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Newport Red vs. Marlboro (Product Test)

Excerpts from Newport Red Product Research 1982

Summary Of Findings: Unidentified Test

1. The overall achievement of Newport Red among franchise smokers of Marlboro cigarettes, clearly shows that the new brand "does not deliver like a Marlboro". On all key evaluative criteria, Marlboro significantly outperforms Newport Red Non-Menthol.
- Marlboro enjoys a significant preference advantage over Newport Red (.44% vs. 28%).
- Mean ratings obtained by the two brands show a significant leverage for Marlboro (68 vs. 63).
- Although firm buying intentions do not meaningfully distinguish Marlboro and Newport Red (.15% vs. 13%), expressed levels of total positive buying intent are significantly in favor of Marlboro (.63% vs. 50%).
2. Marlboro’s significantly superior level of overall performance extends across all age, sex and smoking volume subgroups, but particularly females and "light" (i.e. - under 1 pack/day) smokers. Among the key group of 21-24 year olds, Marlboro clearly outperforms Newport Red, especially with regard to expressed levels of future buying intent.
- Younger smokers significantly were more interested in buying Marlboro in the future than they were in purchasing Newport Red (60% vs. 41%).
- Overall preference and intensity of preference among this market subgroup both showed superior performance for Marlboro over Newport Red (45% vs. 35%; 67 vs. 62).
3. Diagnostically, the central difference between the brands revolves around strength of delivery. The data is consistent in reflecting that Newport Red is a stronger, more impactful cigarette, whereas Marlboro is lighter and milder.
- In addition to a wide range of other attributes, Marlboro was significantly preferred over Newport Red on the benefit dimension "had a mild taste" (.44% vs. 25%).
- Newport Red’s only area of relative leverage vis-a-vis Marlboro was with regard to "has a strong taste".
- Directional evaluations show consistently higher levels of criticism for Newport Red rather than Marlboro for having "too strong a taste" (38% vs. 25%) as well as "too much taste" (33% vs. 23%).
- Volunteered commenting, both in a positive and negative fashion, continue to show indications of the strength vs. mildness distinctions between Newport Red and Marlboro.
4. The greater strength of delivery of Newport Red additionally appears to result in a lesser product acceptance regarding aesthetic smoking benefits. Instead, Marlboro’s milder nature contributes, to advantages, in smoothness, draw, aftertaste, a lack of negative reactions, freshness and general smoking satisfaction.
- Marlboro enjoys significant preference wins over Newport Red on all of the following aesthetically-related smoking dimensions: "is a smooth cigarette", "has the right amount of sweetness", leaves a fresh taste in the mouth", "does not cause unpleasant sensations", "tastes good after a meal" and "has a satisfying taste". In addition, mean ratings further show a significant advantage for Marlboro for "has a smooth, easy draw".
- There is not a single aesthetic benefit in which Newport Red outperforms Marlboro.
5. The superior diagnostic performance of Marlboro extends to all consumer subgroups with few important distinctions. The singular exception may be the even greater non-acceptance of Newport Red among females, light smokers and perhaps 21-24 year olds on the basis of more unsatisfactory strength of taste delivery and related aesthetic smoking benefits.
- Although attribute preferences consistently reflect an "advantage" for Newport Red over Marlboro regarding "strength of taste", the difference in preference was least apparent among females and light smokers.
- Light smokers and females are the only subgroups who significantly prefer Marlboro over Newport Red for "smoothness", "not causing unpleasant smoking sensations in the mouth or throat" and "having the right amount of sweetness".
- Light smokers also gave Marlboro significant leverage regarding "aftertaste", "mildness" and "leaving a fresh taste in the mouth".
- Among 21-24's, significant wins were evident regarding "sweetness" and "leaving a fresh taste in the mouth". In addition, consistently strong directional wins were apparent for Marlboro in all other aesthetic product benefit areas.

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