Cigar Aficionado

C.A.O. Gets "Real"

C.A.O. International Inc. wants to make you a star, that is, if you can prove you are real.

The Nashville cigarmaker has launched a nationwide search for its new "Real" ad campaign, which will run in Cigar Aficionado and feature everyday C.A.O. cigar enthusiasts photographed in their normal smoking spots.

C.A.O. has launched a Web site,, where enthusiasts can enter the contest by submitting letters, emails and video. In addition to being part of the advertising campaign, those chosen to represent C.A.O. will receive a year's worth of cigars as well.

"The 'Real' campaign is our way of paying homage to our loyal customers and saying 'thank you' for your ongoing support," said Jon Huber, C.A.O's director of marketing.

The February issue of Cigar Aficionado already includes the first two winners, Paul Dukes of Pennsylvania and Chris Wingo of Nasvhille. In each photograph, the men are smoking a C.A.O. La Traviata cigar, which averaged 90.7 points in a vertical tasting in the November 24, 2009 Cigar Insider.