Cannabis still remains a schedule 1 narcotic. That in itself makes things difficult for entrepreneurs looking to reach out to new clients and establish themselves in a potential and effective industry.
Though many have become succesful in states like Colorado, Oregon, California, and Washington, the ability to reach out to others is limited by the legalities of most states. Like ciggarettes, cannabis businesses aren’t allowed to promote themselves through television. The main focus for many is print, but print is expensive.
Word of mouth was the original advertisers for those looking to relax, but now cannabis has focussed itself in an established, billion dollar industry that seeks to continue its growth to other states.
According to Marijuana Business Magazine:
“About 80% of what you can do in the advertising world is locked off from the cannabis world,” Darran Bruce, the owner and founder of Independent Alternative Media in Seattle, said.
Denver-based Iris, for example, only gets about 50% of its revenue from the cannabis industry, while Seattle’s Independent Alternative Media only gets about 25% of its business from marijuana.
“It’s constantly growing,” said Bruce, adding that his company’s revenues from the cannabis industry have been steadily increasing.
So where can they turn to obtain financial growth?
The answer is digital. Digital has the monitorization that television and print simply don’t have. Social media, for a significantly low cost can bring the reach you need. It provides the metrics that allow you to see how many people your ad is reaching as well as give’s companies insights as to better evaluate who they are reaching out to.
Now, there are some barriers to using social media to advertise your canna-business. Facebook’s strict guidelines provide very limited advertising space even for medicinal uses. But for hemp-based products such as clothing, paper, and various other utilities that come from the hemp plant, the options are slightly more relaxed.
Other than Facebook, social media sites such as Instagram, Snapchat, Tumblr, and Pinterest have no real censorship in regards to the advertising of cannabis products. The key here is that, with digital, there will always be a successful re-routing of information. If you dam a river, water will always move around it.