How B2B email marketing is different for the cannabis industry
While there are many basics of B2B email marketing that don’t differ from one industry to another, there are some nuances you need to know in order to successfully promote your cannabis or cannabis-related business.
Below are some of the key things to keep in mind when creating email marketing campaigns targeting licensed cannabis companies. To prepare for success, you can get your free cannabis industry email marketing certifications through the Cannabiz Media Email Success Academy and learn everything you need to know to create and send campaigns that get great results !
Spam flag words and images
Many people think that using the word “cannabis” or images of cannabis in email marketing messages is a ticket to the spam folder. At Cannabiz Media, we have not seen this correlation in the millions of messages sent to cannabis license holders through the Cannabiz Media License Database over the years.
However, if you’re still concerned about using “cannabis” in your content, there are some steps you can take to limit any potential risks. Of course, you can avoid the word “cannabis” or images of cannabis in your email marketing messages altogether, but doing so can significantly hurt your results.
In marketing, you always want your messages to be as clear as possible, so omitting cannabis-related words and images does the exact opposite. If you don’t use these words, your messages can become confusing.
To be on the safe side and reduce the risk of your messages ending up in the spam folder, don’t use the word “cannabis” in the subject line. Also, consider the context in which you use the word “cannabis” and any industry slang words in your news content.
Bring away: Words make up only a small part of email service providers (ESPs) spam algorithms, but if your message is filled with risky words, they might just take notice and mark your messages as junk.
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Definition of the message target group
Every company wants to bring their products and services to cannabis companies, and that creates a problem. Cannabis companies receive a lot of email messages every day, and a lot of them are completely irrelevant!
In fact, cannabis companies can receive so many irrelevant messages that they start deleting messages without opening them or mark them as spam. Both of these actions can affect the deliverability of your future email messages, so you don’t want that to happen to your messages.
Because of this, I can’t stress enough the importance of identifying your audience and segmenting your email marketing lists so you only send messages to people who are actually interested in what you have to say .
For example, imagine your business sells a product for outdoor growers and you want to send an email marketing campaign to grow license holders via the Cannabiz media license database. Rather than sending all grow license holders a promotional message for your product, targeting only outdoor licenses would be a much better strategy to get the best results and protect your future email deliverability. You can do this with the Cannabiz Media License Database license filters.
Any license holder who doesn’t grow cannabis outdoors will not be interested in your message, and their lack of engagement with your message (or worse, their negative engagement by blocking you as a sender or marking the message as spam) will hurt that Deliverability of all your future messages.
Bring away: The more targeted you can be, the better for cannabis industry email marketing.
GET YOUR CERTIFICATION: Take the Cannabiz Media Email Success Academy Email Marketing Audience Specialist Free Online Certification Course to learn how to find the right people to send your email marketing campaigns to, how to target your Tailoring content to your audience and how to create an effective email marketing strategy.
Once you’ve identified your audience and segmented it into hyper-targeted email marketing lists, it’s time to start thinking about how email message content differs in the cannabis industry. Keep in mind that cannabis companies receive a lot of email marketing messages every day. Even if you send relevant content to the interested audience, your message plays an important role in your success.
Keep in mind that this doesn’t just apply to copywriting – although I recommend working with a B2B email marketing writer who has experience in the cannabis industry. This also applies to what you offer in your messages.
You have to give recipients something of value, or they won’t bother reading your messages — let alone heed the call-to-action in each message!
Think of it this way: when a cannabis business owner opens their email inbox and sees 10 new messages from companies trying to sell something and 10 new messages from companies sharing useful, valuable information, which messages do you think the recipient will open and which ones will they delete without opening them? If you said open the non-Salesy messages and delete the others, you’re right.
Not only do you need to do more than just continually send messages to cannabis companies that are strictly self-promotional, but you also need to ensure that the content of your messages makes it incredibly clear to each recipient that the message is meant specifically for them.
Start by segmenting your lists into hyper-targeted audiences, then write personalized content for each message that focuses on the niche audience that will receive it.
Personalization means more than adding someone’s name to the message greeting. That means the content, offer, images, and call-to-action are all created for a very specific audience. Think about what you want to communicate, then modify it for each audience to make it as individual as possible. How to get the best email marketing results.
For example, a packaging company that sells its products in industries other than cannabis might be able to send the same email marketing message to prospects in all 50 states. That may not be the case in the cannabis industry, as each state’s packaging laws vary.
A better strategy would be to ensure that in each state, potential customers only receive email messages about packaging products that state and local laws state and local laws allow them to use. In other words, you must have a solid understanding of the legal cannabis industry to be an effective email marketer.
Bring away: Don’t just sell every email marketing message you send out. Nobody wants an inbox filled with ads, so add value and personalize your content!
GET YOUR CERTIFICATION: Take the Free Online Email Marketing Content Specialist Certification Course to learn how to write and design email marketing messages that get the results you want.
Results, Commitment and Strategy
How recipients respond to the email marketing messages you send is extremely important. If few recipients open your messages, click links, file them in folders, and engage in other positive ways, ESPs will think you’re not sending content people want. They’ll think you’re not segmenting your lists into targeted groups and personalizing the content of your messages for each audience.
As a result, your reputation as a sender goes down and fewer of your messages reach the inbox. People in the cannabis industry get a lot of messages every day, so it’s very important that you track the results of your email campaigns and base your future strategy on those results.
Fortunately, there is a unique and easy way for B2B cannabis industry email marketers to do this!
When you email cannabis license holders through the Cannabiz Media License Database, you can add custom engagement tags to each recipient record after each campaign is sent. When people open your messages and click the links in them, you know they’re interested in the content you’re sending. If they don’t open or click, they probably aren’t interested.
Using this engagement data, you’ll know who to remove from your list to keep it clean (and protect your future deliverability), who to follow up with more email campaigns, and who might be eligible for receiving a sales pitch is accessible.
You can also use additional data in the Cannabiz Media License Database to drill down to build niche audiences and find more of your ideal prospects based on the demographic profiles of your most engaged email recipients.
The bottom line is that you can plan your next messages and move people down the marketing funnel effectively when you use the engagement data at your disposal.
Bring away: Stop sending emails to people who aren’t interested in your products, services, or content because of their commitment to your email marketing campaigns.
GET YOUR CERTIFICATION: Take the free online Email Marketing Data and Lead Scoring Certification course to learn how to track results, score leads, and qualify leads using the Cannabiz Media License Database.
Key takeaways on how email marketing is different for the cannabis industry
The rules of email marketing are the same in the cannabis industry as in any other industry. However, there are some things you should pay even more attention to when sending B2B email messages to companies that receive dozens of sales messages every day.
You need to be mindful of each recipient’s time and make sure your messages are more targeted and interesting than your competitors’ messages. Follow cannabis industry email marketing tips and best practices and your email marketing campaigns will get noticed in crowded inboxes for all the right reasons, and your messages will continue to land in inboxes for the future.
Get your certifications from the Cannabiz Media Email Success Academy to become a recognized expert in cannabis industry email marketing! Just click on the links below to sign up. All courses are free, online and for self-study:
Want to see how you can get better email marketing results for US cannabis and hemp license holders and international marketing by subscribing to the Cannabiz Media License Database? Schedule a demo and see how a subscription can help you achieve your business goals.