Cannabis Companies Can Earn Positive Media Coverage And Attract New Business

By Bill Bongiorno

Earning positive media coverage by being a source to the media builds credibility and visibility for cannabis companies. Being quoted in a newspaper, magazine or being a guest on TV as an expert source carries a lot of weight with the public.

The media acts as a third-party endorsement. It’s also the best and fastest way to reach a mass audience.

Here are some ways for cannabis companies to earn positive media coverage:

  • News releases – even simple news sent to local media can result in coverage.  For example, a cannabis company announcing a new deal that involves a local company. These two pieces of information can be shared with local regional newspapers and business journals.  These also will find their way on the Internet. Earning positive media coverage will aid search engine optimization to get found by potential consumers and investors.
  • Interviews with reporters covering cannabis are another tool for cannabis companies to be quoted in news stories. Reading current cannabis news and paying attention to who the writers are is essential.  There is cannabis news on a daily basis and cannabis company executives can offer to be expert sources supplying information, guidance and opinion.  Often the writers contact information is available at media websites.
  • Byline articles are another great way for cannabis companies to help the investing public and showcase their financial knowledge.  If you have a regular newsletter or cannabis commentary you send to clients, rework it to get published to a wider audience as a byline piece or guest blog.  Writing articles and letters to the editor that get published in media read by a cannabis company target audience, positions the company as a thought leader.  It displays the value proposition to customers and investors.
  • Follow cannabis writers on Twitter and LinkedIn and interact with them.  Sometimes they post what stories they are working on and the types of sources they need.  This is another way in today’s social media world, to stay connected. It helps to build a relationship to say you’ve read their stories and comment on them. A retweet or sharing a link on LinkedIn and FB is always welcome, particularly with cannabis reporters.
  • Develop news hooks based on the time of year to earn positive media coverage.  With Halloween coming, a story hook on infusing the day with cannabis would be a good topic. When the Christmas season is upon us, a story about a gift that keeps giving, cannabis, would be cool, not to mention as a stocking stuffer.  TV loves these kinds of stories because it offers great visuals. This is another avenue for cannabis companies to gain some positive media coverage. Often having been quoted in the media and having had articles published will help cannabis execs get on TV.  Typically, TV follows print in the stories it covers. Look at the news of the day in print and offer to be a guest talking about a top cannabis news story.

By employing some of these media tactics, cannabis companies can be positioned as experts along with their value propositions. While increasing name recognition, credibility and visibility to attract customers and investors.  Think about earning positive media coverage for your cannabis company today.


 

Bill Bongiorno is President of Blue Chip Public Relations, Inc., a firm specializing in working with financial and alternative investment companies including the cannabis industry. 

 

Good Articles Aid Cannabis Startups

By Janet Vasquez

As more states legalize cannabis on some level, the number of new cannabis start-ups is growing.  So how does your start-up standout from the others? Investors looking for their next play or consumers searching for a cannabis product or service often can only differentiate one start-up from another by the articles it finds. Particularly in a new legal industry such as cannabis, an investor or consumer relies on the credibility of a media outlet as an endorsement of a source as serious and qualified

In the cannabis business, startups need to communicate they are reliable, dedicated to quality, and adhere to the other attributes of serious commerce. It’s even more important given the long history of the pot culture and the stigmas attached to it.

One of the most effective actions a cannabis company can take to prove itself to the market as a well-run business is through a thoughtful, well planned and executed public relations campaign. The power of the third-party endorsement that comes from being an expert source in media articles is a powerful tool.

An article in a local or national newspaper, or an interview on radio or TV drives investors and consumers to your product or company.  It begins the process of steering them your way by introducing you and having them want more information. You have the opportunity to tell your story, through a journalist.  It’s important to have your messages, talking points and quotes you’d like to see in a story ahead of time to get the best possible outcome.  Despite the constant political news climate, there is still real media traction covering the sector, including cannabis trades and mainstream consumer news media. Public relations coupled within a marketing/advertising program makes sense. A well-rounded media campaign should also news stories still capture the news and evolution of products and services in the cannabis industry.

Consider three different companies of similar size in the exact same market niche. One has no media exposure; the second has bought an ad in the town’s newspaper; the CEO of the third appears as the subject of a profile in the same paper. Who do you think is going to look best to a potential investor or customer?

Often a small, locally focused business, doesn’t need national exposure and a local news story does the trick.  With the Internet, even “local” stories have global significance in searches.  While an article in USA Today is great promotion and a boost to an ego, being profiled in a cannabis trade or recognized as a source in a local business journal also reaches your target audience.

So, the next time you’re wondering how you can reach new customers or gain more investors, remember where it is you go for information about options and reading through news articles when making decisions.  Those stories can include you next time with a quote, a picture or maybe even a profile.


 

Janet Vasquez is founder of JV Public Relations NY, a boutique healthcare PR firm working with medical cannabis companies.