Today, companies are trying to outplay the competitors with new marketing tools. Digital marketing is a cutting-edge approach to implement the brightest ideas of any business. Wonder how your cannabis-related company might benefit from digital marketing? Let's get it right together.
What is Digital Marketing?
Digital marketing is a set of marketing activities that uses various digital tactics, tools and communication channels to reach your target audience where potential customers spend most of their time online. There are a number of tactics and tools that are used in digital marketing. For example, the company’s website itself and the online channels for promoting and attracting customers: Search Engine Optimization (SEO), online advertising, email marketing, sales funneling, content marketing, teaser advertising, Social Media Marketing (SMM), etc.
If your cannabis business takes advantage of different channels within digital marketing, you will have opportunities to interact with the target audience more efficiently and timely. Therefore, it leads to a constantly increasing the number of new customers while retaining constant customers who are loyal to your products.
Top Benefits of Digital Marketing
Why does my business need this type of marketing? How will it help my business? These questions are asked by both new and even experienced entrepreneurs. There are some crucial benefits that digital marketing will provide to your business:
- A wider target audience will become aware and knowledgeable of your products. These are your potential customers who are ready to spend their money on your products. Communicating and making contact with them could lead to higher sales and more profit;
- Potential customers will have quick and easy access to information about your goods or services. The sooner they are aware of your products, the faster they can buy them;
- Thanks to the various channels used for disseminating information about your company, you can be sure your products will constantly be on the minds of your target audience. This means that it increases the chances of them choosing your products when it is time to make a purchase;
- Potential customers will begin to recognize your products, study them more closely and perhaps recommend them to their friends;
- Digital marketing is cheaper than traditional advertising methods.
And, probably, the strongest argument: the results of a marketing campaign you can measure, analyze, draw conclusions and adjust further actions.
However, there are a few important things to remember about digital marketing. Let's call them features. Namely:
- No super-fast results. Be prepared for the possibility that success will not come immediately – be patient;
- Get ready to try many different digital marketing tools. It’s not as simple as configuring several tools and having them work stably – it does not work this way;
- Digital marketing is either an ongoing or nothing endeavor. Using a one-time approach does not work here. You must track changes in the marketplace and adjust your own marketing tactics.
Why Digital Marketing is Important for Your Cannabis Business
The main objective of digital marketing is business growth. On this path, it is important to set smart goals: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-limited. At the launch stage, the timing of the test must be clearly defined: you need to gather the initial data, feedback on the cost and traffic levels for 2-4 weeks. With the help of digital marketing, you can collect data about your target audience and form your expectations about your potential reach.
The objectives can be different: reach (increase the target audience by 20% in 3 months), act (attract 1000 visitors who are interested in your product), convert (increase site visitors into sales from 3% to 5%, get 5,000 participants in the promo), engage (increase the frequency of online purchases from 3 to 5 times a year). You need to constantly measure your smart goals and conduct a variety of tests. This is where digital marketing comes in handy as it serves valuable and important functions, which are determined by you and your team. Digital marketing can serve a variety of useful functions, such as:
- The more customers who know about a product, brand, service, the higher the conversion rate. A company’s image can be measured using different methods. You can check the general knowledge of the brand, consumer preferences, differentiation from other companies or growth of company shares;
- For many projects, education is the main goal of the company. In these cases, the actual content and the educational function become key;
- Conversion (site visitor to the customer). Usually, the sale itself is the most valuable. But besides that, it can also be used for sampling, pricing or determining the availability of goods in the nearest pharmacies, for example.
Digital Marketing: Essential Channels
The theory is good. But you still need to know how to put knowledge into practice. So, what channels are currently being used in digital marketing?
- Social networks
Facebook is the only social media with 20% of the entire global population registered! Companies are increasingly using social networks as a tool. And it’s all because, there, you can directly communicate with your customers, arrange polls, draws and share useful information.
- Website Blogs
People like to read up on new ideas and look for advice on interesting topics. Use it to promote your business.
- Start collaborating with popular bloggers
A big advantage of blogging—there is no direct advertising. Rather, information about your product will be perceived as useful advice.
- Mobile devices and applications
Without these, it is difficult to imagine a business operating with modern marketing tactics. We buy, sell, study and have fun using smartphones and tablets.
- Newsletter by email
Why not send out a newsletter to your regular and potential customers? If everything is done correctly, the results will pleasantly surprise you. For example, the online retailer cbdee highlights that their conversion rates increased significantly just after they implemented a new email marketing campaign. A couple of useful tips about emailing customers: experts say that they are more likely to open newsletters received from 6.00 PM to 11.00 PM. And the best days for emailing is on Mondays and Fridays.
- Another option is a contextual advertising
Costly, but you will begin to receive customers almost instantly. And if everything is done correctly, then high results will last for a long time. The example of such ads is Paid Targeting Ads on social networks like Instagram or Facebook.
It takes a lot of time but is cheaper than contextual advertising. And if you make an effort, this channel will consistently attract new customers to you. And do it for a long time.
This list includes the main channels cannabis companies are currently using to advertise their products and services. However, before launching any marketing campaigns, you need to do thorough research on conversions and markets. It will save you a lot of time and money.
Top Trends in Digital Marketing in 2020
Digital marketing is constantly changing. To be proactive, you need to know the main trends where digital marketing is heading. If you don’t follow the trends, you reduce the coverage and the number of references to your brand. Here are the main trends that are worth paying attention to right now:
- Shoppable posts (social commerce)
For a long time, businesses sought to attract customers to their online stores from their subscribers on social networks. Now, they no longer need to use this method. Social commerce is the purchase of products directly through promotions or advertisements on social networks. You do not need to leave the site or application. Posts such as these, through which you can place an order directly on the social network site, are not new. However, since the launch of Instagram Checkout in 2019, this has quickly attracted more and more attention from other companies.
Influence marketing has been a digital marketing trend for several years. It was so successful that many outstanding influencers now dominate marketing. It is no longer enough to send them a free sample in the hope that they will prepare a review for it. Rather, there are payment tables and price lists. “Influence” in social media is now a product and an expensive one. Instead of competing with global enterprises for top influencers, small and medium enterprises, instead, prefer to work with small and medium influencers. They bring better ROI and cost less.
- Impeccable and interactive emails
An email is still a viable option—the February 2019 ROI from email marketing was 3200%. Though, currently, using email templates similar to web pages is not enough. You need to make efforts to create stunning visuals with UX-oriented design.
The general trend of digital marketing is toward more personal relationships with target niches, but the means to create these relationships rely on automation and new technologies. But the heart of digital marketing remains the same: give people what they want and when and where they want it. Cutting edge technology simply opens up new paths to satisfy those needs.