As each new state and municipality continues the inevitable march toward legalization, the cannabis market grows even more saturated. Even states that have recently legalized recreational marijuana are already seeing a crowded market. Many businesses are likely to face consolidation or closure as competition becomes increasingly fierce in the next few years.
It’s survival of the fittest, and Gentleman Toker is here to help you shape up. We recommend you make sure your business comes out on top by stocking top-notch products, providing awesome customer service, and executing a killer marketing strategy. At the Gentleman, we love nothing more than seeing great cannabis businesses succeed, that’s why we’re here to share our advice on the best methods for local cannabis marketing.
One of the best ways to get your business directly in front of the eyes of cannabis customers is to post it on a local directory like Gentleman Toker. Don’t just take our word for it, see the list of D.C.-area cannabis businesses that have joined our site for yourself. These organizations have employed the services of the Gentleman because they know the value that a local directory can bring. We’re the one-stop shop for local residents to find the finest weed around.
When you join up with Gentleman Toker, it's like joining an exclusive club. Once we check you out and make sure you’re the real deal, we introduce you to the most important people around—your future customers! The visitors to our site know our list is curated and every business has been vetted for professionalism by the Gentleman Toker team. Instead of fighting with every other cannabis business in town to find some customers, you can park your business right on our website and let the customers come to you. Just send us a bit of info about your cannabis business and we can see about adding an extra member to the club.
In the midst of social media, internet radio, and SEO strategies, billboards can feel a little quaint, but that doesn’t mean they’re not effective. They’ve even got these fancy new digital billboards that don’t even require you to print anything off. Just send over an email with a (surprisingly small) attachment of your image and they can put it up in no time. There are plenty of billboards to choose from, so be sure to do your research on the demographics and traffic for any area you consider. Plus, most states have specific laws around where and how you can advertise cannabis with a billboard.
What Should Be Displayed on a Cannabis Billboard Ads?
The best thing to keep in mind when designing your cannabis billboard ad is to keep it short and sweet. The longest you can hope to catch a driver’s attention is around six seconds, so you’ll want to draw their eyes with a great image, bright colors, and some short text in a large font. Tell them who you are, show them why you’re great, and—oh wait, they’re already gone. On to the next car!
Video killed the radio star and the internet brought them back. Surveys show that more than two-thirds of Americans have listened to online audio in the past month. The great thing about internet radio is there is a high degree of specificity for who is listening. Depending on the service, you can pick and choose your listening demographics to find your perfect target audience.
Why Not Use Traditional Radio for Marijuana Ads?
Well, for one, because people are listening to less and less radio all the time. Surveys show that the younger generations especially are tuning out traditional radio. But the real issue is that the FCC has banned cannabis advertisements from traditional radio and tv. This is in part because stations have limited control over where the radio waves end up. An ad might be broadcast in one state where cannabis is legal, and picked up in a state where it's not.
In the post-pandemic era, people are just itching for in-person entertainment. Hosting or sponsoring an event is a great way to get boots on the ground and meet new customers. Cannabis industry events are a good spot to find guaranteed smokers and a great place to gain some rep by speaking at an event to show off your expertise. Even if you don’t have a booth to talk to people in person, advertising an event will still get your name out there.
The limitations on how cannabis marketing can operate put extra emphasis on search engine optimization (SEO). By bringing potential customers to your website, you have the opportunity to tell your own story of why your business is the best place to shop. Unlike a billboard or a radio ad, your website gives you the space to wax eloquent on your products, your staff, and more. Great SEO content should always be based on sound research of your competitors and the keyword search terms your potential customers are using.
This one can be a bit tricky since you’re not going to be able to find a major digital ad company that’s willing to display cannabis products. But you can work directly with specific websites to post your ad on their site. Your best bet is to work with websites that already cover cannabis products. Gentleman Toker, for instance, places banner ads on our website for local marijuana businesses.
Building a social media following is vital to any cannabis marketing strategy. Unless you’re one of those people who is used to always posting what they do on social media, you’ll want to build a calendar and pre-plan your social media posts in advance. Make sure to include a lot of great photos, though not photos of cannabis, to show off your business.
Can You Advertise Weed on Facebook?
No. Unfortunately, Facebook’s current ad policy does not allow any THC or CBD products to be advertised on their platform. You can, however, advertise hemp products. Any promotion on Meta’s social media platforms will need to be done through regular posting.
You’ll want to use tools such as social media, in-person events, and SEO as a way to collect potential customers' email accounts. Then you can plan a strategy of sending out semi-regular emails to your subscribers to promote new products and sales. Avoid overloading their inboxes with spammy content and clickbait subject lines, since that’s a surefire way to get yourself blocked.
Talk to the Cannabis Marketing Experts at Gentleman Toker
Everything we’ve gone over so far is just the tip of the iceberg. There are countless cannabis marketing strategies out there, and they’ll differ with every region. But if you’re in D.C. or the surrounding area, we can help you jump to the front of the line by getting you a place on Gentleman Toker. Drop us a line and tell us a bit about your business to get started.