How can a company that tells people explicitly not to buy its products survive? That's a question for Philip Morris International Inc., which recently unveiled a campaign to "unsmoke" the world.

The Marlboro maker reports first-quarter earnings on Thursday, giving investors the latest data on just how fast cigarette volumes are falling. With its public push to discourage smoking, Philip Morris isn't fighting that trend. Instead, it's ramping up focus on its IQOS heat-not-burn device, already sold in about 44 countries.

"It makes financial sense because the new business is more sustainable, a better product for consumers. I've never seen where there is a better product for consumers and the company ended up in a worse situation financially," said Chief Operating Officer Jacek Olczak. "IQOS and combustible (cigarette) volumes, they are 100 percent correlated. We're not afraid of cannibalization."