CBD Business Development is a very niche part of the business development world. It’s unique in all it’s specialized needs for marketing, labeling, & sales. Legal and FDA requirements to navigate and avoid crossing the wrong line. Barcodes to wholesale agreements to online stores to sample packaging. If you aren’t well versed in manufacturing, especially with regulated products, developing a successful CBD business takes a lot of time, energy, and dotting i’s and crossing t’s. Then you have to make sure you have a product that meets your needs as well.
This is a huge topic, so we’ll be doing just a high level overview here. We’ll break down this into a few sections and expand on these later. For now, let’s dive in and cover the basics.
In the ever changing world of CBD and hemp, marketing is the unicorn to capture. Digital marketing is hard, even with new regulations. CBD, especially from hemp, gets lumped in with marijuana currently and this doesn’t help. The good news is that standard marketing strategies work for this industry just like any other. The user base is broad and there is room to have niche markets within the greater CBD/hemp market. Advertising is a whole other game right now and the hardest part of a marketing strategy. Make sure you do the right market research for your product and business.
We have created a bit of secret sauce here in being able to combine several digital platforms to create ads with. Places like Snapchat allow even marijuana ads to run, while places like Google and Facebook allow very specific types of CBD ads to run, and not all the time. Analog advertising is it’s own game and there are plenty of opportunities there, including things like billboards. The good news is that if you don’t want to use a firm like us to help wade through the digital ad world you have another option. You can contact CBD focused websites and publications to get in front of people.
Packaging & Design
These are very important, even in the B2B side of sales. Cannabis and CBD have enjoyed their wild-west era. That time is coming to a close. Now, competition is growing and each product and business needs new ways to differentiate from each other. What makes your product and business special? You aren’t the only one and there are wait lists for new companies to enter every single market in the US. Other countries are moving to legalize cannabis and hemp and this will only increase the businesses in the market. You MUST stand out. I’ve talked about how your brand matters, and this is no different. Your products need a brand. Make sure your product and company stand out.
E-commerce & Websites
E-commerce is a bit of an issue because banks like to go back and forth on offering support. However, with companies like Square creating beta programs for credit card processing, things are looking up. Plus it looks like some laws will change to allow CBD businesses to process with usual banks soon. Your website is key to your success. Even though paid advertising can’t be used as much right now, things like SEO and having a place to send people is key to your success at marketing. Even if you have a CBD service you don’t think you need a website for, get a website. Things like SEO take a long time to build and you should start now.
Regulations & Legal
CBD business development puts you into a regulated industry. The FDA, states, and feds all have rules their own and regulations You should welcome them. With things like the vape pens coming under scrutiny, regulation can be a good thing because it shows who is doing things by the book and who isn’t. It’s a lot to deal with and it’s not all buttoned up nicely yet, but it’s something you can navigate with the right tools and resources. We always bring a lawyer in when we work with clients in regulated industries, it’s important because not knowing isn’t a good reason. Make sure you have legal support, or work with a firm who does.
Now that we’ve covered everything at a high level, let us know your questions in the comments, or drop us a line to see if we can help you with your business. Hopefully this gives you a highlight of the important sections of CBD business development