Advertising Cannabis & CBD Products on Facebook & Google
Canada takes the lead in federally legalizing marijuana. Existing cannabis companies are looking into a newly rising prosperous market. As exciting as it seems, there are some major setbacks in the cannabis industry, specifically advertising cannabis products on Facebook and Google. Giant organizations like Facebook & Google do not seem to be joining the green rush. Companies who have worked with Facebook & Google before to advertise their brand and are hoping to do the same with cannabis products are sadly mistaken.
Unfortunately, the media juggernauts have classified cannabis and CBD related products as illegal, dangerous, and harmful substances. As such, any advertisements promoting the use of or cannabis, in general, is strictly prohibited. Violating their terms may result in your account being suspended. It’s clear that the present methods to cannabis advertising are not Facebook and Google but rather influencer marketing, squeeze pages, direct deals, and ad networks.
Products Compatible With Facebook & Google’s Policy
It isn’t entirely impossible to advertise cannabis-related products on the big media platforms. The defining question that determines whether you are compatible to advertise on Facebook and Google is whether you can sell your product to have no relation to cannabis.
A strong connection between your product to marijuana will automatically land you in the red zone. As an example, CBD supplements. Even though CBD is legal in the US, Facebook & Google deems it to be an illegal and unsafe substance and therefore, would not allow any ads whatsoever.
In contrary, if you were selling fertilizers to help grow cannabis then that would be acceptable as you can pitch it to not have a direct relationship with cannabis. The approach of your ads in this instance would be to provide plants with nutrition via your fertilizing products. Any mention to consuming cannabis and/or endorsing cannabis farming will result in your ad getting taken down or possibly worse.
The Solution: Expanding Beyond
On the occasion that you operate and/or distribute products strongly correlated with cannabis then it’s best to not even consider Facebook and Google. Advertising cannabis products on Facebook and Google is taken very seriously and strictly prohibited. You’ll never be able to get past the approval process abiding by their terms and conditions. Thankfully, there are several avenues which you can take to get your brand out into the market.
1. Influencer Marketing
A very powerful way to advertise when the influencer(s) is somewhat related to your niche. Influencer marketing is often seen most powerful in the gaming and beauty vertical as those are evergreen niches with influencers all over the place. Having an advocate who knows their own audience is key. If they believe in your brand, they will sell it.
The cannabis industry is relatively small and still has a lot of potential to grow. The same can be said about cannabis influencers. There’s only a handful of them out there. With scarcity comes rarity. Finding these influencers will require vigorous work and cause a headache.
Luckily, there are creative agencies that assist you through the whole process. One example would be Puff Talent. Puff Talent, is an influencer marketing agency specializing in cannabis. They do all the hard work for you by providing cannabis influencers, creating/distributing sponsored content, and getting your brand to the right audience. Through agencies like Puff Talent, you can dismiss advertising cannabis products on Facebook and Google.
2. Squeeze Pages
These pages are often referred to as presell pages and landing pages. The purpose of these pages is to walk potential customers to your checkout page and convince them through the process to ultimately buy your product.
There are various angles of approach here. For instance, your page can display your product along with the benefits it provides the user or you can go for a more creative approach and expand on testimonials to create a story. There is an infinite number of angles to squeeze pages. Test each one and move forward from there.
Upon establishing your page, you will need to drive traffic to it. You can freely advertise your page on Facebook & Google as long as it does not promote cannabis use or allow users to buy your products on that page. To be on the safe side, ensure that your ad(s) promote the content on your squeeze page rather than your brand and then use your squeeze page to promote another page that promotes your brand.
3. Directly With Publishers
Not advertising cannabis products on Facebook and Google isn’t the end of the world. Cannabis enthusiasts have established websites dedicated to the special plant and a perfect example is Leafly.
With 13.5 million users every month Leafly, alone, can provide the necessary impressions for many campaigns at a large expense. Giant companies have no problems with this as their advertising budgets tend to be very high. But, for smaller companies and even individuals like affiliates, it can be devastating.
The downside to working directly with publishers is the fact that you’re putting all your eggs into one basket or a few baskets. Rather than working with one or a few publishers, it makes sense to spread out and diversify to many publishers as possible.
4. Cannabis Ad Networks
Ad networks are the solution to help you spread and diversify your brand. They are perfect for both advertisers and publishers. Unlike directly and manually dealing with each publisher, ad networks collect a larger variety of publishers focused in a specific vertical, in this case, cannabis.
A leading ad network that currently stands out among the rest is Puff Network. Puff Network makes cannabis marketing easy and effective, as it should be. They help eliminate risk, confusion, and stress associated with cannabis advertising by assembling all the best advertising opportunities and possibilities within and outside of the industry.
Think of ad networks as another Facebook or Google but on a smaller scale, a scale made for you. To maximize brand awareness it’s ideal to work with more than one network. By doing so, you will exploit all the opportunities and possibilities of cannabis advertising.
Advertising cannabis products on Facebook and Google is very limited if you’re tunneling your vision. But, if you look over the horizon to influencer marketing, squeeze pages, direct deals, and ad networks the possibilities are endless.
As the world moves forward, more people will be open up to accept cannabis as a plant rather than a drug. Eventually, large corporations like Facebook and Google will change their policies. But at this present time, we only have a select few channels to advertise on. It’s up to us to maximize all avenues and adapt to work with what we have. Happy advertising!