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Marketing Approach - U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company

At U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company, our marketing goal is to find ways to effectively, responsibly and profitably connect our brands with adult tobacco consumers.

Marketing Practices

USSTC is guided by Altria Group’s Mission, as well as Altria's Code of Conduct, and is committed to marketing our products responsibly by building relationships between our brands and adult tobacco consumers while taking steps designed to limit reach to unintended audiences.

We primarily compete in the U.S. smokeless tobacco category with brands such as Copenhagen, Skoal, Red Seal and Husky. We design our marketing programs to enhance brand awareness, recognition and loyalty among adult tobacco consumers to grow market share.

We have practices in place to focus our marketing activities toward adult tobacco consumers while limiting reach to unintended audiences. For example:

  • We use age-verified direct consumer communications such as websites or direct mail. In order to receive these communications, adult tobacco consumers must:
    • certify they currently use tobacco and that they are 21 years of age or older;
    • certify they are interested in receiving communications from one of our companies;
    • provide their self-certified date of birth; and
    • have had their age verified as 21 years of age or older by either a face-to-face examination of the individual’s valid government-issued identification by a company representative or by completing third-party electronic age verification.
    A person may request to no longer receive further mailings at any time.

  • Where we use print advertising (newspapers, magazines, periodicals or other publications), we are guided by FDA’s proposed definition of the term “adult publication”. Under this standard, an adult publication is one:
    • Whose readers younger than 18 years of age constitute 15 percent or less of the total readership as measured by competent and reliable survey evidence; and
    • That is read by fewer than 2 million persons younger than 18 years of age as measured by competent and reliable survey evidence.

  • We also conduct marketing programs in adult-only facilities to reinforce brand equity, support product launches and deliver promotions to adult tobacco consumers. In these adult-only facilities, entry is restricted to attendees who verify that they are adults with a government-issued identification.

  • We work with retailers to restrict product access. In addition to adherence to federal, state and local laws, our trade programs require retailers to merchandise tobacco products in a non-self-service manner to reduce potential underage access to tobacco products. We support the WeCard® program, which helps train and assist retail clerks to check IDs before selling tobacco products.

  • We deny requests for permission to use or display our companies’ brands in any movies or television shows or other public entertainment media.

  • We continue to evaluate the potential use of social media to connect the brands with our adult tobacco consumers in ways that are age-restricted and that are consistent with our responsible marketing practices and policies.
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