Guide About Cannabis Marketing

The endocannabinoid system in humans is made up of nerve receptors. These receptors have an impact on mood, wellness, and emotional reactions in addition to the immune system and pain perception.

The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is an endocannabinoid system

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a bodily superpower found in all animals except select invertebrates. As Rachel Knox, MD, MBA; Endocannabinologist, Co-Founder, and President, Cannabis Health Equity Movement describes it, this messenger and receptor system is analogous to “a switch board functioning in and around all physiologies and organs, acting and reacting to internal stimuli to direct correct and overall manage your health.” The ECS system consists of the following components:

  • On the surface of cells, there are cannabinoid receptors.
  • Ligands that bind to certain receptors and cause them to do something.
  • Cannabinoid receptors are activated by endocannabinoids, which are tiny molecules.
  • Enzymes that break down endocannabinoids once they’ve been used

How to Speak Cannabidiol (CBD) —

It’s always a good idea to start any conversation by defining what terms imply, and this is especially important when speaking with a passionate cannabis brand advocate. So, much like you would study a few basic phrases before traveling abroad, here are a few terminology to become comfortable with while discussing cannabis.


Cannabis is the scientific name for hemp/marijuana plants belonging to the Cannabinaceae family. It’s also a catch-all word for any of the different goods made from these plants in the business.


Cannabis plants to buy on online dispensary Canada and a few other botanical sources include cannabinoids, which are chemical substances or components. CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are the two most usually mentioned cannabinoids (tetrahydrocannabinol). THC, on the other hand, has psychoactive effects on consumers. Another non-intoxicating cannabinoid, CBG (cannabigerol), has recently made ripples in the market.

The substances that interact with the endocannabinoid system to create medicinal and/or psychoactive effects are known as cannabinoids.


Cannabis product legality varies by state and product kind.

As of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp CBD is legal in the United States, although it must adhere to all other THC-related laws.

THC-infused CBD is no longer a controlled substance under federal law, but it may be regulated at the state level. THC content below 0.3 percent is no longer a controlled substance under federal law, but it may be regulated at the state level.

Consumer age and location-based restrictions apply to products and services such as dispensaries and accessories.

Although THC remains illegal at the federal level, numerous states have approved legislation making it legal for medicinal and recreational use.

7 Cannabis Marketing Must-Haves*

At its foundation, the cannabis sector is a business environment. Focus and time are required for success. Employ a coordinated cannabis marketing plan where everyone commits to learning more for the greatest results. Important Note: Regulations can change at any time. Confirm legalities with local municipalities and partners before launching cannabis advertising campaigns.

1. Cannabis regulation is fragmented, necessitating localized marketing tactics.

Brands can’t assume that just because medical marijuana is legal in their state, it’s also lawful in their region or even city. In Maine, for example, cannabis advertisers are prohibited from using location-based targeting unless their advertising are presented in-app to persons aged 21 and up. In Massachusetts, where cannabis is permitted for both medical and recreational use, advertisements can only promote medical use. Ads can run on the mobile web as well as in-app in California, and they can encourage recreational or medical use. It’s a case of “who’s on first, what’s on second.”

As a result, on the West Coast—where cannabis has been allowed for recreational use for several years in states like California and Washington—digital advertisements are typically trafficked and launched without a hitch. In general, issues develop in newly permitted recreational states, where cannabis advertising guidelines are continually changing, adding to the red tape for multi-state firms. One of MNI’s larger cannabis clients, for example, planned to launch a significant campaign in Michigan at the beginning of March, but the campaign was put on hold due to the need for extra state permissions that were not in place when the campaign was originally scheduled.

2. Navigating publication rules might also be challenging.

Marketers have problems due to the small number of media sources that allow cannabis advertising. Because cannabis is not yet federally authorized, broadcasting is severely limited. For the same reason, many large websites are refusing to accept cannabis advertisements. In California, out-of-home (OOH) advertising is prohibited on interstate highways. Magazines are subject to the same restrictions. Most major publishers, including Meredith Corporation, the country’s largest magazine publisher, would not accept cannabis-related ads until the substance is declared legally legal.

3. For agency partners and cannabis marketing agencies, complicated rules are frequently the case.

It’s a full-time job keeping up with all the changing parts of marijuana regulation and publisher preferences, which is why more and more businesses are seeing the value of hiring specialists on everything from brand positioning to programmatic exchanges. In the cannabis industry, it’s critical to have reliable partners who are devoted to staying up to date on what’s legal where, day by day and week by week. It is impossible for one person to achieve it alone.

4. Cannabis marketing is mostly reliant on education.

When it comes to cannabis advertising, education is crucial. It’s vital to realize that this is a new arena for many people, and older generations may have had different experiences with the product when they were younger. Consumers are more inclined to build relationships with brands that have user-friendly websites. Ingredients, source materials, and recommended usage are all things that customers seek for.

Several firms are focusing their advertising efforts on education surrounding the general benefits that cannabis/CBD products bring in everyday life, in addition to teaching potential customers about the product itself.

5. Cannabis marketers can choose from a variety of digital targeting methods and marketing platforms.

There are numerous alternatives for marketers trying to reach either the medical or recreational customer when it comes to digital techniques. Display, pre-roll, streaming audio, digital out-of-home, and high-impact rich media are just a few of the options available. While these strategies can be used for both recreational and medicinal purposes, we’ve seen that medical advertisers are focusing more on condition-based audience targeting segments, such as those with glaucoma or anxiety, which have been the two most popular health-related segments to date.

6. There are cannabis ad programmatic marketplaces.

Cannabis brands benefit from programmatic advertising since it streamlines the entire process. It solves the most difficult difficulty that cannabis marketers face: determining which publishers will accept cannabis advertisements. Businesses must first ensure they comply with all legal regulations before launching a programmatic marketing for cannabis items. Programmatic advertisers and vendors will need to layer in business factors once legal and policy problems have been addressed.

Prospective programmatic partners should consider the following questions:

What technologies do I have in place to support geo-targeting and audience composition?

What cannabis products and services can we sell to boost income without jeopardizing existing connections or negatively impacting user experiences?

7. Cannabis advertising isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution.

Marketers, in addition to the human touch, require partners and exchanges in order to stand apart. This is how businesses keep informed and competitive. MNI offers a complete cannabis advertising solution in a single package.

Advertising Tips for Cannabis Products:

  • There is no depiction of smoking or any other form of consumption.
  • The terms “weed,” “cannabis,” or “marijuana” must not appear in the copy text.
  • Other colloquial phrases should also be avoided.
  • There are no health claims that are curative (i.e., curing a disease, pain relief, hangover cure, etc.)
  • There are no cartoons, graphics, or styles that could be considered as kid marketing.
  • Assets must be consistent with product labels.

Some states demand proof that a person identified as a representative in an advertisement is a real patient or health care provider, not a model or actor. As a result, avoid using stock photographs featuring people.

While photographs depicting recreational use in product advertising are permitted in editorial articles on the business, certain states prohibit them in product advertising.

Have you checked with your legal department to see if your publication/platform accepts payments from “plant-touching” businesses that produce and sell THC cannabis products?

Is it acceptable for your organization to advertise cannabis brands and goods across all of its assets and channels? What brands and products have been approved?

Have you promoted any other cannabis or adult-use-only recreational brands, as well as healthcare, wellness, or pharmaceutical brands and/or products?


  • Cannabis advertising is permitted on which properties and/or channels?
  • Are these open exchanges or private marketplaces?


  • Do you have exclusive cannabis inventory? What is your media footprint/site list of inventory that allows cannabis advertising?
  • Are there any channel limits owing to cannabis category restrictions, such as accessibility or scalability difficulties on desktop or mobile?


  • What kind of targeting capabilities do you have, and how scalable are they?
  • Are the target audiences HIPAA-compliant?
  • Is geo-targeting, age gating, or other contextual targeting possible?

Guidelines for Creativity

  • What are your creative guidelines and ad types that you accept?
  • Will you permit the use of the term “cannabis” in ad copy? Will you accept images of plants?
  • How do you go about getting artistic approval? Can you execute without a creative review on a case-by-case basis?
  • Do you have any cannabis-specific brand safety and appropriateness policies?
  • Do you have any further constraints on the inclusion of individuals in creative due to state legislation requiring that the individuals shown be genuine patients or health care practitioners?