12 Cutting-Edge Marijuana Marketing Tactics That Work

12 Cutting-Edge Marijuana Marketing Tactics That Work

Remember when cannabis ads showed up in our social media feeds, and then, in what seemed like five minutes later, Facebook/Instagram and Google/YouTube began shutting companies down for posting them? A California company called Grasshopper Kiosks makes digital vending machines for dispensaries that carry anything from pre-rolls to beverages and include refrigeration to keep the product fresh. American Green also makes vending machines that deliver cannabis products. With a good location and great creative, billboard advertising can be a highly visible home run. And there are plenty of advertising agencies and media companies that can help you place your creative. Becoming a sponsor at a cannabis trade how like the Cannabis World Congress and Business Expo (CWCBE) of MJBizCon (might top 20,000 visitors this year) is easy and effective. Create Your Own Event Not for the faint of heart, but if you want to go where few marketers dare, create your own branded event that shows the market who’s boss. Don’t forget to hire photographers, videographers, and social media posters to put your gig on blast. Savvy brands sponsored the gig and showed off their graphics and goodies to thousands of very happy cannabis. When edited to its minimalist-best, this little gem can be shared via text, posted on YouTube, Vimeo, giphy.com, posted on your website, on a digital ad network like Traffic Roots (above), in your blog, emailed to your mom… on your social media (though as above, F&G might smush you).

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Restrictions on cannabis advertising are pushing companies to find creative ways to reach consumers.

12 Cutting-Edge Marijuana Marketing Tactics That Work

Opinions expressed by Green Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Changes in the cannabis industry are occurring at light speed, and perhaps none so fast as in the marketing space. Remember when cannabis ads showed up in our social media feeds, and then, in what seemed like five minutes later, Facebook/Instagram and Google/YouTube began shutting companies down for posting them?

The very nature of marketing is changing, too. Usually it takes a creative marketing strategy to get a company noticed. But in cannabis industry, where The Man is always one step behind, those battles have to be won at the tactical level. Where you deliver your message is just as important as what you say. Here are some real-world examples of killer marketing placements that work.

1. Advertise on a Vending Machine

In the future, there will be vending machines for weed. Wait, what’s that? The future is now. A California company called Grasshopper Kiosks makes digital vending machines for dispensaries that carry anything from pre-rolls to beverages and include refrigeration to keep the product fresh. The hi-res video touch-screens are perfect for advertising your brand on the interactive screen. Or you can wrap the entire machine with your branding. American Green also makes vending machines that deliver cannabis products.

2. Find an Ad Network That’s Weed Friendly

Far from conducting “digital raids” like Facebook and Google, there are a few advertising networks that actually want your cannabis company display ads, and have robust platforms that allow both publishers and advertisers to serve them up. Traffic Roots has burst on the scene with an online control panel that’s so simple to use, you can literally turn the dials of your advertising revenues and costs, and soon will enable your cannabis company ads to appear on mainstream sites, broadening the opportunity immensely. Another ad network, Mantis focuses on geo-targeting (“local advertising made simple”). In digital advertising, make sure to inquire about retargeting ads – the ones that seem to follow users from site to site.

3. Invest in a Broadway Show

While the mainstream world has been slow to arrive at the cannabis party, plenty of entertainment brands are right out in front of it. Right now, Netflix users can choose between double-digit cannabis-themed movies, series, and documentaries. Sorry, you can’t advertise on Netflix (though you could buy its stock and post about it). But if you want your brand seen by a huge, canna-appreciative audience, you can invest in the Broadway-bound production of “Reefer Madness – The Musical” (use the link to get more information). What bigger, bolder marketing statement could there be than a wildly entertaining Broadway musical “brought to you by…?

4. Buy a Billboard

Some of the most memorable advertising in history happened up on the roof. Who can forget the “Think Different” campaign by America’s first trillion-dollar brand — Apple? With a good location and great creative, billboard advertising can be a highly visible home run. And there are plenty of advertising agencies and media companies that can help you place your creative. Challenges are: in legal cannabis states like California, there are strict limitations on what you can show. Placing your brand high above the chimney tops can run you from $2K per month in Spokane to $100K per month above Hollywood’s Sunset Strip. But hey, advertising wisdom says three impressions locks a message in your mind, so if tens of thousands of potential customers smile…

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