Today, July 1, 2015, marks a historical change for the state of Oregon. In November of 2014, Oregon voters approved the legalization of marijuana for recreational use, which goes into effect today. Previously, medical marijuana had been legal in Oregon, as well as in twenty other states and the District of Columbia. Oregon now joins Colorado, Washington and Alaska as the first states in the nation to legalize marijuana for recreational use.
As marijuana laws, and the voodoo surrounding it, lift, as will the diversity and scope of the market. With the legalization of marijuana in four states and movement towards federal decriminalization, marketers may find latent opportunity in this new market. Pot leafs and tie dye won’t be as effective with professionals, moms, and the upwardly mobile and active smokers who have previously kept their habits hidden.
That’s not to say that head shops and party vibes won’t continue in the era of marijuana legalization, however branding efforts will need to be tailored to connect with unique audiences.
Branding Marijuana for Target Audiences
As with any product, targeting is key to the success of the brand. When marijuana becomes an accepted and legal product, we’ll see unique marketing and branding tactics to capture different segments. According to Adweek, women buy 85% of all household and consumer products. Upon the legalization of marijuana, this opens the door to market to these spenders.
Distinct branding geared towards women, professionals, the health conscious, the motivated stoner or the creative artist type will be essential. These demographics want to buy products designed and marketed for them. Whether you’re selling organic edibles, diamond vaporizers, marijuana cat food, a pot beverage or any of the other marijuana products that will inevitably launch, strategic marketing and branding will be essential for longevity in the marketplace.
Stay Informed When Branding Marijuana
With the legalization of marijuana for recreational use, marketers, legislators and consumers enter unknown territory. Along with legalization comes laws defining use, advertising restrictions and packaging standards. In treading these waters, marketers should stay informed and ahead regarding state laws and how they affect their clients and alter marketing strategies accordingly.
As more states legalize marijuana and recognize its benefits, an explosive growth industry emerges. Whether or not you enjoy a good toke, marketers prepared for branding marijuana have the opportunity to reap green rewards.