Best Marketing Strategies for Cannabis Companies

Here are some ways you can market your cannabis brand to capture the attention of your target audience and reel in revenue for your business

Written by
Cameron Gallacher
Co-Founder and CMO

December 8, 2022

Last Updated:

December 8, 2022

If you have a cannabis business, you're probably well aware of how hard it is to market because of the limitations that are in place. For example, national banks don't do business with cannabis companies and likely will not do so until regulatory frameworks are in place to protect them.

Moreover, many marketing and advertising programs and platforms have made it impossible to put up cannabis-related advertisements. So, when it comes to getting new customers, cannabis businesses are, without a doubt, in a tough spot.

With the global market for the cannabis industry set to reach $166 billion by 2025, many businesses are waiting for public opinion to continue its slow but steady march toward acceptance and for more ad platforms to change their rules about cannabis advertising. As you wait for that to happen, here are some ways you can market your cannabis brand to capture the attention of your target audience continuously.

Before You Start Implementing Your Cannabis Marketing Strategy

Cannabis businesses must be creative and persistent in their search for new ways to produce and sell their cannabis products to consumers. Finding paid and organic channels to reach your target audience is an opportunity, but finding such might be challenging.

The first step in making a cannabis marketing strategy is figuring out who your target market is. You can focus on medical patients, recreational users, or cannabis businesses as a whole. Once you have determined your target audience, you can move on to the next stage, which is oming up with cannabis marketing strategies.

If you want to promote your cannabis brand successfully, you should try to imagine yourself as one of your ideal customers. Why do you think people need to buy your product or service? What benefits will this do for them? If you answer these and similar questions, you should find it easier to plan how to market your cannabis products and services.

Best Marketing Strategies for Cannabis Companies

Since the cannabis industry is still fairly new and federal law does not yet allow paid cannabis-related ads, many traditional marketing tactics are unsuitable for your cannabis marketing campaign. So where do you go? How can you get the word out about your cannabis business? While this is a typical problem for any new venture, it is especially hard for new cannabis companies.

Below are some of the best cannabis marketing strategies you can use to market your goods and services.

Attract Local Customers Through Billboards

People probably don't even think about billboards as they used to now that the Internet is the go-to place for almost everything. But they are still a viable option for cannabis businesses.

In many countries where cannabis is legalized, billboards are a simple way to get your business in front of potential local customers. Be wary that some cities and billboard owners will each have their policies on cannabis advertisements.

Set up Cannabis Product Vending Machines

In 2014, the first marijuana vending machines opened in Vancouver, where people could get pre-rolls and drinks. The high-resolution touch screens equipped on these vending machines can show interactive ads, which could be a way for your cannabis brand to get its name out there.

You can also wrap the vending machine with your company's branding. Many cannabis companies can benefit from the vending machines' fast transactions, enhanced profit margins, and branding opportunities.

Attend Cannabis Industry Conventions and Other Events

Cannabis conventions, trade shows, and other events in the industry are great places for vendors, retailers, and companies to show off their products to customers who are most likely to buy them. This could allow you to make new sales or promote your products while connecting with or learning more about your potential partners and competitors.

Here is a list of some of the most common ways that businesses use cannabis conventions to advertise and promote their products:

  • Booth: A booth at an event could be a great way to meet new customers, start conversations with your target audience, and allow people to interact or try your products in person.
  • Speaking slots: Securing speaking opportunities at cannabis industry events can be a great way to get your cannabis brand in front of your clients and position yourself as an expert in this field.
  • Ad placements: There are usually hundreds of places where ads can be placed around large-scale conventions. You can increase brand visibility by putting it on hotel room key cards, public transportation, signs, and other conference banners.

Host Your Own Cannabis Events

If you want more people to pay attention to your brand, consider hosting your own local event. Even simple things like attending a meetup or a fireside chat can greatly improve your standing in your local community.

More prominent cannabis brands can consider conducting private conferences for better networking opportunities and meaningful connections.

Collaborate With Other Brands

When two businesses are in the cannabis industry, they will likely face the same marketing challenges. So, a partnership with a similar brand can be suitable for both companies. Collaboration can be a great way to get more people to know about your brand since you can use your partner's audience.

Use Sponsorships to Take Advantage of Existing Customers

Building your audience and customer base should be the ultimate goal of any cannabis business. The question is, how do you build an audience if you don't have one yet? One effective way is to negotiate with the media or events you want to sponsor.

Here is a list of some of the types of events and media that your cannabis company should consider sponsoring:

  • Podcasts: If you can't find a cannabis-related podcast in your area, you can tap on national cannabis companies instead local pot shops. There are thousands of cannabis podcasts that are growing at an astounding rate. These podcasts would be great places to advertise your cannabis company.
  • Trade shows and events: Cannabis trade shows and events are also great places to sponsor. They will not only help you reach an engaged and loyal audience, but they will also help you get your brand across to people in your industry. There are different sponsorship opportunities available at every industry event and trade show. Sponsorships at local cannabis shows are likely to cost less than national cannabis events.
  • YouTube Channels: A YouTube sponsorship can mean different things to different channels, such as incorporating a short video ad within the content or creating a product review. It's important to remember that YouTube has its own terms of service. Before moving forward, you'll need to ensure that any sponsorship deals you make are allowed on the site.
  • Local events: Sponsoring a local event will help cannabis brands raise awareness and start building a reputation as a positive force in the community, which are both soothing that many cannabis companies are struggling with.

Hire Brand Ambassadors or Advertise by Word of Mouth

Cannabis businesses should spend more time building brand ambassadors and creating strong word-of-mouth marketing programs to compensate for their limited advertising opportunities.

Keeping good relationships with your most influential customers is essential if you want them to be loyal to your brand. You can also benefit from making connections with social media profiles with existing followers that suits your target audience.

But a real word-of-mouth marketing program involves a lot more than just trying to spread information through social media. This strategy aims to get people excited about your brand and products they want to talk about even when you're not there.

It is best to ensure that your customers are proud of your company and the things you sell and have an environment where they feel welcome and want to participate. One effective way to do this is by setting up a customer loyalty program to get your most loyal consumers excited about your company's brand and products.

Drive Sales Through Affiliate Marketing

The affiliate marketing strategy is suitable for marijuana marketing if you are looking for an affordable marketing method.

Affiliate advertising is a form of marketing in which an online store pays a commission to an external website for sales generated from its referrals. Influencers could be from social media sites or well-known blogs. You can increase sales of cannabis products by working with a cannabis blogger with a large and active following.

To actively promote and increase your chances of driving sales through your affiliate marketing program, you should:

  • List the details of your affiliate program on your website.
  • Source appropriate influencers.
  • Get in touch with the people or sites that suit your cannabis brand.
  • Take part in networking with affiliates.
  • Buy advertising space on websites that cannabis enthusiasts often visit.

Pitch to Well-Known Journalists and Publications

Pitching to well-known journalists and publications can help cannabis businesses reach almost the same level of success as other businesses. The only thing that could go wrong is that some publications might not want to write about marijuana or promote companies that deal with it. But you can mitigate these worries by pitching the idea correctly.

Remember that journalists, especially well-known ones, get pitches all day long. Here is how you can stand out from the constant stream of mediocre pitches they're used to:

  • Do some research: Make sure you're talking to the right editor or journalist, and see if they've written about similar topics.
  • Provide some legwork: People are grateful when you do things that make their jobs easier. Including a document with research sources, statistics, or insights may make them more likely to accept your pitch.
  • Think about who you're talking to: Make your presentation more personal. Refer to things they've written in the past that made you think they were the right person to contact.
  • Keep it concise: Their time is just as valuable as yours. If you can, try to keep your pitch to a few short sentences. Give them an overview of the story, tell them why they should care about it, and point them toward some helpful resources.

People who work in journalism and editing have a lot on their plates. If you don't hear back from them, it does not always indicate that they are not interested in what you have to offer. Keep following up with your pitch politely until it is accepted or turned down.

Implement the Best Digital Marketing Strategies

You need to ensure that people can find your cannabis business online. You should first set up your website and establish authority by filling it with helpful information that can answer your target audience's queries. There are a few things that cannabis business owners can do to improve their online presence.

  • Invest in your website: Your website should be mobile-friendly and display your current products, deals, locations, contact information, and store hours. Plus points if you also have a newsletter, blog, or loyalty program.
  • Come up with valuable and relevant content. Make sure your customers understand your business, your industry, and the products you sell. It is essential to produce content that targets specific keywords, but your main goal should be giving your community useful educational information.
  • Get good reviews from customers: Collect reviews and use the most popular platforms to spread them. Most potential customers will read and use those reviews as their primary or secondary source of information when deciding whether or not to buy from you. For a strong search presence, you need to have enough reviews so potential clients don't have second thoughts.
  • Use social media platforms: Even though cannabis companies can't pay for advertising on social media sites, that doesn't mean they can't have a social media presence as a brand. In digital marketing, social media may be the most effective and easiest way to get in touch with your target audience.

List Your Business on Online & Local Marijuana Directories

You will benefit from using local and online directories in your marijuana marketing strategy. But only if you ensure that your brand is listed correctly and optimized on as many cannabis-specific websites as possible. Here are some of the key benefits your company can get from online listings:

  • Better brand visibility: Directories are one of the places for a potential cannabis customer to run into your brand. Many users are picky about which cannabis strains they want to get. So, if you are listed in relevant online directories, more people will be able to find you and check out what you have to offer.
  • Increased customer trust: Using local directories can improve the reputation of your brand, which could then increase trust. A lot of online directories will also have a place for customer reviews, which will help your brand's reputation even more and may convince customers to choose you over your competitors.
  • Improved SEO rankings: Using local and online directories can improve your cannabis SEO strategy and search engine rankings. Google says that about 80% of people use search engines to find information about their local area. So if your business has yet to claim even one online local listing, you are missing a big opportunity. Directories will help provide backlinks to your website, which can help your name appear in the search results, bringing in more traffic to your platform.

Improve Your SEO and Content Marketing Strategy

You likely already know how important search engine optimization is for your marijuana marketing strategy. SEO-optimized content can help you build your brand and increase your overall online visibility.

Cannabis users will land on your website the most if your SEO is on point and you have a handful of top-ranking pages. But people often need to remember that Google is always working on separate low-quality and high-quality content. Thus, it is crucial to make valuable, high-quality, and SEO-optimized content based on profitable and popular keyword search queries.

Once people keep typing in your brand or domain name, that means you have built up credibility to rank higher on search engine platforms, driving increased revenues for your business.


Even though it may be harder for cannabis businesses to find trustworthy marketing channels, this is not a problem unique to the cannabis industry. Due to complex rules and regulations, companies in gambling, the financial sector, and the medical field also find it hard to get their brand in front of their target audience.

When it comes to marketing, cannabis companies don't have a lot of options because federal laws, state laws, and the rules of the biggest advertising networks limit them from doing certain things. One thing you can do to get an edge over your competitors and set yourself up for long-term success is to be creative, leveraging existing audiences and building customer relationships.

The best cannabis marketing strategy you can implement is strengthening your online brand visibility. If you want to reel in revenue with the help of SEO, content marketing, email marketing, and website design, check out our offers here on Latched.

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