The use of medicinal marijuana is now legal in over half of the United States. Hemp-derived cannabidiol or CBD is legal in all 50 states, as long as the THC level falls under 0.3 percent. As perception surrounding cannabis products shift, so do habits. The use of cannabis for medical purposes is growing in popularity.
In a 2019 study, adults with medical conditions that belonged to the age bracket of 18 – 24, more than 25 percent of survey respondents reported using cannabis as a regular treatment method. Within the cannabis market, and the healthcare community, there is a growing wave that both medical practitioners and patients are looking for less addictive, more effective treatment methods for chronic conditions. Especially as younger generations begin to make up more of the consumer market, medical marijuana is expected to play a larger role in healthcare treatment.
So how do you best market this growing product and reach that target market? We’ve identified three tactics that are the most stress-free and ROI driving measures that worked for our current cannabis clients.
First, Let’s Talk About Education
In all your marketing it is important for medical marijuana businesses to express themselves in a respected, authoritative manner. Medicine is a science, it serves to better the physical, mental, and emotional health of humans. Therefore, marketing that undercuts this stance with stigma related messaging not only comes off childish but also untrustworthy.
As cannabis works to shed its centuries-old skin, modern industry leaders must continue to exhibit how the drug is a lifestyle choice for recreational use and a useful alternative in the medical field.
Thus, as a medical marijuana business, you should ensure that your marketing efforts illustrate how cannabis should be taken seriously as an alternative for a variety of current treatments, such as prescription medication. With cannabis products being explored to help treat the symptoms of a variety of conditions such as Chron’s disease, glaucoma, epilepsy, and more, it is important to avoid making outright healing claims associated with the drug.
Not Acceptable: Marijuana will heal your multiple sclerosis.
Acceptable: Medically dosed cannabis-products may help relax muscle tightness in some patients.
Consumers have consistently shown over the past decade to reward good-quality content. Medical marijuana, and cannabis as a whole, are topics that are being highly researched by the consumer market. With the search volume behind it, cannabis-specific content can help businesses reach audience groups.
- Organic Social Media Marketing
- Instagram and Facebook have shown to be positive environments for cannabis content. Users of the platform engage with visual and thought-stimulating content. This grassroots methodology has proven to be able to build large online followings for a variety of players in the medical marijuana industry. Therefore, consistently producing high-quality imagery, videos, infographics, and more are all beneficial moves.
- Influencer Marketing
- This new strategy has been born primarily out of Instagram, where over 1 billion users now live on the photo and video sharing platform. By paying popular digital influencers to promote your brand on their channel, you open yourself up to a large pool of dedicated and motivated users. Marketers across industries have found that influencer paid advertisements have shown some of the best ROI numbers compared to other tactics.
- Email Drip Campaigns
- Email marketing has always been a low effort high reward strategy. While it may seem a bit antiquated, it gets results. With today’s consumers living on their phones, reaching their inbox has never been easier. Consumers constantly show a willingness to sign up for newsletters and weekly emails even if they have the slightest of interest — it’s a low barrier to entry. Email marketing provides a great option for attracting new customers and introducing them to your environment. Plus, email drip campaigns offer a straightforward approach to funneling audience members into customers.
SEO kind of tag-teams along with content marketing. Since multiple paid tactics like display and PPC are difficult to run for the cannabis-related industry, SEO has proven to be their best friend. Often, companies underutilize their website. Instead of it just being a harbor for all your content, it needs to be leveraged to pull consumers into your digital atmosphere.
Your website should consist of blogs and service pages that highlight and answer query-backed keyword phrases.
Example Blog Topic: Is medical marijuana safe to use?
What effects does marijuana have on individuals with chronic nausea?
In addition, your SEO efforts must extend to a constant optimization of the site. Metadata, title tags, video/image file size, redirects, error messages, etc. — all of these seemingly technical and mundane updates must be taken care of. The value of ranking on page one of Google results is almost priceless. Over 75 percent of all clicks for a keyword or phrase go exclusively to page one. If your SEO strategy is good enough, this marketing tactic alone can fuel a successful medical marijuana business.
Programmatic advertising is looking to be the next golden child within the marketing world. We’ve written an entire blog on what it is, and why it is so exciting, especially for players within the cannabis industry.
Just to recap, a simplified version of programmatic advertising allows businesses to buy ad space on privately owned websites such as The New York Times or TechCrunch and have their ads displayed to page visitors who fit the ad buyer’s ideal target market. This enables medical marijuana companies to use their money to produce paid ads, which is virtually impossible through platforms like Google and Facebook. While it is important to note that these sites have to be okay with displaying cannabis-related content, it is seldom a problem.
Therefore, this innovative new marketing strategy boils to the business being able to properly identify their target audience and what websites these targeted customers would possibly frequent — easy in theory, but more difficult in practicality.
Need Help Building Your Medical Marijuana Brand?
Elevato Marketing is a full-service digital agency specializing in cannabis advertising. With a team of experienced professionals, we are ready to help connect your products and services with the right clients. Contact us to see how together we can benefit your business!