The best way to market cannabis is through live experience. How could you not respond to a friendly person offering to rub CBD butter into your palm or luring you into a spectacular installation of the latest LED growth technology?
Cannabis is on track to become a 30+ billion-dollar industry, and experiential marketing has surpassed traditional means of advertising. Experiential marketing, aka event or engagement marketing, works best on today’s millennial buyers, who value personal experiences over belongings, as well as people of all ages. This theory applies to all industries but is amplified in the cannabis world, where most people still don’t have quick and easy access to resources. Let’s be honest – how many cannabis products, services and growing-tech solutions were unbeknownst to you before attending your first trade show?
The conferences and trade shows are a macro-celebration, and there’s never been more fertile ground for financial success through experiential marketing.
You need to get in on the action! Just like any business investment, cannabis industry events can either be a financial loss or a pivotal moment in your success, depending on your marketing strategy. We at All Aces Promotional Staffing have put a list of promotional ideas together to get your creative juices flowing, but first, here are two points to consider:
- Logistics: A good event staffing agency will not just provide you with incredible talent but also help you sort out the event logistics, whether that means arranging your equipment rentals and travel accommodations, securing permits for outdoor promotions, or sourcing your branded materials. Sometimes this is all we’re hired to do, and that’s totally fine! This is a great option if you’re covered on booth duties, but could use some help with behind-the-scenes coordination.
- Long-term investment: Before we go into the specific ways you can create brand experiences with visitors and other exhibitors, let’s address the money concern. Event marketing will definitely involve additional costs, but it’s the only part of your program that will drive consumer engagement which leads to sales. Can you afford to cut out the one expense that has an almost guaranteed return on investment?
Assuming the answer is no, here are those foolproof ideas……
- Food & Beverage demos: There’s no experience like one you can eat or drink. But how can you hand out cannabis edibles without breaking laws, event rules and getting masses of people stoned silly? Legal CBD products are a no-brainer, but you can also market THC products by handing out yummy “virgin” snacks with recipes for how people can make a medicated version with your strain of cannabis. If you hand them something that tastes good, they’ll be enticed to learn more about your brand.
- Street teams: Promotional opportunities aren’t limited to trade shows and expos. It’s legal to hand out flyers for an event, or samples of a legal product, but just like any type of guerilla marketing, there may be some restrictions involved and logistical research needed.
- Lead Generation: Thanks to all forms of digital marketing, people know their email address is highly coveted…..and they also don’t like disclosing personal contact information to strangers. Instead of just having a clipboard at your booth that people may or may not sign, your staff members can engage with people in the crowd and get them to respond to electronic surveys or give over their business cards in exchange for a chance to win a contest
- Phone Charging Station: Giving people what they need is the easiest way to win them over – and phone charging stations will keep them stationed at your booth for a while, with all of your swag, samples, info and even a neon display where phone outlets are. You might be competing with another company that’s doing this but that’s ok, there are certainly enough dying cell phones to go around.
- Assembling Vape Equipment, 101: Some of the newer vape trinkets can make people feel lost in the world of canna-science. I once observed a CBD shop owner struggling to demonstrate how to use a Yocan Stealth device (so many little parts, and I thought rolling joints was complicated). Offer demos at your booth, or even have a contest to see who can assemble the device the fastest. The winner gets a free product or accessory, of course after joining your mailing list….
These are just some of our ideas. Stay tuned for more and CONTACT US for more information (or just to say hi)!