05 Feb Best Practices for Marketing CBD
Developing a sound CBD marketing strategy is key to success. Learn how to use CBD marketing best practices to stand out in a sea of competition.
It is an exciting yet complex time for CBD retailers. Everywhere you turn nowadays, you’re likely to see racks of CBD products. Demand for CBD is at its highest and new CBD products hit the market every day, presenting quite a challenge for CBD marketers looking to differentiate their products from the mix of competition.
CBD product marketers are also faced with negotiating changing regulatory standards, as well as navigating the advertising and marketing obstacles that are unique to the hemp CBD industry.
Even with challenges facing CBD marketers, the rewards for CBD retailers make it worthwhile. Hemp-derived CBD retail sales in the United States reached over $1 billion last year, and interest in CBD continues to climb at record rates. The hemp CBD market shows no signs of slowing, with sales expected to surge to $10.3 billion by 2024.
To succeed in the current CBD landscape, you’ve got to craft an effective CBD marketing strategy. There is no better time than now to master best practices for marketing CBD. In this article, we’ll discuss how to best market your CBD products and help your business grow.
Focus on Education over Sales
Rather than simply trying to make a sale or advertising your CBD products, focus on building trust with your customers by educating them on CBD, the endocannabinoid system, and the science behind the compound’s effects. Serving as a CBD thought leader and teacher will not only distinguish your brand and products, but it will also expand your customer reach and boost engagement as those interested in CBD seek reliable information.
There is a wide range of misinformation and confusion about CBD oil out there. Many are still unaware that hemp-derived CBD is completely legal in the U.S., and even though CBD is non-intoxicating, there remains a lingering stigma because of its association with cannabis. Many of those who are comfortable using CBD are still a little confused as to how CBD works and why someone would want to add it to their routine.
In-store product demos are a great way to engage with your shoppers about CBD directly, educate them on how to use a particular CBD product, and let them experience the CBD product you’re featuring first-hand. These in-person educational events can effectively make a positive impression on those who are unaware of the product and its uses and benefits. Be sure to set up any demonstrators and the CBD products they’re showcasing in a high-traffic area to maximize opportunities for connecting with shoppers, and consider offering coupons or to-go brochures on your CBD products.
Brick-and-mortar retailers could also share CBD educational materials through their social channels. If your store also has an online presence, you could also build out in-depth, research-backed CBD content aimed at enhancing public knowledge about CBD and the CBD products you carry.
Target a Specific Audience
With the number of competitors in the CBD space, marketers can more effectively differentiate themselves from the pack by going after niche groups rather than trying to battle with the entire CBD landscape. Identifying a niche market is crucial for those entering the CBD space for the first time and will help you dial in on the right types of CBD products, packaging, and branding strategies that will connect with intended customers.
Think about the demographics of your consumers and choose CBD products that will align with their needs and preferences, and present them in an engaging way. What age group should you target, and what motivates them when considering and buying CBD oil? The natural health benefits of CBD are overwhelmingly diverse, so it’s important to position your CBD products in a way that resonates well with your target customers.
Be Responsible With CBD Claims
In your effort to educate the public, you need to make sure you’re being responsible when talking about CBD and CBD products. There are restrictions around what can and can’t be said when marketing CBD products. Avoid positioning CBD as some type of cure-all, because you’ll attract the attention of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). You want to make sure that you’re careful to avoid making specific claims about CBD’s ability to treat symptoms or diseases.
When marketing CBD products, it’s best to focus on the natural health and wellness benefits of CBD in broad terms. There is a plethora of compliant CBD educational information that you can relay to consumers.
Center Quality and Safety
CBD consumers have much higher expectations than they used to. They are increasingly aware of the need to inquire about the growing, manufacturing, and testing processes a CBD manufacturer uses in creating a CBD product. Yes, they’re interested in the health benefits of CBD more than ever before, but at the same time, they’re aware that the current lack of regulatory standards requires due diligence to identify a trusted provider.
Many brands and shops are creating or offering cheap CBD products to capitalize on the latest consumer trends, but in the end, they won’t last. Stand out from the pack by offering only high-quality and safe CBD products. If you purchase wholesale CBD or private label CBD products, be sure your supplier employs safe and responsible growing and manufacturing practices and rigorously tests their products.
Educate your consumers on how the CBD products you offer are different from those found in most grocery stores and gas stations. Consumers are willing to spend more on a high-quality product they can trust.
Build Loyalty by Growing Your Email List
Email marketing is one of the most effective revenue-driving channels available to any brand. Even if you sell CBD in a brick-and-mortar shop, focus on growing your email list and leverage segmentation and automation to deliver personalized content based on your target audience.
During in-store demos, prominently display an email sign-up sheet so that you can follow up with customers later. You could create a targeted email blast for those who stopped in briefly to the demo, and offer them a coupon on a future purchase.
Set up email capture forms throughout your website to help collect consumer and visitor contact data. Once you launch your sign-up forms, craft a sequence of welcome emails to help establish credibility, connect more closely to current and future consumers, showcase your best CBD products, and keep customers aware of new CBD products and any CBD product promos that you run in your shop.
Partner with Other Brands
CBD success stories often involve tales of partnerships. Expand your reach and build greater awareness around the CBD products you offer by partnering with other brands. Co-branding is a consumer-oriented partnership and your success in CBD marketing can really thrive when you plug into brands and companies that share a similar goal. By partnering with another brand, you can drive more traffic to the products in your store. By working together, your shop and the brand your partnering with can both grow.
An established CBD brand can also help a brick-and-mortar shop carrying CBD seem more familiar. For shops that want to start carrying CBD, the right co-branding partnership can help build validity with fans of that particular brand.
There are many ways in which a partnership can work. Often times it includes cross-promotion. For example, CBD brands that you carry in your shop may agree to shout you out through their social media channels, which introduces a new batch of potential customers who are loyal to that particular brand to your shop.
At HempMeds®, we regularly partner with the businesses that carry our CBD products. We’ll feature a CBD shop on our website or social media and feature them in our retail store locator so that consumers looking to buy our CBD products in person know where to go. We also highlight our CBD retailers in case studies, providing them exposure and helping them connect with new CBD-seeking consumers.
Work Around Advertising Hurdles
Even as hemp-derived CBD products are legal at the federal level, you’ll still find that many avenues for which you can digitally market CBD products are constricted. Google, the world’s largest search engine for which many companies rely on advertising, is only just testing the waters for allowing paid ads for CBD products. Facebook recently relaxed its ban on some CBD advertising, but promoting ingestible hemp and CBD is still not an option. Twitter is also not open to advertising CBD.
How do you work around these CBD advertising obstacles? Engage with consumers through quality, organic content and educational in-store demos that generate trust. You can also build brand or product awareness through influencer marketing and by collecting testimonials that you can share with your audience.
Watch Your Competition
You can learn a lot by monitoring your competition and examining their strengths, weaknesses, and selling points. Regularly research your CBD competitors in your chosen audience niche and market area to see how they are going after and presenting themselves to consumers.
Go beyond looking through a competitor’s web page or visiting their brick-and-mortar shop. Monitor their social media channels to see how they’re communicating with consumers. If you’re using online marketing strategies, use competitor research tools like SpyFu to research what keywords other CBD companies are targeting, and Google Alerts to easily stay up on what your competitors are up to.
By investing even a small amount of time to understanding your competition, you’ll be able to stay ahead of trends that could impact your CBD business and pick up strategies that are effective while also avoiding the mistakes your competitors make.
Keep an Eye on CBD Market Regulations
Stay on top of the laws governing hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD), as they have changed dramatically in recent years and new CBD marketing and distribution regulations are expected from the FDA sometime this year.
As of now, the FDA has said that it is illegal to market CBD by adding it to a food or labeling it as a dietary supplement. The agency is still crafting national CBD rules, so you’ll want to keep an eye out for any announcements that change how you can market CBD.
More on Marketing CBD
The barrier to market entry is significantly low for the CBD industry, and the truth is that standing out from the dense crowd can be challenging. Still, there has never been a better time to enter the hemp CBD industry. Millions of consumers are indulging in CBD products these days as more of the compound’s noteworthy health benefits become more common knowledge.
Learn more about successfully marketing and selling CBD products through our education blog. Are you looking to buy CBD oil products wholesale or find a private label CBD supplier? Visit the HempMeds® CBD for Business page.