• Insights
  • 10.19.2018

But Why Are We Running?

Garus Booth

Some are ready, others are scrambling, and the rest are just trying to launch unique cannabis content that will achieve their goals.


The industry is buzzing with content creation and test-trials of campaigns created according to very grey, semi-enforced regulations. Trying to “stand out” in a multi-billion dollar industry has triggered some alarms warning us about our decisions when it comes to video marketing. With so many unanswered questions, key players are choosing the pragmatic approach to video content – and amen to that.

Nobody doubts the market’s potential, but the numbers are only predictions & they’re based on the black market.

As lovers of hard data, we advocate waiting to see the true growth of this market and how Canadians are reacting to legalization – information that easily dictates which video content your brand should invest in. We also recognize that taking a proactive approach is equally important. So how can one continue in this catch-22? One brand is taking this challenge head-on by instilling their branding and content with current audiences while appealing to future recreational cannabis segments. Tokyo Smoke is a design based brand that infuses their values into every aspect of their customer’s life from coffee to housewares. This holistic perspective lets them interact through cannabis daily as they learn more about the developing market. Check out their latest video How Will You Spend 10/17?


Originally over 100 physical stores were proposed, but this promise was adjusted to no earlier than April 1st, 2019 (and our hope is running thin for that date too)

As a result, online buying is the consumer’s only choice thus leaving behind their personal information. Who cares? Likely people that don’t want their employers knowing they partake, or those paranoid about the repercussions of a digital trail. Not everyone is worried about “the man” recording their every move, but anxiety is a large factor in buying decisions and proper video strategy can conquer these fears. For example – some brands transform fear into knowledge with videos showing how to navigate their platforms, explaining which data is recorded and how safe your personal information is.

The Rules They Are Uh…Changing?

The final and in our minds, the most important issue is the simple fact that the rules are completely subject to change. In one province, cannabis lounges are outlawed; in others, you can smoke on the street. One city you can’t be near a residential building; in another, all legal pot stores are banned. How do you speak to an emerging industry and how do you educate an audience that might not be familiar with your product when regulations are unclear and convoluted? Brands are looking toward educational videos to provide a path that allows you to share your values while positioning yourself as trustworthy experts in the industry. Bonus: if done right, your content will live longer and won’t be outlawed by contradictory rules.


A Fork in The Road: Strategy vs Quick Content

Working with select cannabis brands and chatting with dozens of others has shown us two major approaches: Fearlessly putting money and resources into video content fast – or – analyzing the market, competitors and other verticals before diving in. In such a young industry it’s important to recognize that its goals and challenges have major similarities to the tech industry. Both heavily rely on video content to express how their products are used, how they affect us, what product is right for our needs and educating the public about new developments.

While cannabis is new to the challenge, tech companies have conquered the learning curve by developing proper video marketing to answer these questions and work within their limitations – a lesson cannabis should pay attention to.


Our Advice: Be The Tortoise, Not The Hare.

Instead of running at full speed, the tortoise takes it’s time, paces itself and takes calculated steps. By putting efforts forward to understand how the industry is taking shape, we can help overcome blind spots and understand what’s acceptable, what’s not and what’s going to move the needle. Sure, we give props to the hare for their speed in pushing content, but we can’t help but admire the tortoise for their cool, calculated disposition – a trait we’ve witnessed success with time and time again.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>