This week’s Trailblazer is Ashley Coco, Head of Marketing at Dynaleo, a producer of the highest quality cannabis-infused edible gummies.
Questions with a Cannabis Industry Trailblazer
When did you first become involved in the cannabis industry and why?
I entered the cannabis space in 2019 after spending the majority of my career in the fashion/apparel industry. The idea of joining an industry that was newly legal Nationally was exciting; there was so much potential for innovation and cannabis education and I was so excited to get the opportunity to be a part of it.
What has been the biggest challenge you have faced when working with cannabis companies/brands?
Messaging. The ability to communicate product attributes to consumers is incredibly difficult in cannabis. At Dynaleo, we focus on innovation and creating cannabis infused soft chews and gummies for cannabis consumers looking for their perfect dose. It is difficult to message product attributes and explain what certain cannabinoids can do for consumers when language and imagery in marketing materials are so heavily regulated.
If you could change one of the current Canadian or American marketing restrictions on cannabis, which would it be?
To start, we need to increase the 10mg THC per pack on edibles. While I agree, a 10mg THC per pack limit on edibles may have been a good place to start, Health Canada needs to consider allowing products in market which reflect what consumers are looking for. In addition to this, we should have more discretion when it comes to educating consumers about regulated cannabis products to help destigmatize cannabis use!
In your observation, what marketing techniques or channels have been most effective for cannabis companies looking to connect with consumers?
Email marketing has been very effective as of late, especially given the unpredictability around social media! In person events are also great as they give you the opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals and bring your brand to life. Aside from this, I think it’s so important to get out in market and talk to budtenders and consumers to get a sense of what’s out there and what resonates with them.
Are there any other Trailblazers in the cannabis industry that you follow?
On social media I like Anna The Cannabinista (@cannabinista.co) and @therebelmama. In the industry, I’ve had the opportunity to work alongside some incredibly talented and cool individuals I’ve learnt so much from! LaVern Morris who taught me so much about creating engaging retail spaces and immersive events, Jess Moran on the PR and influencer side, and Rick Meslin and Michael Krestell who have a ton of experience and knowledge of the cannabis space! In cannabis there are so many creative, talented, and knowledgeable people you could learn so much from.
What is one tip or piece of advice you would give to marketers looking to enter the cannabis industry?
I hope you like a challenge! The cannabis space is still very green (pun intended), so most of our strategies and product launch initiatives remain in flux. The key is keeping an open mind and allowing yourself to be flexible! In addition to this, know your market and your customer to ensure your marketing and messaging is as effective as possible!
A big thank you to Ashley from Dynaleo for participating as this week’s Trailblazer! Stay tuned for another interview with a cannabis marketing Trailblazer next Thursday in the ADCANN blog.