Restrictions that surround marijuana marketing such as legal CBD products is the main driving force behind businesses changing their traditional marketing strategies. The good news is that the recent increase of marijuana legalization for both medical use and recreational purposes can lead to incredible growth and profit.
According to Grand View Research, the global value of the legal marijuana market is estimated to reach $66.3 billion by the end of 2025. In 2018 alone, the legal marijuana market in the US surpassed 11.9 billion and is expected to grow at 24.1% CAGR between 2019 and 2025.
Image via CNBC
At the same time, different State laws and strict advertising restrictions on digital and print media are significantly limiting visibility and affecting businesses. Needless to say, the marijuana and cannabis marketing industry demand creative marketing tactics.
If you want to increase sales, improve your brand’s value, and boost awareness about your marijuana and legal cannabis products, here is how you can do that.
Table of Contents
1. Collaborate with Marijuana-Friendly Ad Networks
With the legalization of marijuana, there is a surge of marijuana-friendly ad platforms. Both as a publisher and advertiser, you can grow your traffic with such dedicated advertising platforms.
Are you struggling to promote your marijuana products through social media channels? You should give cannabis ad networks a try. These industry-specific cannabis marketing platforms display ads on recreational dispensaries or medical marijuana on various 420 websites.
Let’s take a look at a few ad networks which accept and publish cannabis related advertisements.
- MANTIS Ads: As one of the leading ad networks for legal marijuana and cannabis products, MANTIS Ads makes it easy to send your message to the right audience. With effective geo-targeted campaigns, it can also help you increase your local visibility.
Image via MANTIS Ads
- ALT ADN: It is a digital cannabis advertising network and marketplace for all legal cannabis and marijuana products. You just need to submit your ads and set your budget and target audience.
Image via ALT ADN
- Traffic Roots: Traffic Roots is a fast-growing legal cannabis ad network that works with publishers to help you get your ad posted on various relevant websites.
Image via Traffic Roots
- RevOffers: RevOffers gives you access to like-minded affiliates, publishers, and influencers who can help boost your brand’s value and attract traffic. It is one of the best medical, recreational, and legal online marijuana marketplaces.
Image via RevOffers
2. Create a Website and an Online Store
According to the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, online searches for marijuana increased by 98% from 2005 to 2017 (partial) with millions of Americans looking for it online.
As soon as Canada legalized marijuana, the North American ecommerce market has embraced online selling of marijuana and related products. It is a great breakthrough in marijuana marketing. Even Shopify allows licensed Canadian sellers to sell cannabis products both in-store and online.
For business in the US, it could be difficult with restrictions on delivery carriers. But if you have legal permission and a license, you can start selling online.
3. Focus on Keywords and SEO Optimization
If you want to sell anything online, you need to identify high-converting keywords and optimize your content to boost traffic and sales.
Our research shows that long-tail keywords can help you boost your search results rankings. You should, therefore, do CBD search engine optimization for your website pages, blog posts, and other online content for relevant long-tail keywords to increase organic search traffic.
Image via HitTail
Long-tail keywords dominate 70% of the total searches on the internet. When coupled with high-quality content, long-tail keywords can dramatically increase your conversion rate with an all-time high organic reach.
4. Write Guest Posts
Guest posting can prove to be one of the best marijuana marketing tactics to get immediate exposure to your target audience. This can help you increase brand awareness, build trust, and boost sales.
You should look for popular websites and magazines that allow you to write on topics related to medical marijuana and cannabis products. Guest posting on popular niche websites can help you strengthen your backlink profile, improve search rankings, boost traffic and leads, and achieve a higher ROI.
You can search online for credible sites that allow guest posting on marijuana and related products. Before you approach them for guest posting, you should always the site’s contributor guidelines and requirements.
Here are a few sites that accept guest posts on topics related to marijuana:
You should develop an effective guest posting strategy for your business. Then, you should focus on creating informative posts that list the benefits of marijuana with proof. You can use research studies and statistics to validate the information.
Publishing well-researched content on popular websites can help you level up your marijuana marketing game.
5. Leverage Influencers
There’s no denying that influencer marketing can help you grow your brand’s value in no time. But to boost your ROI, you need to identify and partner with the right influencers for your marijuana marketing campaigns.
The most difficult part is to find an appropriate cannabis influencer who can help you reach a larger and targeted audience. You can collaborate with them for affiliate marijuana or cannabis marketing to increase sales and ensure long-term profits.
6. Focus on Educating Readers
We discussed in our previous article on cannabis marketing that educating readers and viewers is more effective than selling.
Not many people are aware of the benefits of marijuana. You should take the lead and spread awareness.
You can plan and craft an educational content calendar on marijuana-related topics. This should include ideas for blog posts, social media content, and visual content.
Some of the topics you can explore include:
- Growing marijuana
- Different strains of marijuana
- Benefits of marijuana
- What to look for when buying marijuana
- Different types of marijuana and cannabis products
Educational content can help you get people to see you as authentic and credible. It can help you build trust and grow an engaged audience for your business.
7. Get Creative with Instagram and Pinterest Accounts
As the traditional social media marketing approach does not help much in marijuana marketing, you should get creative with Instagram and Pinterest marketing.
I strongly recommend that you plan your visual content well. You should create and post impressive images, infographics, gifographics, and videos with appropriate hashtags. Informative write-ups go really well with graphics that have minimal text.
Here’s an example:
Image via Instagram
You can also consider posting images of marijuana-themed t-shirts, cups, mugs, hats, and backpacks. Adding such product images on both Instagram and Pinterest can help you generate more traffic for your website.
Image via Pinterest
However, you should refrain from directly selling marijuana products on Instagram and Pinterest. The platforms don’t accept direct links to marijuana ecommerce sites, online stores, or product selling pages.
You can add links to your blog posts and other educational content. You should also mention a disclaimer that says you aren’t attempting to sell anything and only legal age-group viewers are allowed on your site.
8. Target Local Market
Targeting local markets can give your brand immediate visibility at a lower cost.
While designing a website is crucial to driving traffic and sales, it is equally important for you to grab the local market in marijuana legalized states.
Here is what you can do for local marijuana marketing:
- Get ahold of a low-cost advertiser. Unlike high-value printing and online advertisers, local media can offer you competitive prices and help you reach interested buyers.
- Contact non-mainstream media that isn’t selective about their ads.
- Advertising on a billboard may seem expensive and outdated, but it can help you attract a crowd that matters for your business. But you should be careful about where you place your ad and what message it shares.
- Get yourself listed on Google as a local business. People who want to look for marijuana products locally will easily spot your shop in search results.
Image via Google
9. Use Radio Advertisements
Advertising on the radio is another option for marijuana or cannabis marketing. Various broadcasting platforms are accepting pot ads these days.
You can choose the radio station based on their audience demographics. This will help you run more targeted campaigns. It’s said that consumers need to hear marijuana ads thrice for a greater impact.
However, depending on your state laws and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), you may also find it difficult to advertise on radio stations. In that case, you could use satellite radio ads.
The best thing about satellite radio is that it does not come under the radar of the FCC because it is not considered a broadcasting medium. Satellite radio advertising is cheaper too.
10. Event Marketing
Marijuana marketing at events may seem like a lot of hard work but it is great fun. Event marketing gives you a chance to connect with brands, vendors, weed entrepreneurs, and of course, buyers.
When you consider investing in event marketing, try not to limit yourself to booths. You should also get out there and meet enthusiasts, speak to them, and try to build relationships. Most importantly, you should spread the message about your event through social networks.
Q1. How can I legally market CBD?
A. The first rule when marketing CBD products legally is not to make scientifically unproven statements or those not supported by FDA guidelines. Avoid selling them as dietary supplements or claiming that they can diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent serious diseases.
However, you can legally market CBD products through:
- Organic search. Include phrases or keywords with high search volume in your content and ads to drive traffic and rank your site.
- Partner with CBD influencers to help drive awareness, traffic, and conversions.
- Run CBD affiliate programs.
- Familiarize yourself with state or country guidelines in your area when advertising.
Q2. Who is the target market for CBD products?
A. According to research, all generations use CBD products, but the most prevalent users are millennials. They constitute the larger share of the overall market but have less spend than their counterparts in other generations.
Additionally, different generations prefer different products. For example, the silent generation prefers tinctures, while baby boomers, millennials, and generation X mostly use the flower. Generation Z, on the other hand, mostly prefers using vape pens and cartridges.
In terms of gender, men make up the largest share of CBD sales compared to women.
Q3. Is marijuana traded on the stock market?
A. Yes, it is.
And as more states and countries legalize it, the number of marijuana stocks continues rising.
Q4. How big is the marijuana market?
A. It’s big.
By 2020, the cannabis market value was 12.87 billion USD, with market researchers expecting it to reach 30.52 billion USD by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 13%.
Q5. What will be the future of the marijuana industry?
A. The following are some things you can expect to happen in the marijuana industry:
- Attitudes about marijuana will continue to change, leading to more sales.
- The legalization movement will continue as more states and countries legalize the growing and possession of the plant.
- There will be more cannabis strains as breeders seek to satisfy a growing target audience. There will also be more varieties of edibles and cannabis-infused beverages.
- The diversity of customers will grow as more of the silent generation and baby boomers accept marijuana for medicinal and recreational use.
- Consumers will have more knowledge of the benefits of marijuana.
- Studies on the cannabis compounds will continue as researchers seek to find more medicinal properties they can synthesize to produce better drugs.
Q6. Are there any health benefits from marijuana?
A. The most common health benefits of marijuana use include:
- Reducing chronic pain
- Treatment of nausea for chemotherapy patients
- Stimulating appetite
- Treating neuropathic pains brought on by multiple sclerosis
- Treating severe cases of childhood epilepsy
However, continued use of these drugs for treatment can lead to THC-induced cognitive impairment and adverse health effects due to smoking. There’s also little research on the long-term effects of marijuana use on people with age or health-related vulnerabilities.
Q7. How to market your cannabis business?
A. You can use the following strategies when marketing your cannabis business:
- Leverage marijuana-friendly ad networks like Mantis, Traffic Roots, RevOffers, etc.
- Build an online store and website for your brand.
- Optimize keywords for SEO.
- Partner with influencers.
- Guest post.
- Provide answers on forums and Q&A sites.
- Educate your readers.
- Creatively post informative content on platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram.
- Focus on local markets.
- Advertise on the radio.
- Leverage events to market your brand.
Q8. How to grow your cannabis brand with digital marketing?
A. Although you cannot advertise your cannabis products on most social media sites, there are strategies you can leverage to grow your brand. These include:
- Post organic content consistently on social media channels and leverage branded and popular hashtags.
- Offer customer service across all channels.
- Offer exclusive deals.
- Engage and respond to customer questions and comments.
- Have a link in your bio on Instagram and a call-to-action button on Facebook.
- Partner with influencers for user-generated content and word-of-mouth marketing.
- Use branded hashtags to generate UGC. Leverage prizes and giveaways that encourage your target audience to share your brand with friends.
- Incorporate video into your social and content marketing strategy. Use it to showcase your market expertise.
- Start a podcast or get featured on a popular cannabis podcast.
Q9. Why is marijuana suddenly being legalized in America and elsewhere?
A. It’s not been a sudden act.
However, America and other countries legalizing marijuana have realized its benefits, mainly from the media framing the plant as medicinal.
The marijuana’s black market also continues to grow to non-repressible proportions. And for most governments, it’s no longer a question of whether to make cannabis available but whether to make its use and production legal.
Additionally, it’s very easy to smuggle marijuana, and states with tight restrictions on marijuana now face flooding problems from those with loose restrictions.
Q10. How much money do the marijuana dispensaries make?
A. Considering that two in every five Americans use marijuana in some form, well-established dispensaries have over a thousand loyal clients. Annual sales could go up to $10 million for such businesses.
On the other hand, non-established dispensaries and those in remote locations can make close to $3 million.
Marijuana marketing is not as difficult as it seems. And you can level up your marketing strategies with a pinch of creativity to grow your business.
Can you think of any other effective marijuana or cannabis marketing strategies? We would really appreciate your insights in the comments below.