Smokers Turning to E‑cigarettes

Consumers are getting the message that smoking is not good for their health. But a significant percentage of the population continues to indulge in the habit. As they encounter a more hostile environment toward traditional cigarettes, some smokers are turning to e‑cigarettes according to BlueShiftIdeas research.

Researchers believe that teen smokers, more than any other group, have been picking up the e‑cigarette habit, or vaping, in a big way. Analysts claim the number of teens who vape increased from 79,000 in 2011 to more than 263,000 in 2013. In general, research revealed that younger consumers, those under age 29, and lower-​income folks are most likely to smoke any kind of product. In general, about 12% of the population smokes cigarettes. About 1% of the population now smokes e‑cigarettes.

Interestingly, the cigarette smoking rate is lowest for consumers over age 60: 11.3%. About 23% of consumers under age 29 smoke cigarettes. Similarly, about 4.1% of younger consumers say they smoke e‑cigarettes while only about 1% of 60+ consumers do.

Researchers also offered this profile of tobacco smokers in terms of products used:

  • Traditional cigarettes: 66.9%
  • E‑cigarettes: 8.8%
  • Hookah: 6.6%
  • Cigars: 18.2%

Researchers showed a strong correlation between smoking habits and income. About 10% of consumers with annual income over $150,000 confess to smoking traditional cigarettes. Over 27% of consumers with income less than $25,000 smoke cigarettes. These lower-​income consumers show the highest rate of e‑cigarette use, 5.5%.

Researchers believe the growing sales of e‑cigarettes could erode sales of traditional cigarettes. E‑cigarette shoppers are more likely to be male (56.2%) than female (43.8%). AudienceSCAN research shows that these consumers are more likely than average to engage in other risk-​taking behavior. For example, 37.7% play the lottery.  These consumers also like to party. They host or attend Super Bowl parties,  celebrate New Year’s Eve at restaurants, bars, or lounges, and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at a restaurant or bar at higher than average rates. In the last 30 days, 55.3% of these audience members took action as a result of a TV ad they’ve seen, which is 35% higher than average.

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the Audience Intelligence Reports in AdMall.

Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.