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Staying Original in Cannabis Industry Branding

Staying Original in Cannabis Industry Branding

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Find Your Niche Within the Cannabis Industry

Marketing any brand usually begins with a vision and goal. The goal is to make your brand shine, and this is usually done by answering four questions that are on every consumer’s mind. Always ask yourself: what are you offering, why are you offering it, what makes you different than your competitors, and why should we choose your product or service? Marketing your brand in a legal industry can be a challenge; getting the right target audience, setting your tone, exploring the appropriate mediums, and getting users to engage with your brand.

Now, let’s consider the challenges of branding when your market has varied federal and state rules regarding its legality. The cannabis industry falls into some interesting territory with the limitations and regulations for social media platforms, and with the existing content of cannabis critics. Let’s explore some ways to tackle branding in the cannabis industry.

Change what they’re saying

It’s time to change the conversation. With all the content in opposition of the cannabis industry out there, it’s your turn to enlighten and engage your readers with new and informative content. Educate your readers about cannabis, the evidence-based benefits, and be prepared to be responsive to any inquiries they may have. Writing blogs and creating organic social media content is a great start.

The hard sell on social media

Social media and its various platforms have differing regulations regarding cannabis content. The common denominator is that it is prohibited to advertise any forms of illegal recreational drugs or their paraphernalia. Organic content, however, if used in an educational or artistic style is authorized. Choose wisely when you decide on your content, and how you plan to work around the limitations, without losing your bottom line.

Think outside the advertising box

Displaying ads are a little easier when you have a completely legalized industry. The cannabis industry requires more legwork. To make up for the limitations of digital marketing, utilizing some old-fashioned methods may be beneficial. Advertise your brand by hosting educational events and speaker panels. Consult with medical doctors and gather the appropriate research underlining the benefits of medical cannabis use. Allow people to see the face behind your brand and let them know you have done your homework.

Know what you’re selling

If you are in the business of producing or dispensing cannabis, you should know more about the market and its respective products than your potential consumers. It’s suggested that you become the go-to expert regarding cannabis, its upcoming laws and policies, and its overall impact and risks. If you’re well-informed, this may just be enough to put you ahead of your competitors.

Keeping it real

The reality of branding within the cannabis industry is that you will occasionally hit some rough ground. Owning up to any issues with your marketing strategy, content, and targeting is your best bet. Be real with your mistakes and don’t think for one second that you are immune to setbacks. The truth is that the industry in question is brand new, and being open to trial and error allows you to learn from your mistakes.

As with all industries, maintaining a loyal client base and netting new ones is the goal. It’s up to you to be responsible with your content. Try and be genuine with your marketing strategy and always continue to educate and inform. If you are looking for ways to have your brand in the cannabis industry stand out, contact our specialized team at Herban Creative today!

License Requirements and Permits Needed to Start a Cannabis Business

License Requirements and Permits Needed to Start a Cannabis Business

License Requirements and Permits Needed to Start a Cannabis Business 2011 2495 Herban Creative

Are You Aware of the License Requirements Needed in the Cannabis Industry?

Looking to other countries, such as Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Norway and more – medical marijuana consumption has become legal. A quick Google search will bring you to a colorful chart of each country – and where they are at regarding the legalization of marijuana for recreational and medical purposes.

According to SevenFifty 1

, we can comfortably say that the United States may be following suit, as recreational use is legal in 10 states, 1 U.S. territory, and the District of Colombia, and legal for medical use in 33 states, 4 U.S. territories, and the District of Colombia. Both medical and recreational use, however, are illegal at the federal level. Where there’s legality, there is also opportunity.

If you are interested in starting a cannabis business, be weary of the license requirements and permits, collected by FindLaw 2

, on a state-by-state basis. We broke down key regulations for states in our area to help you better understand what to expect.

The Tri-State Area

For those considering opening up a cannabis business in the Tri-State area, there are discrepancies in licenses and permits if you are a retail marketer of marijuana, or if you are looking to run a dispensary. As with other states, there are limits and restrictions to how many dispensaries are allowed, as well at the actual size of the business location.

New York

The Medical Marijuana Program is governed by the New York Department of Health. You must be a registered organization, in which you are allowed up to four dispensaries. The manufacturing of medical marijuana is limited to indoor, enclosed, and secure locations within New York State. The Commissioner of Heath must approve the products in regulation, in addition to the routes of administration. The Department is not accepting any applications to register organizations at this time.

New Jersey

The Medical Marijuana Program is overseen by the New Jersey Department of Health. Alternative Treatment Centers (ATCs) are what the state considers licensed businesses in the production and distribution of medical marijuana. An ATC permit allows you to grow and dispense medical marijuana after two screening tests and a background check of all parties involved – including regular maintenance of your practices. At this time, there are six ATCs in the state and they are not issuing any more licenses.


The Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection supervises the Medical Marijuana Program. Producers and dispensary facilities of medical marijuana are licensed through an application process on an intermittent basis. On average, approximately 3-10 applications are granted licenses for both producers and dispensers. At the present time, there are nine licensed dispensaries in the state.


The Marijuana Business License is available for Cannabidiol (CBD) and medical programs. The Pennsylvania Marijuana Business Plan Package follows numerous templates for the business and operation aspects – all of which need customization to the various regions, for the bargain price of $8,259. In the state, there is a limit of 50 dispensaries with stipulations that include proof of funds, annual renewal fees, and a non-refundable application fee of $10,000. Applications are not being accepted at this present time.


As you can see, the license requirements and permit potential vary across states. Because we are still in an illegal zone at the federal level, there are some potential risks associated with producing and dispensing. Make sure you weigh your risks and prepare for the respective regulations of your state, including high application fees and management requirements that you must follow to become licensed.

If you are in the business of medical or recreational marijuana, the team at Herban Creative can help you establish your brand. Contact us today to see how we can guide your business to its full potential.

What Are the Rules When Advertising Cannabis on Social Media?

What Are the Rules When Advertising Cannabis on Social Media? 1800 1200 Herban Creative

Make Sure You Stick To These Rules When It Comes to Advertising Cannabis on Social Media

It’s clear that we are moving in the direction of more progressive times. If you are in the business of cannabis, it’s safe to say you should be looking at some prosperous growth over the next few years, no pun intended. And like any business – you are not excused from your digital footprint. Advertising cannabis on social media allows your business to reach your target audience, permitting further explanation of the benefits and rewards of using your products. Because we are working with marijuana on a commercial scale, it’s important to know the advertising policies and limitations of each platform according to Green Entrepreneur 1.

What is Pinterest pinning?

The limitation with Pinterest is using the platform for the commercial sale of cannabis. Advertisements which encourage or boost the usage of any form of illegal recreational drug is strictly prohibited. Fortunately, Pinterest does allow users to post advertisements promoting the health benefits of Cannabidiol (CBD) and hemp products. However, the only cannabis products deemed appropriate are the byproducts of CBD-only oils and hemp which do not contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Pinterest also permits organic cannabis content with a more artistic or educational nature.

What is Twitter tweeting?

Drugs and drug paraphernalia are out. There are some hard rules regarding drug use, dispensaries, accessories associated with drug use, and herbal drugs. Therefore, the use of Twitter to solely advertise your cannabis on social media may be more on the limiting side. Twitter does permit organic usage of the word “marijuana” and there are pages with marijuana themes in which users could tweet about cannabis use and culture. If the agenda seems more organic and it’s not just about the hard sale – promoting medical cannabis could be permitted as well.

What are we Snapping?

The rules and regulations are less clear when it comes to Snapchat. The one thing we do know is that any advertisements regarding illegal or recreational drugs and their paraphernalia are prohibited. You can take Snapchat out of the race if you’d like to run any cannabis ads on a social media platform. Like its other social media family members – content regarding marijuana and cannabis are found on Snapchat, but there is no solid promotion of selling cannabis and its byproducts.

What are we watching on the Tube?

Youtube is substantially more flexible than the others. There are no specifications regarding the advertisement of illegal drugs but it does dictate that dangerous or harmful content is off limits with a “not suitable” disclaimer. Sharing any content on the topic of medical marijuana use and its benefits is allowed – including cannabis material for documentaries, education, and artistic purposes.

What’s streaming on Reddit?

Reddit has more general guidelines in which the platform does not allow particular content. Any content that promotes illegal activities will include an advertising policy with a disclaimer stating that ads promoting recreational drugs and substances will not be tolerated. It does not specify if cannabis itself – medical or recreational alike – are prohibited. Promoting cannabis content and products in an educational and informative light should be okay. 

How’s trusty old Facebook?

Facebook appears to be on board with its other social media comrades. This means zero promotion of illegal or recreational drugs. It will carry your business page with cannabis or marijuana content if it’s tasteful, educational, and organic. If there is even a hint of a promotional nature – Facebook will put a stop to it.

What are we Googling?

Oh Google, why so serious? Dangerous products and services – including recreational drugs of the chemical and herbal form are a no. There are no clear indications if educational or artistic content on cannabis is acceptable in their policies either. It’s safe to say that advertising cannabis on this platform may be tricky. However, Google Bloggers writing on your behalf could publish content related to the herb, so long as there’s no promotion or encouragement of dangerous and illegal content.

Where does this leave you?

We are living in very interesting times. With cannabis, we are somewhere between glorifying the medicinal herb and struggling over its national legality. While most social media platforms may not be on board to promote cannabis today, with continued exposure on the subject we are certainly moving in the right direction.

If you’re in the business of hemp and need help defining your brand, contact us for help. At Herban Creative, we’re skilled in branding, SEO, design work, and social media. We can create content for your brand that informs consumers and drives sales. Contact us today to learn more!

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Turn Your Cannabis Logo Ideas Into A Reality

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What Differentiates Hemp from Marijuana?

What Differentiates Hemp from Marijuana? 1800 1200 Herban Creative

The History of Cannabis Use in the US

The History of Cannabis Use in the US 1800 1200 Herban Creative

A Look Back at the History of Cannabis in Our Country

Cannabis is a trending topic in America these days. It seems like every day you hear more of your coworkers and friends discussing the CBD oil that dissipates their stress and combats their post-workout soreness. In the news, you hear more about approved marijuana laws and talk from more government officials promising future legalization. Of course, cannabis wasn’t always the positive talk of the town. Throughout its presence in the United States, cannabis has gone through a wild ride, and the opinions and laws around it have been ever changing. Take a look back at the history of cannabis in our country and see how far the popular plant has come since its earlier days.

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The cannabis timeline doesn’t end here. 2019 is expected to bring new changes on cannabis laws from states all over the country. The cannabis plant has come a long way since its introduction to the New World, and it still has a long way to go.

Looking for more news and updates in the cannabis industry? Check out the rest of our blog today!


What Cannabis Business Owners Need to Know About Tax Deductions and Section 280E

What Cannabis Business Owners Need to Know About Tax Deductions and Section 280E 1800 1436 Herban Creative

The Impact of Cannabis on a Business’ Tax Deductions

It’s critical any cannabis entrepreneur understands that the cannabusiness world is different from any other business. It’s not just the business model or supply chain, it’s the tight wiggle room from several laws and regulations on all sectors of business. Filing taxes on a cannabis business is certainly a part business owners must pay close attention to. According to Forbes, due to unchanged federal laws on marijuana and strict guidelines by the IRS, tax deduction laws are quite unique to the cannabis industry. It’s important business owners know and understand tax section 280E, as it directly applies to them.

Tax Section 280e

This tax section requires that cannabis businesses file federal taxes under this tax code. All Schedule I and II trafficked controlled substances are directed to, and according to the federal government, marijuana falls under this category as a Schedule 1. This includes the growing, buying, and selling of marijuana. Essentially, this tax code means cannabis businesses need to pay taxes on all of their revenue. Therefore, making them ineligible from using business expenses as tax deductions.

In its totality, section 280E states: “No deduction or credit shall be allowed for any amount paid or incurred during the taxable year in carrying on any trade or business if such trade or business (or the activities which comprise such trade or business) consists of trafficking in controlled substances (within the meaning of Schedule I and II of the Controlled Substances Act) which is prohibited by federal law or the law of any state in which such trade or business is conducted.”

What Does This Mean for Cannabis Business Owners?

Simply put, business owners in the cannabis industry pay tax on their gross income. Since marijuana is a Schedule I substance, this section prohibits them from the tax deduction benefits of a typical business owner. State legalization hasn’t wavered the federal regulations of marijuana, thus putting cannabis businesses under extreme scrutiny by the IRS. Previous cannabusiness owners have faced harsh repercussions for disobeying the tax act and failing to efficiently fill taxes.

The punishments are costly, and the IRA is certainly paying attention to the financial workings of all cannabis businesses. To the business owners in this industry, you need to abide by section 280E and thoroughly understand your legal tax expectations to clear yourself and your business from an attack by the IRS.

There are a lot of hoops to jump through in the cannabis industry. Even business owners from the states with seven years of recreational legalization aren’t fully experts. Many mistakes have been made in industry due to the high regulations surrounding marijuana. For the vets and the newbies, pay close attention to the laws that surround your industry, they’re changing all the time. Through attention to the fluctuating laws on regulations, you can learn how to market and craft your business accordingly in this highly-censored industry.

For assistance on marketing your business, contact us at Herban Creative. We have all the marketing and digital experience necessary to grow your cannabusiness from the ground up.

cannabis networking

Networking Tips: Growing Your Cannabis Related Business

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Canadian Legalization

Canadian Law and the Legalization of Marijuana

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Cannabis Beer: Cheers to THC-Infused Beverages

Cannabis Beer: Cheers to THC-Infused Beverages 1500 1000 Herban Creative

All You Need to Know About Cannabis Beer

Out of all the cannabis infused products on the rise right now, cannabis beer is gaining a ton of attention. The flood of craft breweries in the United States proves the popularity of the diverse alcoholic beverage. Although, the statistical preference of cannabis over alcohol in legalized states suggests beer companies face a tough competitor. Beer sales show a decrease in these states while cannabis sales remain on the rise. So, it seems safe to say that breweries adapting cannabis into their beers may be on to something.

Is it or is it not beer?

For starters, this cannabis-infused beer isn’t actually beer. Federal rules stand against mixing alcohol with marijuana, therefore these beer tasting drinks won’t actually have any alcohol in them. Right now, there’s a strong emphasis in place on flavor for the brewers already selling in Colorado, California, and now, Washington. The idea is to keep beer lovers on beer rather than losing them to cannabis altogether. At the same time, brewers want their consumers to love the beer because of its taste, not solely for its traces of marijuana. Statistics show that alcohol drinkers in states with legal recreational marijuana use are already switching their preferred substance. By including cannabis in beer, beer companies are meeting the demands of the consumers. Plus, this new product offers beer drinkers a way to drink beer without the typical hangover effects.

So what’s in it exactly?

Every cannabis beer isn’t created equal. Some companies infuse with hemp oil while others use CBD. Every beer has hops in it, but the difference in cannabis beer is the lack of fermentation. Therefore, it’s not actually alcoholic, nor is it technically beer, but it’s still intended to taste like it. Recently, the makers of Blue Moon beer are making headlines with their carefully brewed THC-infused drink. Only available in Colorado, this beverage was created to give the similar buzz-like feeling you’d get from beer.

Will you still “feel” it?

While THC-infused beer is just arriving from concept to completion, it’s likely it could be a big hit for cannabis users and beer drinkers. Whether or not you “feel” it depends on several factors, like what beer you drink, what’s in it, and how much you consume. The creators of THC Blue Moon beer says you feel the effects at the same pace as a normal beer. The best part? No morning headache or signs of a hangover. Comparing the side effects of beer versus marijuana, the THC-infused beer is referred to as a more health conscious options for consumers.

A look ahead

It’s safe to say there will be less hangovers in the future thanks to cannabis beer. Even more, with the increased popularity of craft beer in the United States, it’s highly possible cannabis beer may be the next big thing for breweries. However, it could be ways down the road. Even with the legalization of recreational marijuana in more states, there’s no telling when, and if, federal law will change. For now, it will only be sold in approved dispensaries.

Lately, there’s a lot of talk whether or not cannabis beer can transform the nature of social drinking. With its anti-anxiety effects, cannabis beverages could ease the anxious feeling in social settings, and possibly even lessen the number of beverages one consumes during social drinking. On a similar note, beers infused with CBD could also positively affect consumers. The very popular cannabinoid derived from marijuana has gained a lot of recent attention in the wellness industry, and for good reason. It has zero psychological effects, and has the ability to calm the user and ease anxiety without altering the users state of mind. Ultimately, if created correctly, it could be a good product for those anxious in social situations.

Ultimately, the beer industry looks to stay alive alongside the flourishing cannabis industry. Cannabis beer could be a healthier vice for those who use alcohol to calm their nerves. Also, it will decrease the risks caused from regular alcohol consumption. All in all, only time will tell the direction of this new market, but rest assured cannabis beer will only become more common as time goes on.

If you’re a cannabis related company and looking to find your place in the industry, allow us help you out. Our team at Herban Creative are seasoned digital natives, and we specialize in everything from branding to SEO, web design, and social media. Contact us today so we can make your cannabis business stand out.