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Vapour pilot to build consumer insights

A refreshed consumer proposition for Imperial Brands’ vapour brand blu is being trialled in the US city of Charlotte, North Carolina.

Supporting the geographically focused pilot is a new and impactful ‘Get Unlit’ promotional campaign which resonated strongly with target consumers in pre-launch testing.

Enhanced blu product packaging has been introduced in more than 220 retail outlets in the Charlotte area, and a full in-store and digital consumer engagement programme will be rolled out by Imperial’s US business ITG Brands from this month.

Kim Reed, President and CEO, USA Region, said: “blu has good brand equity and engagement for us to build on, and we look forward to understanding the learnings from this targeted trial.

“Valuable consumer insights from the initiative will inform our plans for a national roll-out that we believe can fulfil the potential of the blu brand in the US.”

Alongside two heated tobacco markets trials in Europe, the USA pilot forms part of Imperial’s disciplined approach to building a targeted Next Generation Products (NGP) business. Consumer response to all three trials will be monitored over the coming months.

Notes to editors

We have reset our NGP strategy in 2021 with a significantly different approach, informed by consumer insights and validation. We are focusing our investment behind heated tobacco opportunities in Europe, and in selective market opportunities in vapour, particularly in the USA. Our oral nicotine business remains focused on its existing markets within Europe. Our investment will be disciplined and based on detailed market testing, and our aim is to develop a sustainable NGP business that supports our ESG agenda by making a meaningful contribution to harm reduction.