Snoop Dogg's 'Giving Up Smoke' Stunt Was A Complete Disaster

Snoop's viral social media post was revealed to be a plug for a smokeless stove.

On November 16, 2023, an image of rapper and entrepreneur Snoop Dogg was posted to his various official social media accounts. Text on the photo read, "After much consideration & conversation with my family, I've decided to give up smoke. Please respect my privacy at this time." His signature was included at the bottom.

As you can imagine, the internet went up in flames. People on Twitter/X responded with comments like "Bro tweeting like there's been a death in the family" and "Damn, the world is really really coming to an end." On Instagram, the post has nearly 5 million likes. But it turns out there was way more to this seemingly odd declaration than the post(s) would make it seem—and the fallout from what happened afterward is still ongoing.

The Solo Stove controversy, explained

A world in which Snoop Dogg stops smoking weed seems nearly unthinkable, right? Well, the true reveal is that this whole hubbub was just part of a promotional campaign for Solo Stove, a smokeless (get it?) fire pit you can gather around while camping, or cook food with, as it can be outfitted with some accessories and used as a grill. There's even a pizza oven attachment available.

Advertisement

Solo Stove got a lot of attention for the campaign—not to mention 60,000 new social media followers—and AdWeek reports that it even made it to #18 of AdAge's Top 40 Ads of 2023. But despite the brand's successful attention grab, the whole to-do didn't translate into what was most important for the company: actual sales.

Solo Stove’s CEO is now out of a job

The Daily, a trade publication centered around the outdoor industry, reports that CEO John Merris has been replaced by former Vista Outdoor CEO John Metz.

The announcement was made by interim chief financial officer Andrea Tarbox, who said, "While our unique marketing campaigns raised brand awareness of Solo Stove to an expanded and new audience of consumers, it did not lead to the sales lift that we had planned, which, combined with the increased marketing investments, negatively impacted our EBITDA [earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization]." Sounds like booking Snoop cost the brand a lot of money that it didn't make back.

Advertisement

This is interesting because Snoop Dogg usually makes for a pretty good celebrity spokesperson for just about any food, food-adjacent product, or beverage. (I even own his cookbook, From Crook to Cook.) But the connection between his storied affection for marijuana, his insinuation that he'd given it up, and a smokeless outdoor fire pit—it was apparently just too tenuous to translate into profit.

Part of me is also wondering if the timing of the campaign was simply off. Though it was rolled out just over a month before Christmas, the holiday shopping season is a time of fierce competition as every brand fights for shoppers' attention, and it's possible that consumers aren't keeping backyard and outdoor products top of mind during the late fall and early winter season.

Advertisement

Snoop, on the other hand, probably hasn't suffered any repercussions, aside from some mildly annoyed social media followers. There's always the gin and juice business to fall back on. Besides, I have a feeling whatever he's smoking is strong enough to keep any and all stress at bay.

Recommended

Advertisement