CBD Advertising: How To Effectively Promote Your Brand In This Pandemic

Marijuana Cannabis bud and leaves

It is an understatement to say that the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) has changed the way people live their lives all throughout the globe. Entrepreneurs have been pushed to move their businesses online, and many employees are now working from home.

Facebook says they’ve experienced record app usage across the globe. Messaging has increased twice in one month (this was between February to March), voice and video calling has more than doubled in WhatsApp and Messenger, and so many more.

And with more people resorting to online stores and social media to connect, buy, or run their businesses, now’s the best time more than ever to promote your CBD brand online.

CBD Targeting For COVID-19

It is an understatement to say that the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) has changed the way people live their lives all throughout the globe. Entrepreneurs have been pushed to move their businesses online, and many employees are now working from home.

Facebook says they’ve experienced record app usage across the globe. Messaging has increased twice in one month (this was between February to March), voice and video calling has more than doubled in WhatsApp and Messenger, and so many more.

And with more people resorting to online stores and social media to connect, buy, or run their businesses, now’s the best time more than ever to promote your CBD brand online.

To show you the trend in CBD search these days and before the pandemic, we looked at Google Trends:
buy cbd graph
Buy CBD graph

The picture on the left is the “Buy CBD” search term trend between June 2019 to December 2019, and the one on the left is the trend for the same search term between January 2020 to Present (June 6th as of writing). These are both for people with ‘Anxiety & Stress’ as a common interest. Both are data from the USA audience.

When you look at it, the trend in the left is not consistent, it does have certain months where it shoots up, but it is not sustained. We’re guessing the extreme demand/interest for CBD in September (2019) is because the autumn season started, a time where people are more likely to feel depressed.

On the right, the trend has been sustained from March to April 2020 and has shot up again between May to June. We can recall that the lockdown and the massive increase in COVID-19 positive cases in the US happened during March and April. It was down again in the first week of May but shot back up in the second or third week.

cbd search term graph
CBD search term data in blue

And in the “CBD” search term, we can see that CBD search peaked more times and higher this year than this time around last year. You can see an increasing trend this year as well compared to last year’s which stayed at about the same level (50). These illustrations are just two of the interesting trends in the CBD search ever since the pandemic began.

With all these opportunities, you might be asking, how can you advertise CBD on Facebook or Google? We’ll let you know in the following sections.

Can you advertise CBD oil online?

Advertising CBD has its own challenges and limitations, and it’s *almost* impossible to advertise it on social media platforms and even on Google. The Facebook CBD policy on advertising does not allow recreational and medical marijuana on its platform, and that includes other related cannabis properties.

CBD advertising on Facebook, Instagram, Google, and others have a lot of restrictions or maybe not allowed at all, such as the case on Facebook and Google.

However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t advertise at all. It all boils down on how you explain your CBD products to your audience without directly mentioning CBD or cannabis in your content.

With some filtering and luck, you will be able to advertise your products on bigger social networks and search engines like Facebook and Google. As a matter of fact, we’ve been able to do it ever since 2016 (not with luck but through a proven system), and this is with some of the most famous CBD brands we have been lucky to work with for a long time.

Below are a few of the Google ads we’re running for one of the brands we’ve been working with.

hemp ads campaign

Where can you advertise CBD?

As earlier mentioned, there are a lot of platforms that may allow you to advertise with certain restrictions. But with search engines (e.g. Google, Bing) and giant social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Reddit, Snapchat, Pinterest, and Instagram, medical marijuana and CBD ads are not allowed.

There are other places where you can run a CBD oil advertisement with zero to little restrictions, but your audience and reach is not as big or as wide as with the above-mentioned platforms. Below are other forms of advertisements or promotion you can do with CBD even during COVID-19:

  • Native Ads
    This form of advertising allows you to advertise on relevant content seamlessly, so it looks like the ad is part of the content (e.g. blog post) itself. Facebook and Google also have native ads but there are other ad networks that allow you to show your ads as ‘content recommendations’.

    They can show your ads at the foot of each article, on the side blending in with other website content, so your ads will most likely lead to a ‘story’ instead of a website containing products. If you’re not careful, your audience may feel like you are deceiving them into buying something, thus, trust with your brand can be affected long term.
example of native ad
  • Influencer Marketing
    More people have been into influencers lately because they reflect more honest reviews and real-life experiences that mirror what your audience is going through. Celebrity endorsements are too polished and are oftentimes unrealistic, and that’s why big brands are also investing into influencers.

    However, influencer ads may cost you a lot of money but not produce actual results. Your actual reach also depends on how big the influencers’ networks are, and as with celebrities, YouTube star endorsements also come at a hefty price.

  • Podcasts Ads
    Podcasts ads just recently became mainstream, but they’re very helpful in creating brand awareness or brand recall/recognition. They are seamlessly integrated into the show so they don’t sound like they’re scripted or unauthentic, and the same level of attention is given to your ads since it flows freely into the content.

    Just like influencer marketing, a higher level of trust is also one of the reasons why podcast ads are effective. The audience trusts the recommendations of their favorite podcast hosts, so highly relevant podcast shows may help you increase your conversions.

Facebook and Google Cannabis Advertising

Each of the above-mentioned platforms has varying policies, but as for Google and Facebook, you may be able to advertise if you get past the initial stage, which is basically sending your ads to their team. But it comes with certain risks because you could get your account banned from advertising or even from the platform itself.

Over the years and with so many trials, we were able to minimize the risks and determine the best approach to protect our clients’ brands and prevent their accounts from getting banned, while being able to advertise their products and giving them exponential ROI on their ad spend.

It took us years to master this process and we have also built an expert CBD marketing team while doing so. This allows us to operate with agility and efficiency across Facebook and Google. We don’t recommend that you DIY this process because you not only put your brand at risk, you could also end up wasting your resources on something that you don’t actually love or like doing.

If you want to know how we make CBD ads happen on the biggest online platforms and if you want to see increased ROI on your ad spent, book a FREE consultation with us and we’ll let you in on the action!

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