Monash University

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The effectiveness of tobacco demarketing tools in their role in influencing the process of quitting smoking for different segments of tobacco smokers

posted on 2017-01-09, 04:25 authored by James William Sampson
This thesis examined the effectiveness of tobacco demarketing tools in their role in influencing the process of quitting smoking for different segments of tobacco smokers. These tools included graphic images, text warnings, debranded packaging, tobacco tax increases, televised antismoking advertisements, nicotine replacement therapy, cessation support services, point-of-sale display bans and smoke-free air laws. The segments used to identify smokers were visualiser-verbaliser, brand consciousness, income, smoking rate, trait anxiety, gender and trait impulsivity. This study’s theoretical framework comprised the marketing mix and market segmentation coupled with theories of consumer behaviour, which included the tripartite model of attitude and theory of planned behaviour. This study was conducted in response to the ongoing issue of tobacco smoking both worldwide and within the research context of Australia. A holistic model was developed to address three research questions relating to this problem: (1) how effective is each tobacco demarketing tool in its role in influencing the process of quitting?; (2) does the effectiveness of tobacco demarketing tools differ according to specific segments of tobacco smokers?; and, (3) what influence does subjective norm, perceived behavioural control and overall attitude have on smokers’ behavioural intention to quit smoking?
       A quantitative, survey-based design was employed, using online questionnaires to collect data from a random sample of current smokers within a market research firm’s respondent panel database. The statistical technique used for analysis was structural equation modelling (SEM). This technique confirmed the validity and reliability of the model and tested the hypotheses addressing the research questions. Results of the SEM analysis were also used in a Sobel test for indirect effects and in a critical ratio for differences test to respectively test the mediation and moderation components of the model. A supplementary analysis to moderation was also performed using independent samples t tests. In addressing the first research question, results revealed only tobacco tax increases and smoke-free air laws are effective in influencing the process of quitting smoking. In addressing the second research question, the effectiveness of such tools did not differ according to different smoker segments, however a supplementary analysis revealed smokers’ attitudes towards the tools are influenced by these segmentation variables. In addressing the final research question, results revealed that intention to quit smoking is influenced by overall attitude towards quitting smoking and perceived behavioural control.
       This study represents the first to take a holistic approach to simultaneously evaluating the effectiveness of all key tobacco demarketing tools and, in addition, recognise that each tool plays either one of three specific roles – influence attitude, influence intention or transitioning the former to the latter – in influencing the process of quitting. Finally, a contribution made by this study was its application of a market segmentation approach in assessing the effectiveness of key demarketing tools.


Campus location


Principal supervisor

Vaughan Reimers

Additional supervisor 1

Alan Lawton

Year of Award


Department, School or Centre



Doctor of Philosophy

Degree Type



Faculty of Business and Economics

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