Tag Archive for: cannabis business pr

The best cannabis PR agency can make a world of difference in marketing your business and boosting sales. But how do you know who is the best cannabis PR agency for you? 

While there are plenty of good cannabis PR agencies out there, it’s likely one is better for you than others. Let’s presume for a moment that all the PR firms for your cannabis business all have deep cannabis industry experience, so how do you tell them apart? These are features all top cannabis PR firms should have. 

Target Audience

The first question you should ask yourself is how well does your top cannabis PR firm understand my target audience? Do they have experience reaching your ideal client or customer? This is vitally important for you to understand because it will make all the difference when you ask your PR agency with helping you reach your business goals. This is critical if you have a new product or you’re a B2B cannabis company. For consumer cannabis brands, look for agencies that have broken new ground in cannabis, especially since standing out in the media sometimes means reaching deep into niche audiences, you’ll want a top cannabis PR firm that also has experience in other verticals, or at least has team members with a broad range of experiences. You’ll also want cannabis companies that have successfully placed cannabis products in mainstream outlets. Talk to your PR firm to see what their strategy for placement in your Tier 1 outlets will be, and see how each firm differentiates itself regarding your strategy. 

Social Media and PR Together

One of the biggest mistakes entrepreneurs make is attempting to harness all social media channels at once, expecting them all to bring in revenue simultaneously. This could not be any further from the truth! Each channel caters to a different best client and the content should reflect that client type. Notice, sometimes the best channels for your company aren’t the channels making the headlines, and some channels are more useful for client and customer relations and some channels are most useful for media relations. Let your social media and PR agency work together to help you prioritize and ensure your messaging is consistent across the board. The best cannabis PR firms understand how to work your social media channels into a PR strategy that attracts your clients. You may also want to incorporate your PR firm to help identify social media influencers too. Ask your top cannabis PR agencies how they evaluate influencer relationships. It may well tell you how they will approach media relationships too. 

Targeted Content Approach

The best cannabis PR agency will not only know how to talk about your business; they’ll also understand what your best customers want to read about it – which means their content will speak directly to the target audiences. From informative blog posts that apply to your cannabis customer to the strategic use of press releases, you want your target audience absolutely clear when creating cannabis industry content. The top cannabis PR agencies also understand the multitude of cannabis industry regulations and can advise you on messaging that keeps you out of hot water. Ask your cannabis PR firm for 2-3 content headlines in order to get a sense of their positioning for your brand. 

Business-to-Business Approach

For best competitive intelligence services, best cannabis PR agencies typically have a firm grasp of who might be best for your business, and who you best interact with daily. This means they can help you find success no matter what industry you operate in – which is why best cannabis PR agencies are so beneficial to have at your disposal! If your cannabis industry business targets other businesses, then you’ll especially want a team who understands the history of cannabis, so your company represents itself well, even to those who have been in the cannabis industry for a long time. Ask your top cannabis PR firm what other companies in your same stage of growth have successfully done, and ask them to make a non-industry and an industry comparison. 

 

So if you’re ready to grow your business through effective communication, earned media and promotions, then it’s time to reach out to one of the top cannabis PR firms today!

2022 promises to be another intense news year and while there is no shortage of news stories, there IS a shortage of journalists; fewer journalists means fewer stories. With the mid-terms and a potentially all-consuming COVID news cycle, cannabis (THC and CBD) are no longer securing media coverage simply for BEING a cannabis company. So it’s more important than ever that marketing and PR develop campaigns that do more and go further. That means cannabis CPG brands need to think bigger and bolder. With that in mind, here are our 3 ways cannabis PR accelerates your business goals AND media coverage.

[6-minute read, 3 minute listen]

Cannabis Business Goal: Secure Investors and/or Prepare for IPO

 

This may very well be a great year for cannabis companies trying to raise funds or even IPO. But now that there is very little first-mover advantage left, it’s more important than ever to invest in brands and branding. This means really leaning into your target market and expanding the lifestyle your CPG product delivers to your target consumers. For brands at this stage of growth, we’re deeply encouraging these brands to consider partnerships and campaigns with purpose-driven initiatives. In  2008, Blackrock CEO Larry Fink made major waves when he said “to prosper over time, every company must not only deliver financial performance but also show how it makes a positive contribution to society.” And in he continues to double down on this, as Blackrock highlights social contribution in its investments.

But it isn’t just institutional investors who are eyeing social contributions, it’s consumers too. The biggest generation since the baby boomers and their little brothers and sisters, the Gen Z’ers are all looking to connect with brands who illustrate their responsibility to society. And according to Zeno’s Strength of Purpose report, consumers are 4.5x more likely to recommend a brand with a strong purpose. And lest you think it’s just young people attracted to purpose, the same report says those over 74 are more likely than any other generation to purchase from brands with purpose.

Investors love consumers, and they REALLY like customer loyalty and growth, so if you’re looking to improve your standing with VC or investors, 2022 is your year to take your purpose-driven initiatives to the next level. But it doesn’t stop there, but committing to purpose and executing internally and externally, you’ll have more opportunities to receive positive press coverage. Consider this – in 2021, there were about 1.9 million (non-press release) articles about cannabis. And the top topics were regulatory-based. Next came petty crime and manufacturing. If you had talking points on any of those in 2021, your media opportunities were much better. There is a finite amount of media coverage on any topic; strategic PR helps you cross over. Now consider the 6.8 million articles about the environment last year, the top 3 subcategories were climate change, energy, and decarbonization. Sustainable investing is in the top 10 as well. Imagine if your brand were to tie purpose into one of those top environmental topics, along with those top cannabis topics. Your media opportunities would increase by ten fold! Purpose-driven initiatives are but one way cannabis PR can speed up your brand goals AND media coverage

 

Environment Media Coverage

These are the topics the media ALSO covered when discussing the topic of the environment in 2021

 

 

 

 

Cannabis Media Coverage

These are the topics the media ALSO covered when discussing the topic of cannabis in 2021

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cannabis Business Goal: Product in More Retail Outlets

There just isn’t enough shelf space in dispensaries these days. And yet retails have a difficult time differentiating themselves, so a lot of dispensaries rely heavily on price discounts, which affects your cannabis CPG brand’s bottom line. Instead of getting into that rat race of product discounts, use PR to develop distinctive partnerships with your dispensary while at the same time helping the dispensary sell your product because of consistent PR coverage. Not only does PR open doors and differentiate your brand, but it also tells the dispensary that you’re committed to building a brand that will stay in demand. You can use PR to develop attention-getting budtender and community campaigns, too, that can accelerate your brand AND media coverage. There are so many ways PR can strengthen the brand-dispensary connection.

Not only that, but consistent PR coverage will really help to decrease the time it takes to secure a deal. Think about it-if you have room for 1 more brand and you have 10 to choose from, what’s top of mind? What will sell, of course. As it turns out, a lot of what makes a product attractive on the shelf also makes it attractive to the press. So don’t waste the branding and product development dollars invested – activate them with PR. Plus, retailers know, the only thing stronger than an independent endorsement is a referral from a friend, so make sure those budtenders see your PR coverage so they can include that information when they’re suggesting your brand, “ABC magazine just wrote about this last month – they loved it! It’s been flying off shelves!” that sounds like a great way to make your PR budget go further.

Cannabis Business Goal: Attract Top Talent

The struggle is real in 2022. There is a lot of change happening in the job market, including at the senior management level. According to the Harvard Business Review, while mid-career employees between 30-45 have the highest resignation rates, the age 45+ employees, also had higher resignation rates in 2021 than in 2020. 49% of U.S. executives reported a much higher turnover in 2021, according to the Society of Human Resource Management. The cannabis industry isn’t immune to these challenges. According to a recent mg magazine article, “The uptick in job openings has been observed at the top and bottom rungs of the industry, from hourly workers to executives, and it’s happening in every state with some form of legalization framework,” Recruiting and turn-over are expensive, regardless of the role. Cannabis PR can accelerate your recruiting goals AND media coverage

But brands can use PR to attract the highest talent. Returning to the topic above about how purpose plays a role, Deloitte reports purpose-driven brands have 40% higher workplace retention. Take that 40% reduction in turnover costs and add it to your PR budget. If your company is looking to attract top talent, but you don’t quite have the budget for the best and brightest, consider using PR to secure speaking engagements for your top-tier executives-ambitious people love opportunities that put them in the spotlight. But, you can’t promise what you don’t have – this is a long-term goal as speaking slots tend to fill up 6 or more months in advance. So if talent acquisition costs are eating into profitability, PR can help. Connect your talent recruiter and your PR agency together and let the magic work.

 

There are so many strategic ways to use PR to accomplish your business objectives. Working with your PR to accomplish business goals – and setting corresponding KPIs, sets the stage for the success you really want. Contact us today if you’d like to talk about your business objectives.

What is a top cannabis firm anyway? How important is it that someone else thinks a PR agency is great? What YOU need to know is if a leading cannabis firm is right for YOU. If you are leading a cannabis business or are trying to grow and develop an existing cannabis brand, one of the most important decisions you’ll need to make is choosing a leading cannabis industry PR firm that understands your business objectives. As the industry explodes and cannabis becomes more accessible in more and more states where it is legal, many cannabis businesses are searching for an agency with whom they can develop a long-term, successful relationship.

To help you make the right choice for your business, we’ve put together a list of qualities you should look for when scouting a PR firm. By following these helpful tips, you’ll be better able to find the best firm for you and your business.

Does The Firm Have Experience In Your Field?

When you are seeking out a top cannabis PR agency, you want one that combines a strong knowledge of the fundamentals with experience in your specific field. A firm that has worked in the cannabis industry is one that understands the challenges your business faces due to the patchwork of state-level laws regulating its production, marketing, and consumption, and one that knows how to appeal to your target audience. The last thing you want is a firm that doesn’t know Facebook’s policy about advertising cannabis on its platform, or has outdated assumptions about the consumers who might be excited about your product.

Does The Agency Maintain Strong Relationships?

It’s important to determine whether the cannabis PR firm knows the major players in the cannabis industry, if it has preexisting relationships with influencers and important publications, and whether it can put you in touch with the consultants and other experts who can help take your cannabis brand to the next level. Having access to a PR team’s vast network of professionals can be incredibly beneficial to your business, so it’s worth asking who they know as well as what they know.

To put it simply, you want a PR firm that is more than just a database — you want a team that has ongoing working relationships with industry insiders and the other cannabis industry personnel who can be your entrée to more opportunities down the road.

Is The Firm The Right Size For Your Business?

You should seek out a cannabis PR firm that compliments the size of your business, one that offers you all the resources you need to flourish but also the personalized attention that your company deserves. If you own a small business, you may not need the resources of a 100-person firm. But you also might require more work than a single freelancer can provide. Finding that balance is critical.

What Is The Staff Like?

Since it’s common to work with one group as you explore PR firms, and another team when you sign with an agency, you should ask questions about the makeup of the team you’ll be working with. Ask each person you’ll be working with about their professional backgrounds and experiences, inquire about their responsibilities as part of the team, and find out why they’re interested in the cannabis field. Lastly, make sure that you have the opportunity to consult with senior-level executives at the firm and confirm that they will be available to provide strategic advice when needed.

Does the Firm Offer Integrated Services?

You should seek out a PR firm that offers an array of services, including earned media (such as press coverage, social media mentions, quote tweets, shares, and reviews) and owned media, also called content development (which encompasses blogs, studies, vlogs, podcasts, and more). You should also ensure that the team has the ability not just to develop content, but to do the hard work that ensures this content is meaningful to your target audience: researching, conducting interviews, and writing in an impactful way.

Does the Firm Work in a Timely and Efficient Manner?

You should also consider whether the firm takes the initiative and puts proactive plans in motion in a timely and efficient manner, rather than waiting around for you to approach them. The last thing you want is a PR team that doesn’t understand your business or your goals, doesn’t regularly strategize to help you accomplish those goals, and makes you reach them yourself.

What is the Turnover Rate for Employees of The Firm? What About Clients?

The average rate of turnover between the agency and their clients will give you an excellent idea of how much other companies trust the agency with their business. How long do their professional relationships usually last? Even if you are only signing a limited contract, would you be able to continue the relationship under a renewed contract? You should also ask what the firm’s employee turnover looks like. Low turnover is always a good sign that the firm is a place where employees enjoy working. Happy employees are better for your business, as they will likely be more invested in your business strategy and in helping you succeed. And less turnover also means that the firm won’t be cycling people in and out of your account — people who may not be familiar with your business and its goals.

What’s The Cost?

Like any businessperson, you’re going to have to settle on a budget, and that budget will influence what services you can afford. It’s important to factor the cost of an effective PR campaign into your budget, as this could make or break your business. You should be upfront about your budget and ask other cannabis businesspeople and peers how much they pay for the services you’re seeking. Being upfront about your budget will ensure that neither your time nor the PR firm’s time is wasted.

Ask For References

You should review what other clients have to say about their experience with the firm. Do they express hostility, indifference, or enthusiasm for the firm? How other clients respond will tell you a lot about what kind of relationships the firm builds with its clients. If your peers don’t get excited about the agency, then it may not be worth your time.

Contact the PR Professionals of Avaans Media

If you are starting a cannabis business or are looking to take your existing business to the next level, contact Avaans Media today. We look forward to discussing your business objectives, introducing you to our team, and determining if we’re the right fit for your needs.