KOOL is a brand of menthol cigarette produced by the R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, introduced in 1933, that has marketed itself towards the "sophisticated man". Originally introduced as an unfiltered "regular" size (i.e., short) cigarette, filtered 85 mm king-size versions were later added to the lineup as filtered cigarettes gained popularity in the 1960s. Since then, mild (milder menthol flavor), light (reduced tar), and 100 mm long varieties have been introduced.
All Kool cigarettes are menthol flavored.
- Kool Filter Kings (Full Flavor) (Kings) - Soft, Box
- Kool Super Longs (Full Flavor) (100's) - Soft, Box
- Kool Blue (Milds) - Kings and 100's - Box
- Kool XL (Wides) Green (Full Flavor) - Kings - Box
- Kool XL (Wides) Blue (Milds) - Kings - Box
- Kool Freezing Point
- Kool Midnight Blast
- Kool Mild
Kool cigarette advertising began with the character of "Willie" the penguin, who was portrayed as several different professions, among which were a doctor, a soldier and a chef. In the early 1960s, the image of the cartoon penguin was no longer used, and Kool instead began marketing their cigarettes by linking the cool taste of menthol to cool outdoor scenes portraying water or snow. Former Kool Models include Steve Tyler.
In 1971, Kool initiated an advertising campaign where consumers could mail order a Snark sailboat with the Kool logo on the sail — for $88 (later $99) along with one KOOL carton flap — including delivery. The sailboats retailed at the time for $120. As one of KOOL's highest scoring ads, the company received over 18,000 orders for "Sea Snarks" in 1971. The Snark/Kool campaign won a national POPI award (given by the Point of Purchase Institute) as the most creative and inventive ad of 1971. The KOOL Snark promotion was repeated in 1972, adding option payment through charge cards — and again in 1975 for $139.
- Willie the Kool Penguin at Don Markstein's Toonopedia. Archived from the original on April 15, 2015.
- "Kool Asks: Is Your Menthol Cigarette Tasting Flat?". Brandhot.de / Hot Brands, Cool Ads. Archived from the original on October 15, 2014. Retrieved 2010-09-08. In German.
- "Kool Brand History". TobaccoDocuments.org. Archived from the original on July 14, 2014.
Also in 1971, KOOL initiated a self-liquidator campaign whereby consumers were given the opportunity to purchase an 11-foot sailboat with carried KOOL 1ogo and usually sold for $120. Consumers could purchase a "Sea Snark" for $88 and one KOOL canon and flap. The purpose of the offer was to increase the effectiveness of the ad; it was one of KOOL's highest scoring ads and was used again in 1972. KOOL received over 18,000 orders for "Sea Sharks" in 1971. A POP test was conducted in 1971 comparing the "Sea Snark" floor display with a non-liquidator KOOL display. Stores using the ordinary display failed to increase sales enough to justify the $6.00 store payment. KOOL sales re "Sea Snark" display rose enough to more than cover the display payment and cost. KOOL's Sea Snark promotion was repeated in 1972, adding option payment through charge cards. 1975: The Sea Snark offer was repeated in a self-liquidator campaign for $139.Note: Original source uses both "Sea Shark" and "Sea Snark".
- "History of Snark Sailboats". Sailboatstogo.com.