The Marlboro Story

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

Case Details:


Case Code : MKTG117 For delivery in electronic format: Rs. 400;
For delivery through courier (within India): Rs. 400 + Rs. 25 for Shipping & Handling Charges


Case Length : 17 Pages
Period : 1950 - 2005
Pub Date : 2006
Teaching Note : Not Available
Organization : Philip Morris Inc.
Industry : Tobacco
Countries : USA


The case discusses the marketing strategies of Philip Morris USA (Philip Morris), a leading tobacco company in the US, for its popular cigarette brand, Marlboro. It shows how the company used the image of a cowboy to successfully establish the brand Marlboro in the minds of consumers. The case also discusses the various marketing strategies adopted by Philip Morris before and after the implementation of the Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) which imposed severe restrictions on marketing of tobacco products in the US. It shows how the marketing strategies adopted by Philip Morris over the years have helped it in retaining Marlboro as a top selling brand since its re-launch in the early 1950s.


• Brand Personality

• Role of Regulatory Bodies in Marketing of Harmful Products

• Role of Promotional Tools in Building Customer Loyalty

• Importance of 'Integrated Marketing Communication'

• Role of Advertising and Promotion in Customer Retention

• Developing a Cult Brand

• Change Management


  Page No.
Introduction 1
Background Note 2
Discovering the Marlboro Man 4
The Master Settlement Agreement and After 7
Building Customer Loyalty 10
Marlboro Still Reigns 11
Outlook 13
Exhibits 14


Altria Group Inc, Marlboro, Philip Morris Inc, Marlboro Country, Master Settlement Agreement, Point-of-sale advertising, Kraft General Foods International, SABMiller, Reader's Digest, Leo Burnett Company, US Surgeon General, RJ Reynolds, Brown & Williamson, US Federal Trade Commission, industry fixture, relationship marketing, promotional campaigns, Marlboro Cowboy Breakfast

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