Cannabis Marketing Tips

cannabis marketing

What are the biggest challenges for Cannabis Marketers?

The legalization of marijuana has opened up a whole new world for cannabis companies.

Exponential growth in the industry continues, with no end in sight. In fact, the US market is conservatively expected to double to $41.5 billion by 2025.

In a dozen states (and counting), you can walk into a store with nothing more than a license and a fistful of cash and select from assorted pre-rolls, vape pens, and THC-laden sweet treats.

Unfortunately, the marketing of cannabis and CBD is still an area that remains untouched because of the regulations in place still.

Cannabis marketing: A 10-thousand foot view

Although the cannabis industry has changed remarkably over the years, marketing remains a serious challenge partly due to industry regulation and legalization.

The good news is that today’s digital age presents cannabis business owners with a number of tactics that they can use to advertise their products and services.

Cannabis has created tons of new opportunities across the country ranging from armored cars to delivery apps, they can be subdivided into the following segments.

Dispensaries

Dispensaries are often small, local businesses with limited marketing budgets looking to drive foot traffic and, ultimately, sales.

They’re like any other brick-and-mortar, but with more red tape and longer lines.

These businesses lean heavily on email and SMS to cross-sell and drive repeat business.

Biggest marketing challenges

  • Raising awareness
  • Local Cannabis SEO
  • Limited ad budgets

CPG

For these businesses, the ability to develop and target an audience across brand-safe digital properties is essential; it’s also a huge challenge.

CPG brands are reliant on second-hand or anecdotal data to determine the efficacy of digital campaigns designed to drive foot traffic in dispensaries that stock their products. 

Biggest marketing challenges

  • Brand awareness
  • Measurement
  • Omnichannel execution

Multi-state operators

These are the large, often publicly traded entities, multi-state operators (colloquially referred to as MSOs).

They require a much more complex omni-channel approach, making them the primary market for cross-channel campaigns, premium digital placements (direct ad buys from national, recognized publishers), and dynamic ad units (video, connected TV, etc.).

Biggest marketing challenges

  • Market penetration during expansion
  • Finding places to spend marketing dollars
  • Compliance (across states)

Develop a Social Media Campaign.

Social media can seem like a minefield for cannabis businesses.

As regulations shift by the day, it’s difficult to know what is okay to post on social and what might get your account banned

Social media should be used to educate your customers (not to push your product).

Brands in cannabis verticals can use Facebook to build a community, promote excellent customer service, or keep clients updated on the latest news and updates.

You can use platforms like Instagram to boost awareness and build a targeted user profile.

A couple of alternatives to explore that focus primarily on cannabis are Leafwire and MjLink.

Both of these are great platforms to network with investors and other cannabis entrepreneurs.

Influencer Marketing.

One of the biggest challenges for any cannabis brand trying to promote their products online are finding influencers who are willing to talk about them.

If you want to work with influencers, start by figuring out who your customers are paying attention to. What topics are they searching for online? Who do they follow on social media? 

Partnering with influencers them will enable you to promote your cannabis brand to a sizable audience.

Fortunately, there are plenty of people who are happy to share their opinions about your brand, You just need to find them first.

The Do NOTS of Cannabis Marketing.

It’s up to you to present a professional brand image and your clients want to see you as a legitimate business, not one that engages in shady practices.

Guidelines for cannabis marketing are continually changing and the worst thing you can do is to not know these regulations on social that will get you banned.

Don’t show cannabis consumption. It’s up to you to present a professional brand image and your clients want to see you as a legitimate business, not one that engages in shady practices.

Dont fall behind on regulations. As laws change, the means by which you can market your cannabis business on social media will change too

Dont Lie or Exaggerate about your products.  Lying about your products or services defeats your purpose and will backfire.

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