Higher Ground TV Crashes Adweek With Irreverent Cannabis Campaign

Hollyweed, CA: Higher Ground TV launched a “Marijuana vs. Cannabis” campaign at AdWeek to bring awareness of the benefits of legalization. Parodying Rolling Stone’s acclaimed “Perception vs. Reality” campaign of the 1980s (Fallon McElligott agency), the new ads instead use the words “marijuana” and “cannabis” to juxtapose the past history of Reefer Madness with the new era of legalization.

Each ad highlights a different aspect of the evolution of legal cannabis; the first ad shows a dirty bong opposite a modern vaporizer (a CannaCloud, the Keurig for Cannabis), with statistics on changing attitudes – and intake methods. The second ad compares headshops to recreational cannabis stores, emphasizing tax revenue, and the fact legal stores check IDs.

“While support for legalization is at an all-time high (65%), the vast majority of people haven’t really experienced what legal cannabis looks like,” stated Higher Ground Editor-in-Chief Michael A. Stusser. “These ads highlight safer growing methods, the millions raised in tax revenues and the medical benefits of pot. Our goal? National legalization – and decriminalization. Oh, and to promote our new talk show…”

Higher Ground is a new web series that spotlights the emerging canna-culture through humorous clip-show monologues, celebrity interviews, on-the-street field pieces (with periodically stoned correspondents), and parodies. “It’s The Daily Show meets Good Morning America….” says Stusser, “just with a giant bong on the desk.”

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FqsOWTkHVrw&w=560&h=315]

Previous Higher Ground projects have included a “Comedians in Cars Smoking Cannabis” parody, an ad that ran in states voting on legalization last November (“Cannabis Clicker”), a weedWatch campaign, and a re-mix of Cheech & Chong’s famous hitchhiking scene from “Up in Smoke.”

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPUBjbsSVA8&w=560&h=315]

“We’re using traditional formats like talk shows and ad campaigns and parodies to highlight modern cannabis culture,” said Stusser. “I think it’s important to explore marijuana with a sense of humor to truly reach, inform and move the masses.”

Five “Marijuana vs. Cannabis” ads were released this week for AdWeek, with another five to run for AdWeek London and AdWeek Latin America and AdWeek Europe. The ads are running on Facebook and other social media sites, as well as MJ Channel One and in print in the MJ Green Pages and alternative weeklies.

Cannabis isn’t just about getting as high as a kite. In additional to the legalization taking place across the country, cannabis is leading to mind-boggling medical breakthroughs, innovative products and inventions, as well as celebrity brands involving health, lifestyle and beauty. From gourmet edibles to Marijuana Moms to a growing number of seniors embracing cannabis for arthritis, pot culture is becoming pop culture. Rather than shy away from this emerging movement, Higher Ground explores it with an entertaining- and professional – attitude.

From Reefer Madness to Cannabis Connoisseur: Support at all All-time High.
Fifty-five million Americans currently use marijuana (22% of the population), and over half of all adults have tried it. Support for legalization is at an all-time high (nearly 65%) – as is the support for medical marijuana (88%). Of the 55 million cannabis users, a majority of those (52%) are millennials. Surprisingly, 54% of the adults who use pot are parents. The hard-hitting and topical Jon Stewart-brand of journalism is also more popular than ever (including The Daily Show, and alumni Stephen Colbert, Samantha Bee and John Oliver). Higher Ground embraces this approach – using advocacy journalism along with a sense of humor to bring the cannabis culture to the masses.

Ninety-five percent of the U.S. population currently lives in a state with some form of legal access to marijuana. Recreationally legal in nine States (including California, the sixth-largest economy in the World), another 29 states (plus D.C.) have laws on the books for medical marijuana. This cultural zeitgeist is not only increasing viewing limits, it’s bringing it audiences in key demographics who want smart, informative and entertaining programming about the people and products behind modern-day cannabis.

Cannabis is the fastest growing industry in the country. 
Marijuana sales in North America reached $7 billion in 2016, and is expected to jump to $21 billion by 2021. Higher Ground highlights the innovations, trends, and ganjapreneurs involved in this Green Rush. Whether it’s breaking political news on legalization initiatives, innovations in cannabis health, or talking to the artists and entertainers inspired by the wacky weed, Higher Ground has cannabis content covered. And, of course, Higher Ground explores and embraces the elevated aspects of getting high. Whether it’s Stoned Symphony Nights, demonstrating the Keurig for Cannabis, or highlighting the World’s 1st Marijuana Drive-Through, we hit the high-lights.


Who Will Become the Starbucks of Pot?

NEW YORK: During a typical Fourth of July weekend, 1500 Esperanza St., a whitewashed deco warehouse in the Boyle Heights district of East Los Angeles, is deserted. But this year, a line snakes down the broken sidewalk out front and wraps around the bend of Union Pacific Avenue, as 4,000 people suffer the searing heat for an event called the California Heritage Market.

While many cities boast farmers markets, this one is unique: It’s the first in California—and likely the entire country—devoted exclusively to pot.

Here, some 50 growers proudly peddle their homegrown weed, not only in the form of dried flowers and buds but also the myriad products that can be concocted from them—from cooking oils, tea and candy to ointments, sunscreen, even soft pretzels.

Cheryl Shuman surveys the crowd with satisfaction. Not only did she help organize the event, but her own brand of weed—Beverly Hills Cannabis Club, a favorite of celebrities with gated mansions up in the Hollywood Hills—is the most recognizable product there. Scratch that. “We were the only branded product there,” she boasts during a phone interview a few days later.