Legal cannabis sales skyrocketed 46% last year, and the industry’s marketing sector is growing alongside it. But marketing a substance that is only recreationally legal in 14 states and medicinally permitted in 36 requires a more targeted approach than ads for soft drinks or toilet paper. Here are seven things to know about cannabis marketing.
Thanks to the industry’s meteoric growth and coronavirus-era essential status in many states, cannabis consumers have emerged as one of the most coveted marketing segments, driving even more engagement in data collection and presentation. A rising tide lifts all boats – and data is a powerful tide that can help raise the industry to mainstream acceptance.
Data may be the ticket to legalization, too, if leveraged in a way that considers how this lucrative information can be used by mainstream companies. As cannabis data begins to resemble data from other industries, it is our responsibility as industry leaders to collectively leverage this data and allow legal cannabis to flourish and emerge as a truly established industry.
While geofenced campaigns and foot traffic attribution are old hat for mainstream brands, they represent a new frontier for cannabis businesses.
Despite widespread legalization in many states, the cannabis industry has been shut out from many of the most effective marketing and advertising strategies. In some cases, those restrictions come in the form of strict state and federal laws. In other cases, it’s simply due to a lack of ad tech platforms willing to accept their campaigns.
But times are changing, and new doors are opening up to businesses in the cannabis industry.
If the California Bureau of Cannabis Control’s proposed regulations are passed, state-licensed cannabis businesses will be required to display unique QR code certificates in their store windows. They would need to have their QR codes handy when transporting cannabis as well. In the long term, lawmakers are hoping the regulation will help consumers avoid purchasing cannabis from unlicensed vendors. In the short term, though, the proposed regulation is forcing dispensaries and other cannabis businesses to search for ways to create compliant QR codes for their stores.
Centro develops enterprise-class software for digital advertising organizations. CannaVu operates an ad exchange for cannabis and CBD marketers. Together, these two companies are working to change the way cannabis brands advertise online and break down the barriers that have slowed industry growth.
That trend has led to a significant uptick in the number of cannabis businesses using seed-to-sale ERP software. Seed-to-sale platforms give cannabis businesses a way to track and regulate inventory. Although older seed-to-sale systems were challenging for growers to use, updated versions of the most popular platforms have been re-designed to allow growers to more easily track inventory, run smarter operations, and identify crop hazards in a way that still meets current regulations.
Here are five popular seed-to-sale platforms for cannabis businesses.
The cannabis vertical is filled with dispensaries, laboratories, growers, manufacturers, and on-demand delivery services. More broadly speaking, the industry is comprised of plant-touching businesses (growers, processors, dispensaries) and ancillary businesses (delivery apps, payment processors, technology solutions). What businesses in both of these categories rely on is marketing to attract and retain customers, which helps to explain why the number of marketing automation solutions for cannabis businesses is growing so quickly.
Here are six examples of marketing automation platforms aimed at the cannabis industry.
We often refer to the many facets of local advertising, media, and commerce as simply ‘local.’ But it’s a bit of a misnomer because the local commerce universe is really made up of several galaxies.
That includes various products that help local businesses, both SMBs and multi-location brands, acquire and keep customers. It’s everything from SEO to listings management to point-of-sale systems. Beyond product function, there’s also vertical segmentation, which encompasses diverse industries from pizza shops to plumbers.
This will be Street Fight’s editorial focus for the month of October. You may have realized we’ve been assigning themes to each month — September being about mapping, August about the connected car, and so on. These are all tentpole issues in local media, advertising, and commerce.
Growers, dispensaries, and other businesses that operate in the legal cannabis industry are caught between federal and state regulations, which make banking and payroll a challenge. Despite marijuana being legal in many states, cannabis businesses are still on shaky ground at the federal level, and banks in particular are skittish about partnering with the industry. Without solid banking partners, local cannabis businesses can have trouble keeping up on payroll. So what’s the solution?
Rather than waiting for Congress to make a decision on potential regulations that would shield banks from federal punishment for maintaining accounts for cannabis businesses, more dispensaries and growers are moving toward using web-based cannabis payroll platforms designed specifically for their industry.
Cannabis startups are struggling to recruit job candidates who understand the cannabis market, which is opening the door to an entirely new vertical for technology firms with recruitment platforms. With the market itself still in its infancy, a handful of key players are vying to become the go-to recruiting sources for the cannabis industry as they work to match employers with job seekers who understand the state-by-state rules and regulations that govern the marijuana market.
Could running ads for cannabis products put digital publishers in the crosshairs of federal regulators? It’s a question that more and more publishers are asking, even as marijuana legalization continues to spread across the U.S.
In a bid to help businesses in the cannabis industry understand what is, and isn’t, legal from an advertising perspective, Dash Two released its own guide to marijuana advertising laws. The company says it will keep its guide updated as the laws continue to evolve.
One of the signs that an industry is becoming more legitimate is when its major players start investing in analytics. With a recent boom in the number of data analytics firms entering the cannabis space, it’s time to reevaluate the landscape for recreational marijuana as a business.
The marijuana industry is expanding at a rapid pace. Analysts estimate the industry could reach $75 billion in global sales by 2030. With so much on the line and marijuana companies facing enormous pressure to innovate, investors are pushing for the increased use of data analytics to make more strategic business decisions.
Here are seven cannabis data analytics firms working to change the face of the industry right now.
I make it a priority to stay on top of the ever-changing trends of the cannabis industry. A plant that is no longer being grown roadside and smoked out of fruit bongs (unless you’re into that), the 2019 version of cannabis can seem a little intimidating to the average (Mary) Jane. Below are the top trends that I’ve noticed are gaining popularity with cannabis users.
Growers and dispensaries in certain states are required to submit reports that include information about their customers and sales to governing bodies. How easy, or difficult, these reports are to generate depends on the CRM platform that the business is using, and those platforms designed for marijuana businesses specifically tend to make the process as efficient as possible.
Here are five examples of CRM platforms designed for businesses in the cannabis industry, along with details about what makes each of these platforms unique.
Unlike traditional POS solutions, or even mobile systems like Square, cannabis point-of-sale systems are designed in a way that helps dispensaries operate under the appropriate guidelines, particularly when it comes to processing cash and managing inventory. Here are six cannabis point-of-sale systems that dispensaries are using right now.