2021 has set new rules for marketers and entrepreneurs around the globe. The competition is as high as ever, and so are the stakes. Companies are bending over backward to enhance their visibility, but one particular industry has been especially struggling with marketing — cannabis startups.
In this blog, we’ll discuss the most important trends to pay attention to in 2021. Taking these trends into consideration when developing your strategy for tackling the year will be crucial to making the most of it.
Cannabis Advertising trends to pay attention to in 2021:
Look Out For Omni-Channel Marketing Strategies And Better Product Designs
Consumers and upgraded retail stores demand upgraded product and packaging design with a high perceived value. Brands must recognize the changes in the landscape and evolve with it.
Updated calendars, which include activations at non-cannabis-focused events, will become the norm.
Give Cannabis Affiliate Marketing a Shot
As you can tell, marketing cannabis businesses is one heck of a challenge. Although marijuana is legal for medical and recreational purposes in most states and provinces, it’s still banned on a federal level.
Find marijuana-friendly networks that present ads on a wide range of websites where prospects can notice your company and, most importantly, where it’s not against the law. Moreover, they are specifically made to promote CBD (cannabidiols or chemical substances in marijuana) products.
Keep it Local
Local advertising is essential when it comes to marketing cannabis and CBD products. Advertisers often run into legal issues while advertising their products in outlawed states. This essentially means the safest approach is to offer hyper-focused and hyperlocal advertising. Partnering with local dispensaries, growers, and other local members of the cannabis industry will create brand awareness. Collaborating with local partners can lead to a mutually shared brand campaign, which in turn affects your brand credibility and visibility.
Launch an SEO-Optimized Website and Online Store
If things don’t work out with marijuana-friendly websites, create your own! When it comes to cannabis shopping, North America is all ears for it. Thanks to Canada’s legalization of marijuana, the number of online searches has increased tremendously over the last decade. Why not take advantage of it? Create a website and an online store.
We suggest optimizing your SEO strategy and search top, legit keywords related to cannabis marketing to make the most of your website. They’ll send your site to the first page of Google, make your company more visible, and eventually attract high-quality leads.
Fun fact: most people still either consider marijuana “dope” or are indifferent to it whatsoever. That being said, can you see how crucial it is for your online cannabis marketing strategy to inform your leads about marijuana usage? One way to do it is through a blog.
Share some practical life hacks for buying cannabis. You could write about the stages of growing CBD, its various strains, and the differences between them. Incorporate statistics and study results to gain your readers’ trust.
To keep track of your content, it’s helpful to get a calendar to plan your posting schedule. After a while, you’ll be able to look back at the work you’ve done and see just how efficient the blog has been for your business.
And don’t forget about guest posting! That’s a massive part of marketing that cannabis businesses shouldn’t neglect. Attracting new audiences, providing helpful info, and giving a few links to your website to drive traffic — sounds appealing, right? However, don’t submit your guest posts blindly, and search for websites and magazines that allow (and encourage) content on cannabis-related topics. Before contacting them, though, it’s better to check the company’s guidelines. What do they write about? What are their dos and don’ts? You have to know what you’re dealing with.
In the guest articles, mention your brand’s name and be SEO-oriented. This means two ideas: your posts have to be easy to find and convenient to read.
Focus on the Visuals and Reels
While keeping a blog is a pretty efficient part of cannabis marketing, you may also want to focus on the visual aspect. Prospects often take photos and videos better than longreads — our brains are wired to skip monotonous info and choose what’s more appealing to the eye. That’s precisely why Instagram and Pinterest are such giants in the social media world.
You are effectively utilizing Reels to ignite organic Instagram exposure. Showcase your dispensary’s products. Let users be a part of your cannabrand’s staff, or engagingly release new products and services with Instagram Reels.
Collaborate with Thought Leaders
Leads always trust people more than digital ads. A thought leader with an impeccable reputation and a loyal audience will often bring you more prospects than a paid campaign — influencer marketing has long proved it. So why not give it a shot?
Yes, finding the right person to work with your online cannabis marketing campaign isn’t a walk in the park. But the results will be well worth it. Take time to research prominent influencers in the marijuana industry. Think about famous bloggers, journalists, and other trendsetters.
Brands Must Be Cannabis Educators
With so many products, brands, and regulations in the market, one of the most effective strategies to differentiate yourself is to be the trusted advisor for cannabis education. There are hundreds of topics to cover, from how cannabis is grown to properly roll a joint and the laws in your local area.
Using this strategy, you become a generous brand focused on educating overselling, building credibility and visibility, and becoming the go-to source for clients entering the cannabis market.
Become a Sponsor
Your ultimate goal will always be to build your community, but who said you couldn’t leverage prospects from existing audiences? Sponsoring other cannabis-related businesses’ endeavors and media might be one of the most acceptable tactics in attracting new clients. It’s a win-win for your startup and the other party.
How to sponsor? First things first, find a decent company for your cannabis affiliate marketing. Through direct negotiation (as it often happens), you’ll be able to discuss the ins and outs of the process. Now, what media should you sponsor?
Here are a few options:
Podcasts are a top-rated medium in 2021. People listen to them on their way to work, while doing chores, and just for fun. Sponsoring cannabis-friendly podcasts can bring you high-quality leads and significantly boost your traffic.
As the cannabis industry is reaching new heights, various applications are breaking into the market. Efficiently marketing new cannabis apps through sponsorship is a gain situation for both parties: the application’s creators (you help them financially, which shows that you give them enough credit) and your company (they advertise your brand). Cannabis affiliate marketing, baby!
YouTube is an integral part of the whole marketing cannabis thing. There are countless marijuana-friendly YouTube channels to work with. As a sponsor, you may have your brand name, products, and merch mentioned in the video or have a short clip about your company play at the beginning. Partner with a respected cannabis-related channel and watch your charts go up.
Local Events / Virtual Events
Sponsoring a community event is a great chance to build a location-specific audience. Are there any local fairs, giveaways, or meetups planned in your area? Contact the moderators and offer sponsorship. You never know how many prospects you’ll end up attracting from such an occasion, but your cannabis performance-based marketing program will surely benefit from it. Even Virtual events have become a trend now. Due to the Pandemic, events have moved to online platforms and have generated massive footfalls for companies across industries.
Try Event Marketing
When it comes to promoting unconventional products like cannabis, communication is critical. You have to go out there, be bold and make a statement about your company. This is how event advertising works.
Marketing cannabis at events may seem frightening, but in fact, it’s just connecting with people and telling them about your startup. There’s plenty of marketing events to join as an exhibitor. Just find a marijuana-oriented event, research influential people you know would help you grow your business, and tell them about your company.
Work on an Email Marketing Campaign
Users that subscribed to your mailing list are either your former, active, or potential customers. We want to emphasize this: these are the people who voluntarily typed in their contact information to receive your emails. Are you going to deprive their inboxes of engaging content (the same goes for the cannabis outreach emails)?
Provide your current and potential customers with valuable and personalized compilations, articles, check-lists, empirical data on marijuana-related products, caveats — basically, any info they might find interesting. Analyze your website statistics and check the user journey. What do your potential leads look at on your website? Use this info to reinforce your cannabis email marketing strategy and make the message super relevant.
Partner with Cannabis-Friendly Businesses
Create a mutual product that reflects both businesses’ strong points. Or display the other company’s logo on a batch of your products and have them likewise demonstrate yours. Hosting a webinar together or efficiently marketing new cannabis apps will work too. The options are limitless.
Bring your crew together to brainstorm on this once you’ve found a complementary brand to team up with. Such partnership will display your brand as innovative and friendly in the eyes of your prospects.
Pandemic dynamics are creating a surge in CTV supply
Streaming content on OTT devices rose significantly from 44 million households per month to over 300 million per month during the pandemic, and consumption has remained at this high degree ever since. Growth in demand has created an overall increase in supply, while traditional advertiser demand is still waning. The confluence of supply increases and demand decreases creates an opportunity for cannabis brands to reach consumers on the large screen at scale and more efficiently.
Staying on top of this rapidly changing industry isn’t easy, but if you pay attention to the advertising trends, it’ll make it a lot easier to do. From the demand for high levels of THC in strains and concentrates, to eCommerce and delivery, to legalization, increased sales, and a growing diversity of customers, these trends will be important to make the most out of 2021 in the cannabis industry.
How to find your dream role in Cannabis Industry?
The Cannabis Industry is hiring. Keep a note that applying for jobs in the cannabis industry is similar to what transpires in other sectors. Be passionate about the product, curious to learn, know the industry and stay agile. If you follow the tips mentioned above, it is sure that there is a Cannabis job waiting for you. All you have to do is to submit your profile at CanMar recruitment.