Objectives: To examine the tobacco industry's use of bar promotions, including their target groups, objectives, strategies, techniques, and results.
Design: Over 2000 tobacco industry documents available as a result of the Master Settlement Agreement were reviewed on the internet at several key web sites using keyword searches that included "bar", "night", "pub", "party", and "club". The majority of the documents deal with the US market, with a minor emphasis on Canadian and overseas markets.
Results: The documents indicate that bar promotions are important for creating and maintaining brand image, and are generally targeted at a young adult audience. Several measures of the success of these promotions are used, including number of individuals exposed to the promotion, number of promotional items given away, and increased sales of a particular brand during and after the promotion.
Conclusion: Bar promotions position cigarettes as being part of a glamorous lifestyle that includes attendance at nightclubs and bars, and appear to be highly successful in increasing sales of particular brands.