This week’s Trailblazer is Dan Kilchenmann, of Cannibros, who’s mission is reviewing and rating licensed cannabis brands across Canada.
Questions with a Cannabis Industry Trailblazer
When did you first become involved in the cannabis industry and why?
We found our way into the cannabis industry in early 2021. It actually was a natural process as we were searching for products and found many of the reviews were artificial or fake. The desire for real transparency is shared among many passionate cannabis users which is why we decided to “review the industry” product by product with detailed, non-biased, systemized reviews.
What has been the biggest marketing challenge you have faced when working with cannabis companies/brands?
We’ve experienced a number of challenges and hurdles right from the start, but this would be expected in a new industry. One hurdle that required us to take a different approach was the monetization of certain traffic sources with partners who did not have the infrastructure to receive and track. However this challenge like many previous has been addressed with some out-of-the-box thinking, which is one of your most powerful tools if you’re jumping into the cannabis industry.
If you could change one of the current Canadian or American marketing restrictions on cannabis, which would it be?
Without a doubt the biggest hindrance to cannabis brands right now is the US dominance of social media platforms and networking websites. Profiles can be removed/suspended with very little information about what was done wrong (if anything). Due to the US laws residing on a State level compared to a Federal level makes expanding into those areas a challenge (but not impossible). We’d like to see some of these outdated restrictions and guidelines updated which would make marketing this industry much easier.
In your observation, what marketing techniques or channels have been most effective for cannabis companies looking to connect with consumers?
SEO all the way. For many of the reasons we just mentioned above. When you own the website, have good SEO rankings, you own the racecourse. Not Facebook or Instagram.
Are there any other Trailblazers in the cannabis industry that you follow?
We follow our primary competitors so we know what they are doing well and what they are missing.
What is one tip or piece of advice you would give to people looking to enter the cannabis industry?
Do your research first and pick a niche that is saleable and you’re passionate about. Just don’t say I’m starting a cannabis site… what does that even mean? Grow equipment, seeds, bongs, clothing, and cultivation, there is literally a thousand different ways to enter the market. So do your research and get ready to put in the work.
A big thank you to Dan for participating as this week’s Trailblazer! Stay tuned for another interview with a cannabis marketing Trailblazer next Thursday in the ADCANN blog.
Interested in working with one of these talented cannabis marketers? Check out our Agency Directory for a list of all the agencies that specialize in working with cannabis companies.