Cannabis marketing is psychology, human nature, and education.
Effectively communicating your brand to your target demographic takes a keen sense of people skills and a watchful eye on trends in the industry.
The cannabis industry is unique because there is no guide on how it’s supposed to be done.
This is both a good and a bad thing.
The bad news is that you can’t ride anyone else’s wave into success.
The good news is that because the market is so new, you are more able now than ever to create and ride your own wave.
As Capitol Compliance Management celebrates our anniversary as a leading cannabis marketing and consulting agency, we’ve compiled a list of what not to do when looking into doing your own cannabis marketing.
Mistake 1: Making assumptions about your customers
While you may have an image of a stereotypical cannabis user, that archetype is no longer. When creating a marketing strategy, you must do your research to find out important demographic information that correlates to the people attracted to your brand’s style, the people found in the surrounding area, and even how pop culture is affecting unexpected customer bases.
For example, a study conducted to analyze 10,000 user responses in California found that among the cannabis consumers:
91% of respondents hold a full-time job
32% of respondents were female, with 59% of those females consuming every day.
51% of respondents hold a degree or postgraduate degree
49% of respondents have an annual household income exceeding $75,000
In the past, when cannabis was only traded on the black market, the flower sold itself. But now, the market is becoming more and more competitive. To stand out, your brand needs a voice, and that’s exactly what blogging enables. But blogging isn’t just an amazing way to directly connect with your consumers; it’s also an incredibly effective strategy to fuel SEO (read Mistake 3 if you think this doesn’t matter).
According to a study by HubSpot, businesses with blogs receive 67% more leads than those that do not. The same study concluded that businesses who blog consistently are 13x more likely to enjoy positive ROI.
The only thing blogs cost you are your time, but in the end, it’s safe to say that it quite literally pays off.
Mistake 3: Ignoring SEO
Q: Where’s the best place to hide a dead body? A: On the second page of Google, because no one looks there.
Understanding the limitations and capabilities of popular search engines like Google, and making them work in favor of your business, is what SEO is all about. Without SEO, the search engines are unable to figure out what your website is about and they don’t know how to rank it properly.
Google receives over 63,000 searches per second on any given day, and your consumers want to feel in control of their own consuming research. Placing a high ranking on Google and having great SEO will still make them feel in control, and that they’re not being marketed to, all while placing your business in the perfect place, virtually, to attract customers.
Utilizing SEO is the stealthiest way to gain customers without blatant advertising.
Mistake 4: Not being strategic about social media
What sets your shop or brand apart from the competition? Anyone can take a picture of a bud of flower and post it with the caption #420blazeit, but is that truly serving your business? Business owners in the cannabis industry often believe that because social media is accessible to anyone, that it must be easy to make it work for you.
That is far from the truth.
To be effective on social media, you need to be strategic. This means planning and scheduling content ahead of time, staying up-to-date on trends in the industry, and always channeling, and staying consistent with, your brand voice.