUSE can be marketed responsibly to age 21+ adult tobacco consumers and it is committed to continuing to do so on these platforms.
“Utilizing social media as a channel for communication is a part of our effort to engage with adult tobacco consumers where they already are and reflects the way that modern adult tobacco consumers access information about, and engage with our brand,” said Zosya Popik, Senior Manager of Consumer Marketing, Digital, and Social.
The VUSE social media audience will be generated organically, comprised of adult consumers with a genuine interest in the VUSE brand and products, and the content shared on the channels will focus on attributes of VUSE products along with trends among our consumers. In particular, the content will focus on the technology that underpins VUSE products and is specifically designed to focus on informing adult tobacco consumers about our products and is intended to be relevant to existing tobacco consumers who are 21+.
“We feel that social media can be used the right way in our industry, and we will define what that looks like. We feel we have developed a ‘gold standard’ for using these social media responsibly in our industry,” said Christy Canary-Garner, Vice President of Consumer Marketing, VUSE. “Reynolds is continuously investing in worldclass R&D and innovative technology that will lead the tobacco industry forward.”
RJRVC has also taken extensive measures to ensure VUSE channels are used as an information-sharing platform and are directed to adult tobacco consumers age 21+. These measures include:
• Age Gating: Placing all of VUSE-branded social media content behind an age-gated wall to ensure that content is accessible only to adults who have self-reported that they are age 21+ on the social media platform;
• User Monitoring: Vetting followers and partnering with a third-party software solutions service, which will use data analytics and manual review to review the social media accounts of our followers to block or remove any followers that appear to be under 21 or demonstrate an inauthentic identity;
• Content: Taking steps to ensure content is specifically designed to limit appeal to youth, focusing on informing adult tobacco consumers about RJRVC’s products, rather than promoting products as defining of a specific kind of lifestyle. All content will have warnings appropriately displayed in the images;
• Public Conversation and Content Reaction Assessment: Using cutting edge listening tools to assess how content is being received in the market and make adjustments to our content, policies, and/or strategy as needed.
• Age Verification at Purchase: Utilizing robust third-party age-verification process to restrict purchases on our website to adult consumers age 21 and older;
• Purchase limits: Imposing purchase limits for online purchases at vusevapor.com; and
• Training Program: Expanding corporate support of We Card, a retail age-verification training program, to reduce youth access.
RJRVC stands firm that minors should never use tobacco, in any form, and continues to implement practices and support programs to limit underage use and retail access.
About R. J. Reynolds Vapor Company and Reynolds American Inc. R. J. Reynolds Vapor Company (“Reynolds Vapor”) is an operating company of Reynolds American Inc. (“RAI”), a member of the British American Tobacco Group. RAI’s operating companies remain committed to responsibly marketing age-restricted tobacco products. RAI’s operating companies' marketing communications are designed for, and directed to, existing adult tobacco consumers who are 21 and older. This standard is implemented in a variety of ways. First, direct interactions with consumers via e-mail, direct mail, and consumer engagements are restricted to existing 21+ adult consumers of tobacco products who have opted in to receive communications from RAI’s operating companies that manufacture tobacco products. Specifically, before receiving e-mails or direct mail from an RAI operating company and prior to making any purchase of REVEL at thatsrevel.com, or Reynolds Vapor products at vusevapor.com, consumers must certify that they are a tobacco consumer, aged 21 or older, interested in receiving communications and offers, and must be age-verified by an independent thirdparty age verification provider. Second, with respect to mass media (print advertising, television, online advertising), Reynolds Vapor employs strict guidelines to ensure that the audience viewership is overwhelmingly adult. In addition to restricting the dissemination of marketing communications, RAI’s operating companies also impose numerous restrictions on the content of those marketing messages.
To learn more about Reynolds American, Inc. and its operating companies, please visit www.reynoldsamerican.com
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