It is undeniable that TikTok has hundreds of millions of users worldwide, which is a huge opportunity for marketers. Not only does it surpass Snapchat and Twitter in popularity, but TikTok also has fewer ads than its outdated products. This app allows people to edit and share videos with built-in music, filters and effects, and its extraordinary virality has undoubtedly shocked the advertising world.
Despite this, TikTok helps e-cigarette companies bypass the FDA’s prohibition on marketing to people under 21. In fact, in the past few years, some videos have been played cautiously on app marketing e-cigarettes like Puff Bars. The video not only shows people smoking e-cigarettes, but also clearly mentions how to buy e-cigarettes.
Why did LOOKAH start marketing on TikTok?
TikTok is an ideal way for e-cigarette companies to reach more audiences, especially young people, without supervision. Since 2016, the FDA’s rules prohibiting sales and advertising to minors have existed. The agency’s consideration rules prohibit e-cigarette companies from marketing until they are approved by the FDA through the pre-market tobacco approval process.
On the other hand, when the federal government banned the use of condiments nationwide, it took further action against the youth e-cigarettes in the EVALI disaster. But unlike SMOK magnetic grips, some disposable e-cigarette companies such as Puff Bars have exploited the loopholes in the federal ban. In fact, the new law is only designed for flavors and reusable devices, but it still allows the use of disposable e-cigarettes or refillable cans.
Although the government took action against them, this ambiguity allowed the e-cigarette company to sell. Most of TikTok’s user base is young people. Looking back, it was found that one-third of its users were under the age of 14, which was shocking for some reason.
LOOKAH Marketing: Why is it difficult to control?
A large amount of content is uploaded on TikTok every day, so it is difficult to regulate the content displayed to the younger generation, such as promoting the content of e-cigarette devices to people who are not allowed to buy and use e-cigarette devices.
Payment applications such as PayPal and Venmo also make it easier to sell devices because buyers don’t need to use a credit card when making purchases.
This unregulated acquisition of e-cigarette products by minors is completely illegal. Although the app has been doing its best to get rid of other types of information such as election false information, content related to e-cigarettes seems to have been booming.
On the other hand, teenagers did not shy away from watching these videos because they received millions of views and likes on each post.
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How to eliminate e-cigarette ads from TikTok
According to a TikTok spokesperson, they do not allow any tobacco-related content to be posted on their platform. In addition, it promises to eliminate e-cigarettes or tobacco-related content reported and discovered. However, TikTok does not actively pay attention to e-cigarette-related content like other platforms such as Instagram and Facebook. Social media platforms have developed new rules to prevent e-cigarette sellers from providing wrong information and unsafe products.