The stockings are hung, the tree decorated, and the fireplace is ready for stoking, so all that’s left is to compile our e-cigarette Christmas wish list… this one being for the electronic cigarette industry as a whole. Listen up big companies and small, pioneers and rookies, cash-infused powerhouses or strapped start-ups: we want more from you in 2014.

True, you have taken this phenomenal little product from the infancy of Hon Lik’s first nicotine-based patent to a global industry with sales figures on track to overtake traditional cigarettes within a couple decades, but that just isn’t enough for consumers craving more. Nor should it be! We’re calling out the entire industry to take that next leap forward.We urge you to be innovators, not imitators!

2013 was a big year for vaping and e-cigarettes seeing unpredictable growth in the market.

Our Christmas wish list for the electronic cigarette industry in 2014:

Better Technology. Beginning in approximately 2008, a few forward-thinking companies (Green Smoke, Blu, and others) took e-cig technology a big leap forward with a new cig-a-like design: the two-piece electronic cigarette. This design has been tinkered with and updated to get the most out of it, but is there something truly revolutionary on the horizon, perhaps something that we’ll be able to get our hands on in 2014? As the old adage goes; what have you done for me lately?

Over a year ago Green Smoke unveiled their awesome line of FlavorMax cartomizers, while Blu introduced their rechargeable pack in the summer of 2013 to much fanfare. Since then, companies like Apollo and South Beach Smoke have closed the gap with better cartomizers and rechargeable cases of their own. Who will be the next company to lead the industry forward with new technology and force the rest of the pack to make their move to catch up? This is a question that keeps us up at night here at ECCR. That and too much coffee of course 😉

The success of the tank mods has proven that e-cigarette users appreciate better technology and are willing to spend premium prices on it.

More Unique Flavors. Right now there are some killer flavors out there that we truly love, mostly from the e-cig brands we rate the highest. But no matter how much you love a t-bone steak, you can’t have that every night without getting bored. How about some rump roast? Variety is the spice of life and we want that in our e-cigarette flavors too.

For those that made the move to fill your e-cig with your own e-liquids, like the ones put out by Halo, you have a leg up in terms of options. But for those sticking to the major cig-a-like brands, we just don’t seem to get enough variety. I imagine most cig-a-like e-cig users reading this are nodding along here (can I get an amen?!?). We understand new flavors are a risk because not all of them will be a hit, but we want you to take some risks in 2014. Keep us tantalized and coming back for more!

Just like anything we do everyday, we want variety and vaping is no exception, vapers have proven that the demand for a larger assortment of flavors is something they appreciate.

More Advertising. This one may surprise you. “But I get bombarded with advertisements for e-cigs all the time when I surf the internet!” you say. This isn’t exactly what we are talking about here. We don’t mean more sale advertisements or lame video spots (we aren’t one to name names…). What we need is more information reaching the eyes and ears of the public.

An official survey from the Center for Disease Control earlier this year estimated that a full 80% of smokers have never tried an e-cigarette. That’s a huge segment of society that could have their lives changed if they only knew more about electronic cigarettes, enough to give them a try at least. So go on guys, get the word out. We may love your products already, but we don’t want to keep this innovative creation all to ourselves. Share the wealth, and you can start by sharing as much information as possible with the public about your product and let the court of public opinion decide if electronic cigarettes are right for them.

While e-cigs were effectively advertised early on, once they caught on, regulations limited it leaving many smokers to wonder whether this was due to health risks.

Increased Corporate Responsibility. That brings us to the last item on our industry Christmas wish list. Corporate responsibility starts with what we mentioned above, sharing as much information as possible. Be as transparent as you can so consumers can get a sense of confidence from you by knowing that your product is tested and is held up to high standards (V2’s online e-liquid batch testing reports come to mind). Once you get there, don’t stop.

Corporate responsibility also means you join or back the movements and organizations (such as TVECA) fighting to get the word out and keep e-cigarettes available widely available. Of course it can also mean smaller initiatives, like starting an e-cig recycling program. Be part of the electronic cigarette community as a whole, like we are, and don’t just settle for making a few bucks off of us e-cig users.

As the vaping industry is mostly made up of smaller business people, their success is seen as a call for more corporate responsibility as tobacco companies scrambled to get their share of the revenue.

Well, there you have it. Our Christmas wish list for the electronic cigarette industry is short and sweet, but also near and dear to our hearts. We are obviously huge fans of e-cigs and likewise of the number of brands that put out wonderful products. But being fans also means we have the consumer responsibility of asking demanding more. We challenge all brands to make 2014 the year to turn things up a notch. The great thing is that revolutionary ideas can come from anywhere, so even newcomers and smaller operations with limited cash can strike upon that next phenomenal change in the industry. A new year is right around the corner, so enjoy your eggnog and winter wonderland for now, but then get geared up to pull off those moves that’ll make 2014 the finest year yet for electronic cigarettes and their many fans!

Ho ho ho