Advertising CBD Products: What Options are Available to Use?

So you’ve spent countless hours building your CBD brand, sourcing products, developing formulas, & designing a website. There’s only one issue: How do you advertise your products to consumers? In this article, I’m going to teach you the current best online methods to advertise CBD products.

Despite widespread legalization and projections on par with the dot-com boom, the legal cannabis industry remains challenging to navigate. This is especially true when it comes to marketing CBD oil online. One of the biggest hurdles CBD oil brands have to overcome is digital advertising.

Where can you advertise CBD products?

Google and Facebook are the biggest players in the digital ad arena. These two juggernauts offer brands a reliable way to drive traffic to their websites, allowing them to scale quickly and affordably. Unfortunately, both Google and Facebook (who also owns Instagram) classify CBD as a “dangerous product” in alignment with the DEA. As a result, these platforms can (and will) shut down any account advertising CBD products. In fact, almost every ad platform — like Amazon, Pinterest and Twitter — have similar restrictions, which leaves CBD brands with few options.

These discriminatory ad policies have curtailed e-commerce sales industry-wide. It’s estimated that 97% of cannabis startups fail in their first year, compared to just 20% of all small businesses.

Facebook CBD Advertising

Unfortunately, Facebook doesn’t allow any drug-related products to be advertised. You’ll find this in the ad policy, but there are ways around it.

Medical assistance advertisements are allowed, so if you found a way to fold assistance into the advertisement you may be able to sneak one by the Facebook ad regulators.

Advertising CBD on Twitter

Twitter doesn’t allow advertising or promoting illegal drugs, recreational drugs, or herbal drugs. That totally removes CBD as an option. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use Twitter as a marketing platform, though. Twitter’s ad policy only applies to paid advertising products. There are ways around this to simply promote brand awareness, without promoting actual products. Twitter is better suited as a customer interaction & support platform.

CBD on Instagram

Instagram has policies in line with Twitter, but they don’t seem to police them as much. We’ve seen a wide range of posts that technically shouldn’t be allowed, remain up. Instagram has also shut down accounts for posting items that others also have up. For the time being, Instagram seems like a viable option to promote your business, but shouldn’t be solely relied on as Instagram can shadow & perma ban accounts for seemingly no reason.

With influencer marketing, CBD brands partner with social media influencers in order to reach highly targeted and highly engaged audiences — without the red tape or the risk of getting shut down. Influencers are known to be some of the earliest adopters and best brand advocates in the holistic health and wellness space — eagerly buying, trying and advocating for amazing all-natural products that help them feel their best.

Working with influencers often generates a better ROI than digital advertising, too. With digital ads, your brand appears in a potential customer’s feed as they scroll through social media. Your brand’s message interrupts this person’s social media experience, and it usually gets ignored. (The average click-through rate for Facebook ads is about 1% and click-through rates for display ads are even lower.) But with influencer marketing, your brand appears in a potential customer’s feed as they interact with their favorite accounts. Your brand’s message fits seamlessly into this person’s social media experience, and it gets noticed. (The average engagement rate for micro-influencers is about 10%.)

The benefits of using influencer marketing to grow your CBD oil business are:

  • It’s a reliable way to increase brand visibility and reach potential customers on social media.
  • CBD brands can reach highly engaged customers that are interested in health and wellness products.
  • Trusted third-party reviews by influencers. Research suggests 90% of consumers trust recommendations made by others, even people they don’t know, over brand content.
  • Influencers create user-generated content that you’re able to leverage on your brand’s social networks.
  • Influencer partnerships can drive a steady stream of real followers to your brand’s social networks.
  • It’s an effective way to cultivate a grassroots network of brand advocates.
  • There is no risk of getting your account shut down.

Years ago marketers predicted that the advertising landscape would be more navigable for the legal cannabis industry. Sadly, little has changed. While we wait for Facebook, Google and the rest to get with the times, influencers have opened new doors for CBD oil brands to reach their customers on social media.

Do you have questions on how influencer marketing could work for your CBD brand? Click here to chat with a specialist at Sapling.

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