It’s finally here! That monumental moment that Canadians have been waiting for seemingly since the dawn of time. That’s right, folks. Cannabis is now legal in a province near you.
While the consumption of cannabis for medical and recreational reasons is legal, the marketing of cannabis products is under some abnormally heavy restrictions at the moment.
Many who are mystified by these Health Canada guidelines are opting to remain inactive rather than taking on the risk – so how on earth are you supposed to market your cannabis dispensary?
There are indeed restrictions, but friends, I’m here to tell you it doesn’t have to be so complicated. With a bit of tact, there are still plenty of ways that cannabis brands can get in front of the prized (and possibly overwhelmed) consumer. Here are three that you should definitely consider for your dispensary marketing plan:
#1 Establish A Loyal Social Media Following
Social media remains a completely viable way for brands to interact with consumers. In many ways, social media is the preferred avenue for brand awareness as it enables you to be creative and establish an identity that people can come to love.
Rather than promoting products (which is still iffy in terms of legality), promote your brand’s identity–those characteristics, traits and attributes that make your brand almost human. These unique brand attributes are what people connect with and base their decisions off when it comes time to purchase. It also presents you with more opportunities to impact and ultimately shape the culture that surrounds cannabis.
When it comes to market research, being present on social media will also give you an edge. By engaging with the people you think would love your product, you’ll inevitably get to know them better and can adjust your medical marijuana dispensary marketing efforts accordingly.
#2 Meet Your Peeps Where They’re At
There’s a huge chance that your dispensary isn’t open yet as many are (im)patiently awaiting their licenses to arrive. While definitely makes it more difficult to get to know your consumer, there are plenty of other ways to get in front of them.
Being such a celebrated topic right now, many companies are hosting cannabis events to encourage their community to come together. Cannabis brands can easily leverage the plethora of trade shows already out there–attending, exhibiting or speaking at these events are a great opportunity to become known in the industry and make an impact.
Or if you’re feeling ambitious, host your own event! This is your chance to really make waves with your community and show them an unforgettable experience. Plan a night on the town or a fun open house at your office. You can’t give away freebies or merchandise, but you can use the occasion to get to know your consumer better and educate them about your business.
#3 Creating Meaningful Value
Cannabis has been around for a long time–but the industry itself is in its infancy. New consumers are likely to feel overwhelmed by the sheer velocity of choices available to them, especially with so many misconceptions floating around about cannabis use and the culture surrounding it.
Content marketing is your opportunity to take the lead on dispelling the myths and stigma around cannabis. Create blogs that teach both old and new users what’s what. It’s a great way to provide meaningful value to your consumers and become a thought-leading pioneer in the industry.
Bonus! Frequently adding industry-relevant content to your website’s blog will improve your website’s search ranking, helping your brand with search engine visibility.
No matter how you choose to get in front of your audience, your marketing efforts should always be focused on creating meaningful value and one-of-a-kind experiences that resonate with the consumer. Make music, not noise. Cannabis consumers are unique in many ways but they still want a brand that is going to provide them with real value; one that they can adopt into their lifestyle and feel proud to vouch for.
I hope this will give you some ideas on how to successfully market your cannabis company. And if you’re ever in doubt, our team at Kika Marketing been helping cannabis brands since 2014 develop and implement effective marketing strategies–just check out our portfolio of work.