Owner: Medical Marijuana
Campaign: Brand ambassadors
Agency: CMW Media
Duration: May 2016-ongoing
Although not FDA approved, many are turning to medical marijuana and cannabis products to treat their ailments. One such supplier is Kannaway, which markets cannabis nutritional supplements.
Many people don’t understand cannabis products and only think of illegal marijuana. Therefore, the chief tactic when marketing Kannaway’s products is education, says CEO Blake Schroeder.
"We are not a drug company, so we can’t make medical claims, but we can educate people," Schroeder explains. "We say, ‘No, this is not marijuana. No, you’re not going to get high. But it does come from the cannabis plant, the part of the plant that’s federally legal.’ Once people start to understand that, they are super interested and want to try it out for themselves."
Utilizing brand ambassadors
The company uses a brand ambassador method to distribute the supplements to communities. This way, people are hearing about the products from people they know and trust. Kannaway has about 7,000 ambassadors around the U.S.
"We don’t spend a ton of money on advertising," Schroeder notes. "Instead, we have an army of brand ambassadors. We teach them about cannabinoids and the benefits, and then reward them to make product sales. They’re out there telling the story and introducing it to people in their community, all over the country."
This method allows people to get in on the ground floor of a growing market. It’s for people who want to be involved, but don’t have the desire or money to "move to Oregon and start their own hemp farm or open a storefront," Schroeder says.
A particular focus is put on the emerging research about cannabis and its benefits for the human body. As researchers have started to uncover the power medical marijuana can have on diseases such as cancer or anxiety, they are also looking at other parts of the cannabis plant and finding what it can do for the body.
"There’s so much research going on at the government level, university level, and around the world about cannabinoids," Schroeder says. "We share with them the research happening around the world."
Kannaway also relies on Dr. Stuart Titus, the CEO of its parent company Medical Marijuana. Titus helps educate people about its products and the science and research around them. The company also holds biannual events where people can learn more about cannabis and Kannaway’s products.
"We’re basically sitting at the end of a prohibition in our country," Schroeder explains. "There is so much opportunity for people to get educated and involved in the industry and get our products out there."