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1.  Associations between perceptions of e-cigarette advertising and interest in product trial amongst US adult smokers and non-smokers: results from an internet-based pilot survey 
Tobacco Induced Diseases  2015;13(1):14.
Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) have risen in popularity in the U.S. While recent studies have described the prevalence and demographics of e-cigarette users, few studies have evaluated the impact of advertising on perceptions and interest in trial. This pilot study was conducted to assess whether exposure to ads for e-cigarettes or a comparison product (snus), elicited differences in interest to try e-cigarettes between smokers and non-smokers.
A web-based survey was completed by 600 respondents, aged 18–65, recruited from an internet panel in the U.S. Respondents answered questions assessing tobacco use, and then viewed nine magazine ads for Blu e-cigarettes or Camel snus, a low-nitrosamine smokeless tobacco product, in random order. After viewing each ad, respondents were asked a series of questions about their perceptions, beliefs, attitudes, and interest in trial. At the end, respondents were asked to choose a free sample product from the following options: an e-cigarette, smokeless tobacco (SLT), pack of cigarettes, or no product.
Ad receptivity scores did not appear to be influenced by ad theme; differences existed between smokers and non-smokers. Participants exposed to e-cigarette ads more frequently reported favorable product attitudes compared to participants exposed to snus ads. Cigarette smokers in the e-cigarette condition were more likely to report interest in trying e-cigarettes compared to non-smokers in that condition (p-value < 0.001). Six percent of non-smokers exposed to e-cigarette ads reported interest in trying e-cigarettes. E-cigarettes were the most popular product selected to sample (34 %), followed by cigarettes (8 %) and SLT (3 %); 331 respondents (55 %) chose no product. Participants randomized to the e-cigarette ad group were significantly more likely to choose an e-cigarette at product selection (p-value = 0.014). Within the e-cigarette condition, 71 % of smokers selected an e-cigarette at product selection, compared to 25 % of non-smokers; smoking status was significantly associated with sample product selection (p-value <0.001).
These findings suggest that exposure to e-cigarette ads may be associated with interest in e-cigarette trial, particularly among smokers. Continued exposure to advertising in magazines, on television, and at the point-of-sale may have an impact on willingness to receive promotional products or intention to try e-cigarettes.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12971-015-0039-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4502389  PMID: 26180523
Electronic cigarettes; Advertising; Tobacco; Marketing; Smoking
2.  Impact of smokeless tobacco packaging on perceptions and beliefs among youth, young adults, and adults in the U.S: findings from an internet-based cross-sectional survey 
Research demonstrates that tobacco packaging elements (including health warning labels, descriptive characteristics, and corporate branding) are associated with knowledge of health risks and product appeal with cigarettes. Yet, little research has assessed this with smokeless tobacco (SLT) packaging. This study evaluates the association between three SLT packaging elements with knowledge of health risks and perceptions of novelty and appeal. Additionally, we assess how effects of these messages may differ across age groups, including youth (14-17 years), young adults (18-25 years), and older adults (26-65 years).
1000 participants were administered a web-based survey in 2010 and shown three sets of SLT packs in random order, varied by descriptor (flavor descriptor vs. none), warning label format (graphic vs. text), and corporate branding (branded vs. plain packaging). Participants rated the packs compared with “no difference” on appeal, novelty, and risk perceptions associated with product use. Chi-square tests were used to test for significant differences in pack selections. Multinomial regression was employed to evaluate the association between effects of packaging elements and participant age.
More respondents selected the pack with the graphic warning label as the pack to make them consider the health risks associated with SLT use, attract their attention, and be least attractive to a smoker. The product with the text warning label was the product someone their age would want to be seen using and would appeal to peers. The SLT pack with the flavor descriptor was not associated with health risks associated with product use. The pack with corporate branding was selected as more appealing, to attract attention, and one they would want to be seen using; the plain pack was less attractive to smokers. Youth and young adults were more likely to indicate that pack elements affected their perceptions of appeal and risk associated with SLT products.
These results suggest that SLT pack characteristics have a measurable effect on perceptions of health risk and product appeal. Future research should assess these findings in the context of harm reduction. Specifically, research is needed to determine whether pack elements on SLT products can effectively convey risk and harm.
PMCID: PMC3942180  PMID: 24433301
Smokeless tobacco; Tobacco packaging; Health warning labels; Tobacco marketing
3.  Tobacco sales in pharmacies: a survey of attitudes, knowledge and beliefs of pharmacists employed in student experiential and other worksites in Western New York 
BMC Research Notes  2012;5:413.
Pharmacies are venues in which patients seek out products and professional advice in order to improve overall health. However, many pharmacies in the United States continue to sell tobacco products, which are widely known to cause detrimental health effects. This conflict presents a challenge to pharmacists, who are becoming increasingly more involved in patient health promotion activities. This study sought to assess Western New York (WNY) area pharmacists’ opinions about the sale of tobacco products in pharmacies, and pharmacists’ opinions on their role in patient smoking cessation.
Participants responded to two parallel surveys; a web-based survey was completed by 148 university-affiliated pharmacist preceptors via a list based sample, and a mail-based survey was completed by the supervising pharmacist in 120 area pharmacies via a list-based sample. The combined response rate for both surveys was 31%. Univariate and bivariate analyses were performed to determine any significant differences between the preceptor and supervising pharmacist survey groups.
Over 75% of respondents support legislation banning the sale of tobacco products in pharmacies. Over 86% of respondents would prefer to work in a pharmacy that does not sell tobacco products. Differences between preceptor and supervising pharmacist groups were observed. Action regarding counseling patients was uncommon among both groups.
Pharmacists support initiatives that increase their role in cessation counseling and initiatives that restrict the sale of tobacco products in pharmacies. These data could have important implications for communities and pharmacy practice.
PMCID: PMC3492148  PMID: 22867129
Tobacco sales; Pharmacists; Preceptors; Public health policy; Survey research; Pharmacies

Results 1-3 (3)