Atomik Resarch were recently commissioned to conduct PR research for Japan Tobacco International.   The campaign looked at the rise of illegal tobacco in Staffordshire. Due to the regionality of the campaign, the research was targeted to just 450 smokers in Staffordshire.

The tobacco and illegal cigarettes found in Staffordshire was found to contain asbestos, mould, dust, dead flies, rat droppings and human excrement.

The key findings of the PR research included:

  • 86% of smokers were sold Illegal roll your own tobacco (RYO) and fake cigarettes across Staffordshire
  • 55% of smokers in Staffordshire have bought cigarettes which they perceived to be fake
  • 43% have bought cigarettes featuring another language on the packaging
  • 24% have bought cigarettes which have been purchased through a friend/family abroad
  • 81% of respondents have bought one of the following three types of cigarettes
  • 81% of respondents have bought one of the following three types of cigarettes
  • 53% would not report it
  • 47% of smokers said they would consider purchasing illegal tobacco.
  • The main reasons include:
    • It’s readily available (51%)
    • Saving money’ (48%),
    • Smaller packs not being available (30%)

The campaign was fronted by Steve Wilkins, JTI’s Anti-illicit Trade Director and former Detective Chief Superintendent who talked about the recent test purchasing in Staffordshire, and the impact of the illegal tobacco trade in the UK.

The client specifically requested regional coverage in and around Staffordshire, a goal that was met successfully by our experts. They achieved this securing coverage on the Stoke Sentinel in print and online,  West Midlands Express and Star in print and online and the Shropshire Star. Our media team also secured interviews on Stafford FM, Touch FM and Moorlands Radio.

Happn Dating PR ResearchMet Office UV PR Research