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Anne Landman's Collection

Project Scum

Date: 12 Dec 1995
Length: 9 pages
518021121-518021129
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Abstract

R.J. Reynolds' "Project Scum" was a plan to ramp up marketing of Camel cigarettes to "consumer subcultures" in the San Francisco area, specifically to gay people in the Castro district, "rebellious, Generation X" -ers, people of "International influence" and "street people." The plan was to introduce Camel cigarettes into less traditional retail outlets, like "head shops."

The report notes that a rationale for this was the higher incidence of smoking and drug use in subcultures.

There are several versions of this report, ranging in date from 1995-97. They offer revealing "marginalia" (handwritten markings) on the pages. For example, the words "Gay/Castro" and "Tenderloin" are hand-written next to a bulleted list of consumer subcultures on one page. On another page that discusses the rationale for the program, a sentence that reads "higher incidents of smoking in subcultures" has the phrase "and drugs" written in. On a subsequent copy, the phrase "and drugs" is crossed out. One copy of the document has the word "Scum" in the title crossed out and the word "Sourdough" hand-written in, as though RJR realized too late the degrading manner in which they were referring to their customers.

The bigger question about this document might be, what consumer would buy a company's products if he or she knew that that in the back boardroom, the company was referring to customers as "scum"?

Fields

Notes

This document was loaded onto the RJR web site on January 26, 2001, so it does not appear on Tobacco DOcuments Online. You can find all three of the documents with the title "Project Scum" (dated 1995,1996 and 1997) by going to the R.J. Reynolds document web site and entering the search criteria "Prohect Scum." I cited the 1995 document.

Quotes

PROJECT SCUM

Background:

During the introductions of Red Kamel, additional opportunities to improve Camel presence became evident in San Francisco proper.

1. Consumer Subcultures --Alternative Life Style (handwritten: "Castro/gay") --International influence --Rebellious; Generation X --Street People...more applicable to Doral (handwritten: "Tenderloin"

KNOWNS

--Opportunity exists for a cigarette manufacturer to dominate... --Population and tourist flow make area highly visible. --Camel momentum appears to be sustained or growing (on its own) --Increased receptiveness on the part of store owners to Camel marketing/presence... --High incidence of smoking and drugs in subcultures [NOTE: "and drugs" was lined out by hand] --Haven't penetrated call universe adequately.

Company
R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.
Author
N/A Corporate Author (R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company)
Recipient
N/A
Region
United States
Litigation
N/A
Operation/Project
Project Scum
Type
Report, Graphics report
Subject
advertising campaign
consumer market
marketing
Target/ethnic (targeting ethnic markets)
Target/Low-Income (Target Groups)

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Page 1: mum76d00
TA CTICAL PLAN Identify Catl Base: 0 Collect information on unknown universe 0 lltilize outsi~agency to canvas specif-rc geograpfiy • Tactical plan simitar to the low volume penetration plan MM ®
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KNOWNS O Opportunity exists for a cigarette manufacturer to dominate, although at this time no one company does. O Population and tourist flow make area highly visible O Camel momentum appears to be sustained or growing (on its own) Q295 Q495 Diif Naight 18.70 18.10 -0.60 Castro 13.28 13.56 0.28 `S.F. Metro 7.47 8.12 0.65 M. Cal Region 7.20 7.59 0.29 O Increased receptiveness on the part of dote owners to Camel marketing/presence due to emergence of"Cfieaper" stores and Camel's natural momentum. O Nigh incidents of smoking awhdMV in subcultures O Naven't penetrated call universe adequately (estimated 600 calls not covered) 4ZiT Z08T5 N ®
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® M 0 0 MANPOWE.R Current manpower doesn't allow for the level of account penetration necessary ® 0 Propose dedicated additional manpower (2 year time- frame) 4) 2 Territory Reps. 9 Report to DM N 100% Job Value 6 Company vehicle 8ZTZ Z08L5 M f:a a:" W ~M F o w
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M ® M M 3. Consumers shop in traditional small foods and Iiquor but there are additional types of retail outlets C) head-shops ~ smoke shops(not Cigarette Outlets),,,,~, uj%~-,,xc4f2" 4-. Market is fractured ea C higher # of outlets C volume base significantly below RJR call standards due to store density i) collectivefy massive volume - untrackable and unreachable with traditional Structure ( ea'm 'N " 5. Current Environrnent 4) minimal Camel Presence C minimal product availability C minimal display C) No MA 0 ~,5FIs I 8ZI1 Z08TS ® 0 0
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ap- 0 m A._,, :: ® RN 0 103A lJ/K ( i R (J JNf D, qDuringthe introduction ofRedKam% ad~~tiona/ %portunities to imptove C'ameiptesence became evidentin WVS'an Rtancisco ptopet. 1. ConsumerSubcultures C Alternative Life Style C-(,,4'" C International InflUence C Rebellious; Generation X - C Street People - More Applicable to Doral iW"'Al", 2. Camel has a higher sbare than in the general Marketplace. This was consistent in calts where we had the elements of presence/distribution and where we didn't • I-taight Ashbury - 22.6% S0M - Not S0C &OOae4-fV-) • Castro -10.5% • Downtown Metro - 7.90% • Northern California Region - 7.70% (AIM 12/30/95-2/28/96) ® ~ m U ZZII Z08i5 A £-
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0 ® EXPECTATIONS ® v [ncrernenta[ spendingon manpower (annuatty) C$100,000.00 9 Salary 9 Fringe 9 Vehicle 0 Annual volume return 4)Current estimated volume - 4-61,000 cartons CVolume breakeven - +1g,200 cartons at $5.50 MAM ~ . &&4j-&U /v aZa p~~ /~z~nu Zr3J ~~~ 2 3" ~ ~Et~ GG~ GGblM~~N~v`.~40 Y'd WG~.UC~ 0 ,2cFn•%z• iNCO~asc Gi. loooc.<zeo ` ys~srvo c+nsi{eo = l f Zeo Ct1s . W §1 F
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3P's O Establisfi product availability, display, presence standards for identified calls C Contracted displays ~ System (If or brand specifies ~ paX"ym~e~n~t p~rogra~m4dif~fer~ent from normal ~p~ar~er re uirements ~ In store presence ~~~' ~~K~-~~. ~9 product availability of major Camel brand styles and Red Kamel consistent POS/PDI placements C Store front presence ~ applicable to high visibility area only - lighted and enhanced (D Promotions j~` ~ W 6each Premiums, T-shirfi, Collector Packs "~ ~~ 4) 1=1at Discounting to match with Marlboro n 4
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