The cannabis industry is an ever-changing landscape. Despite making progressive strides towards decriminalizing the drug and legalizing adult-use recreational consumption, as well as making medical marijuana more accessible to patients in need, there is still a stigma associated with the plant. Although we are already in a more modern age where more and more people are becoming aware of the benefits that cannabis use can bring, there are still those who resist such changes.
Because of these, it cannot be denied that marketing a cannabis business can be quite challenging. While the drug has certainly been around for ages, the industry, its regulations, and the like, are still relatively new. As such, this makes it an uphill battle for cannabis businesses who wish to permeate the field and make a difference with the products and services they provide.
This leaves entrepreneurs with the question of how to go about their cannabis marketing strategies. As an important aspect for businesses, this poses risks and opens up more difficulties for those who are just beginning their journey. While there are current limitations to advertising, which will further be discussed later on in the article, there are still effective ways to work around in 2021.
In this article, we will be tackling some of the major concerns in the marijuana marketing industry and how one can move past such roadblocks. Take a look at the following below.
What Marijuana Businesses Need to Consider
Before diving deeper into the strategies one brand or business should take, learning about what cannabis entrepreneurs need to consider when making a move in the industry. This way, they know how to properly navigate and plan their approach. Below are three major considerations they need to take in mind.
Be Aware of Existing Marijuana Advertising Laws
As we have mentioned earlier, the cannabis industry is still relatively new. Because of this, the guidelines and regulations are constantly being changed not only on a local level, but also from a national standpoint. These differences present quite the battle for those who are looking to launch and market their products in the field.
State regulations differ from federal rules. This makes it more challenging to navigate, especially when there are stricter and more conservative landscapes compared to others. For example, in Colorado, the very first state to legalize marijuana, Dash Two states that there are still restrictions when it comes to advertising. Some of these include having no outdoor signs of any kind to advertise cannabis businesses and products. The same restriction applies to leaflets being handed out to customers. Colorado is also strict will mobile advertisements as well as ads on the Internet and other mass-market websites.
California currently has the largest economy where cannabis is legalized. Despite this, the state still holds some regulations for certain avenues. For instance, digital advertisements, as well as those for television, print, and radio can only be run provided the majority of the viewers or the public is 21 years old and over, with at least 71.6% of the audience of legal age. Apart from this, California also bans marketing tactics such as using cartoon characters or other similar imagery as this can send the wrong message.
From this, one can see that the laws in these two states are already drastically different from one another. To prevent your company from violating any laws, make sure to conduct prior research not only within the state jurisdiction your business is in, but also existing national laws that might affect your venture.
Do Not Highlight Cannabis Consumption
Cannabis consumption, or rather, the overconsumption of this drug, can send a different type of message. Veer away from promoting consumption of marijuana on your website or on your social media profiles. Various brands have had to learn this lesson the hard way. To be on the safe side, do not forget to accompany your ads with warnings associated with the consumption of the said product.
To be on the safer side, businesses will do more good for their brand by providing insightful and educational pieces that highlight the benefits of cannabis. This way, you can help fight the stigma against marijuana, and by extension, direct good feedback and promote your image in a better light.
Forego the Ads
While cannabis marketing without the ads might seem counterintuitive to what your brand or company is trying to achieve, what we are trying to say is to stay away from social media platforms and even Google. Most campaigns run on the search engine are taken down if they do not abide by the rules and regulations set by the particular platform.
To help you navigate the complex world of advertising and ensure that your ads are not taken down, nor will your efforts go to waste, consider hiring a cannabis marketing agency. Most of the time, as is the case with Washington, running ads and promoting videos on Google ads is possible provided these are coursed through agencies. These professionals are equipped not only with a creative and legal team, they are most likely well versed in the different requirements posed by various platforms, making them ideal to handle your account.
Effective Strategies for Your Cannabis Business
Now that some of the considerations are out of the way, it is high time to delve deeper into the strategies marijuana businesses can take in order to help their companies flourish not just throughout this year, but through the coming years as well. Take a look at some of these methods.
Using a Cannabis SEO Approach
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a great marketing tactic for cannabis businesses. This goes with the idea that brands no longer have to spend much on advertising and instead, channel their approach on a digital scale that will allow them to rank first or even high up on search engines such as Google.
SEO has the capacity to drive organic traffic to your company website, especially when compared to paid ads. In turn, this also promotes conversions, allowing your company to prosper organically. After all, a strong digital presence in this technological age is essential for just about any business. This approach allows customers and target audiences to find your cannabis website and products.
SEO and content marketing can boost your rankings and generate new leads. What’s more, this can also establish your authority in the field while also ensuring you gain the trust and attention of consumers.
One way to make engaging content that employs effective search engine optimization strategies is to conduct keyword research and incorporate these into blog posts, white papers, and the like. Doing so allows your business to seamlessly find its way to promoting your desired content while still providing answers and insights to what people are looking for on the web.
While optimization with marijuana SEO is still a gray area in the cannabis industry, this does not mean that dispensaries, manufacturers, and other companies in the field should shy away from optimizing their respective websites and pages.
For those who want their sites to be seen by more audience, they should take the time to make sure their website is user-friendly and is accessible on various devices. Brands should also take the time to carefully craft content that incorporate target keywords while taking on a more educational route.
Explore Cannabis Backlinks
Backlinks are a different type of content breed. While still an offshoot of SEO, in that it also gears its efforts into increasing your marijuana business’ authority and rank in search engines, this also promotes trust and relationships between the community. More importantly, it allows businesses to establish their domain authority.
To start off with this cannabis backlinks journey, start by investing in a premium directly listing. Most of the time, these provide users of the website or the listing with a high volume of traffic. These online directors link back to your website and what you offer, giving users and potential clients a peep at what your marijuana business does.
Establishing a Cannabis Business Social Network
Companies can establish and strengthen their cannabis business social network by leveraging the power of social media. Although many social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and the like, are still banning certain types of cannabis-related content and marketing materials, this does not mean that businesses should not utilize these spaces for their advantage.
Besides SEO, social media is one of the advertising modes that reign supreme. In many ways, posting on these platforms not only let companies and brands alike to use keywords and hashtags that help boost their SEO rankings, but these also serve as a means for marijuana firms and businesses to connect directly with their audience.
Social media is also the perfect tool for widening their social network. In addition to becoming a cesspool of content where users freely contribute how and when they use cannabis products, businesses can use these to reshare images and content on their own pages, ushering in more growth and awareness.
The Bottom Line
These are just some of the marijuana marketing strategies that businesses in the field can take to help take their endeavors to new heights. Through these approaches, you can not only grow your audience, you can also take on more creative means that will help your company stand out from the crowd.