Media Archives - Green Market Report

StaffStaffJune 30, 2020
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4min8330

HBO Max has become the latest production company to use cannabis products as a marketing tool. The company is partnering with Sunderstorm’s Kanha Cannabis Infused Gummies and online cannabis marketplace Eaze to launch a collection of character-inspired CLOSE ENOUGH edibles.

“Close Enough, is a surreal animated comedy about a married couple, their five-year-old daughter, and their two divorced best friends/roommates all living together on the east side of Los Angeles. The series is from the creator  JG Quintel, creator of the Emmy Award-winning “Regular Show” and begins streaming on July 9.

“Kanha’s partnership with HBO Max is an exciting opportunity to showcase our delicious, award-winning gummies to a brand new audience,” says Cameron Clarke, CEO of Sunderstorm the parent company of Kanha. “We can’t think of a more playful, fun collaboration to announce to our fiercely loyal fans. We’re thrilled to partner with one of entertainment’s biggest media giants to help bring the adult characters in their new show to life through our gummy flavors and profiles.”

The Close Enough collection is inspired by each of the adult characters in the series. The products are marketed in for moods like relax based on the character Josh, get things done like Emily, get lost in thought like Alex, or be a social butterfly like Bridgette.

“It has been so thrilling for my team and I to create a campaign that feels so authentic to Close Enough,” said Peter Sherman, SVP of Program Marketing at HBO Max. “When crafting any campaign, our aim is always to create an experience for the audience that feels genuine and exciting, and this partnership with Kanha hits the nail on the head. We’re so excited about this one and we can’t wait to see how fans react.”

Starting on June 29 and through the end of July, while supplies last, Close Enough Cannabis-Infused Gummies are available at over 20 select, licensed retailers in California. They will also be available for purchase and delivery via Eaze in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego throughout the month of July, while supplies last.


Kaitlin DomangueKaitlin DomangueJune 11, 2020
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6min4720
Several cannabis companies aspire to be luxury brands but without the proper creative talent, the marketing can fall flat. In the traditional consumer packaged goods market, the look and feel of a luxury brand are remarkably different from a middle-market brand and that can often be attributed to the hiring of a marketing agency that specializes in luxury brands.
The cannabis industry now has its own creative agency that was launched to specifically market luxury cannabis brands. The new ETHEREAL understands the specific DNA of luxury packaging and marketing. The founders are four creatives with an extensive background in the luxury and lifestyle categories – Creative Director/Designer John Mamus, Photographer/Videographer Pablo Aguilar, Creative Director/Writer Tod Brilliant, and Managing Director Masako DiDio.
“The cannabis industry is growing at lightspeed, but it has yet to firmly establish itself in the luxury marketplace,” says John Mamus. “The opportunity is massive, and we have the passion and experience to help the most forward-thinking brands take full advantage. ETHEREAL is nimble and purpose-built for creative excellence, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness.”
Mamus founded the boutique high-end creative agency MAMUS (mamuscreative.com) in 2007. With a focus on Luxury (automotive, private jets, textiles) and now cannabis, Deep Technology (low-earth-orbit satellites, augmented reality, sovereign identity, the blockchain, and digital assets) and Retail (high-end food, cosmetics). Pablo Aguilar is an award-winning photographer/videographer. Pablo and his team have created iconic images for brands such as Adidas, Fila, Vibe, Complex Mag, Fortune, Sports Illustrated, Snoop, and many more.
Tod Brilliant is a deeply experienced writer and creative director. Over the years, he has developed projects for larger brands like Amazon, Samsung, MTV, Converse, Microsoft, and L’Oreal. Masako Didio has an extensive brand and leadership experience with brands such as Maison Dior and Burberry. She has intellectual property and management experience through her work with MAMUS CREATIVE. No stranger to the cannabis industry, Didio has also worked with Asha, TSO Sonoma, Major, and Seven Vices.
The group will be applying the techniques gained from working with some of the most recognized and successful premium brands in the consumer world. They have worked with Mercedes-Benz, BMW Motorrad, Burberry, Fortune, Adidas, FILA, Dior, Whole Foods Market, Starwood Resorts and Hotels Worldwide, ICON 4×4, Flont, and Richemont.
Luxury branding and marketing aren’t just expensive looking pictures with skinny models. It’s about creating a feeling that emotionally touches the consumer. If successful, the consumer in turn feels like they deserve such a luxury whether their income supports the purchase or not.
Beyond the image work, Ethereal is a thoroughly modern outfit that combines emerging technologies and strategic intelligence with all the usual tools of branding like visuals, brand strategy, and public relations. Beyond the image, cannabis companies are also subjected to onerous restrictions when it comes to presenting themselves to the public. Ethereal brings to its client’s compliance and regulatory insight through their work with global pharmaceutical brands such as Pfizer, Novartis, Innocoll, and Astra Zeneca.
The company’s style is already setting luxury cannabis brands apart from its peers. Some of the agency’s cannabis industry clients include House of Saka, Van Doran, Major Flower, TSO Sonoma, D’Fleur, Seven Vices, Asha and Klaus.
“Ethereal represents the opportunity to augment one-stop solutions to the often vexing cannabis language in a crisp and forthright manner. While launching Klaus Apothecaire, John Mamus is the ringmaster, conceptualizing and solving the most challenging of conundrums in real time. I couldn’t have done it without him and his team,” explained Warren Bobrow, co-founder of Klaus Apothecaire and known globally as the Cocktail Whisperer.

AvatarHeather AllmanMay 30, 2020
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8min1210

The issues with cannabis and traditional media are not new. Buying ads, using social media, and other marketing avenues are closed. Paid media continues to … Read More…

If you wish to re-publish this story please do so with following accreditation.

AUTHOR: Heather Allman

PUBLISHER:  CANNABIS LAW REPORT

CLAB / Cannabis LAB, or Cannabis Law, Accounting, and Business —

FOUNDER: Robert Friedman 

EVENT REPORT: Meet the Press: Media & Cannabis, May 14, 2020

EXPERT GUESTS:

MODERATOR: Charles Felix, Cannabis News Florida

 

KEY DISCUSSION:

The issues with cannabis and traditional media are not new. Buying ads, using social media, and other marketing avenues are closed. Paid media continues to be a struggle while earned media seems to be the emerging area of opportunity. We have invited journalists, publishers and public relations experts to explore the landscape, debunk myths and talk about what is real in the world of cannabis and media.

KEY INSIGHTS:

Straight from the experts, here are the key insights that were highlighted at this May 14, 2020 CLAB panel; let the well-crafted, unique editorial submissions begin.

– According to Samantha Gross: “There must be a clear line between sponsored content or paid media, such as ads, and earned media (public relations and editorial content). With editorial content, you esentially receive neutral third party coverage of your product or services.

– According to Charles Warner: “Submit a story that’s balanced, accurate, and without bias and you’ll get my attention.”

– According to Jonathan Small: I want to print 700-800 word stories that accomplish one or a combination of the following goals: to inform, educate, inspire, entertain, or add to the conversation… but it also must be backed by facts and statistics for accuracy.”

– According to Durée Ross: Working with clients in CBD, HEMP, and CANNABIS, I discovered that while all three are essentially the same industry and in the same sphere, they are very different. This is due to cannabis being an illegal scheduled drug, while CBD and hemp are legal through the 2018 Farm Bill. Concerning social media, LinkedIn and Twitter are more professional and not as discriminating against cannabis content as Facebook and Instagram.”

 

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  1. For editorial or earned media, media avenues are indeed open for cannabis and hemp companies and services.
  2. You have to do your homework: know who you are pitching and know what they cover.
  3. You need to build a credible professional reputation with publications and editors when opportunities arise by being balanced, accurate and unbiased.
  4. You need to be flexible and creative— your media content must adapt according to the news or media outlet to which you are pitching.
  5. Do not tie your main business email address to a social media account. Take the extra step of creating an email specifically for each social media account; if your account is flagged, your professional business or credibility are not jeopardized.
  6. Paid media continues to be a struggle while earned media seems to be the emerging area of opportunity.
  7. An outlet’s earned media (PR) and paid media (advertising) must be balanced and work together to provide fair, unbiased content to their target audience or readership.

 

CURRENT EDITORIAL INTERESTS:

– From Jonathan Small at Green Entrepreneur:

“I’m interested mainly in how-to submissions, or content that provides a service. Editorial content must bring value to our readers.”

– From Samantha Gross at the Miami Herald:

“My main focus is on Florida stories, especially hemp licensing in Florida and new licenses. Of course, I am always interested in cannabis and CBD content. Just keep in mind that the target audience you are attempting to reach with your content should determine your target media outlet. “

– From Charles Warner at CannaTech Today:

“I’m drawn to innovative stories and stories concerning innovation, whether in hemp or cannabis. I want content that highlights new opportunities in business and outright addresses where these opportunities can be found. Focus your content on problems of any type that need to be solved.”

 

CONCLUSIONS:

Concerning cannabis, CBD, or hemp in print or social media, in order to successfully catch a news outlet’s attention, you must know the difference between PAID MEDIA and EARNED MEDIA, or editorial content.

Be original and innovative in your editorial content submissions.

Finally, generate editorial content aimed at the target audience of the media outlet to which you are submitting.


Video StaffVideo StaffMay 20, 2020
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3min4060

AxisWire, the first newswire distribution service and digital PR tech-suite dedicated solely to the cannabis industry, and Green Market Report (GMR), the cannabis industry’s source for credible in-depth financial reporting, have announced The State of Cannabis Media 2020 virtual conference.

The following people participated:

Jeremy Berke (Business Insider) Will discuss how brands can pitch directly to media if they can’t afford PR on a temporary basis
Terry Stanley (AdWeek) Will discuss the state of advertising and how ad budgets have been cut
Heather Cabot (Forbes & author of The New Chardonnay) Story focus and what readers are looking for during the pandemic
Warren Bobrow (Forbes) Story focus during the pandemic
Javier Hasse (Benzinga & El Planteo) Story focus during the pandemic and pitching writers directly
John Schroyer (MJ Biz Daily) Talking about pitching cannabis media
Rosie Mattio (Mattio Communications) Crisis communications and staying active in the media as other companies go quiet
Gia Moron (GVM Communications) Retaining clients in a challenging atmosphere
Lewis Goldberg (KCSA) The state of public relations among cannabis companies

“Events were the main source of exposure for cannabis brands as advertising remains largely off-limits to our industry,” explained AxisWire & Green Market Report co-founder Cynthia Salarizadeh. “When this pandemic took over, it left our industry and most cannabis brands who do not have the support of a public relations firm without many options. We felt the best way for us to provide some guidance was to create a free virtual event where brands can hear directly from journalists and PR professionals about how to navigate during these times.”

“Online screen time has increased as many of us are in various states of lockdown, which has increased the demand for content. Unfortunately, media companies have been forced to scale back as a result of the pandemic creating huge disruption in the supply and demand for news,” said Green Market Report CEO and Co-founder Debra Borchardt. “We believed that an event like this was needed as we all pivot and adapt to a new normal in the cannabis industry. We are stronger together.”


Kyra ReedKyra ReedMay 14, 2020
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12min8740

Welcome to the New Video Age

In early-March Google and Apple issued some of the first work from home orders in corporate America. This was soon followed by announcements that the biggest conferences and festivals of the year, SXSW, Coachella, E3, were canceling or indefinitely postponing dates. The business world found itself, suddenly and unexpectedly, faced with figuring out two major issues: how to keep employees motivated and focused from home and how to reach consumers, vendors and other essential relationships necessary to survive. 

For marketers, it signaled a dynamic shift into a space they’ve been advocating for years – Video. Video conferencing, live streaming, and on demand are powerful tools to reach an endless audience, around the world, 24/7.  Marketing professionals have been preparing for this explosion of use for years. 

Video platforms like Zoom and Skype have been tools for marketers for nearly a decade but failed to replace the in person experiences for most companies. From in house meetings to conferences and networking events, companies have relied heavily on these interactions to conduct their business. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic they’re now forced to pivot and find ways to integrate video into all human contact required touchpoints of the business. 

How The Cannabis Industry is Using Video 

The plant-touching part of the cannabis industry requires 100% person to person contact to survive. The products cannot be digitized. Fortunately it has been determined to be an essential business for most legal states enabling farmers, manufacturers, testing and retailers to continue conducting business. 

However, precautionary measures will need to be taken for an indefinite period of time in all aspects of the business. Cannabis will need to pivot to using video tools and platforms for training staff, connecting with suppliers, networking and consumer education. For an industry reluctant to invest too heavily in technology or reaching an audience that extends beyond city or state lines, the transition to video will be a challenge to execute but promises, for those who do it right, to catapult their brand recognition and reach.

Times of great change require nimble and creative thinking and the cannabis industry is proving to be innovators in the multiple ways to employ video to stay connected and solve new business problems that are arising with social distancing and limits on gathering size. 

California Central Valley Cannabis sales rep Amanda Soens realized she needed to find a way to stay in front of customers to keep her brands top of mind so she conceived the idea of  a “Virtual Demo.” A laptop sits on the demo table streaming Amanda from her living room. Products are laid out near the computer for customers to examine and discuss with her, on the spot. She can answer technical questions, educate on the benefits of the products and hold the customers hand through the selection process. The customers have found it to be a fun way to engage and the dispensaries willing to give it a try are thrilled with the results so far.

Hemp seed company Kayagene found themselves at a critical point when the COVID shutdown happened. It was time to put seed in the ground and potential customers weren’t returning calls. The Head of Product Portfolio, George Workman, took everything the company learned in the field last year and turned it into webinars to educate farmers interested in growing hemp. He was blown away by the number of attendees, their questions and their interest in learning more about how to grow a high yield hemp crop.

The State of Cannabis Conference, a mainstay California conference for policy updates, idea exchange and networking, has created two virtual experiences to keep their audience engaged. Susan Sores, CEO and Founder of The State of Cannabis describes the  event as a Full Spectrum Conference Experience. She was quick to transition not only the conference online, which had over 700 attendees, but she’s also launched a weekly  happy hour/sesh  via Zoom. Susan believes online experiences will ultimately provide better ROI for sponsors and content for attendees. 

A popular networking event for women, Haus of Jane, had several parties planned at conferences around the country. When it was clear the events would be canceled they had to rethink their entire strategy. Co Founder Samantha Montanaro discovered that there was a real need for women to connect with one another and keep the business contacts flowing. They found a technology that allows them to host a range of dynamic events and have been able to  expand their reach around the world. Haus of Jane has built a series of speed networking events for women and is planning an International Women’s summit for July of 2020. Their first two events brought over 250 women and they have expect to double that with their next event. 

How to Produce a Successful Cannabis Virtual Event

Video has the potential to revolutionize the way we do business but it must be executed on the appropriate platform (venue) with a professional approach. Lisa Caperello-Snyder, a digital event producer and Co Founder of Tokeativity,  provided insight on how to choose where to host an online event. “Finding the right digital venue is as important online as it is in the real world. It’s ridiculous to host a fancy 200 person wedding in a dive bar. The same is true when it comes to choosing a platform for your virtual experience.” She provided this list to keep at hand to help sort through all the options:

  • Is the event Free or Paid?
  • Is it for the public or invite only?
  • How many tickets/attendees?
  • Will guests be on screen, if so how many?
  • Is group interaction part of the event? (Will people talk one on one or many listening to one or more?)
  • Is a chat function for questions required?
  • Will there be VIPs?

[Curious what event tool might work best for you? Take the quiz at howtohostavirtualevent.com]

The rules of professional engagement are different with video and require more attention to detail than an in person exchange. Kendra Losee, CEO of Mota Marketing,  recommends being very strategic in how you approach video. “The content needs to be well thought out with a clear message and outcome for the audience. It’s easy for a video conference to turn into a free for all without the proper guidelines. Once the content is nailed down the next thing necessary for a really smooth experience is the environment where you are broadcasting. Good lighting, sound and background are all critical for your viewers to see and hear you and not get distracted by lighting or sound issues.”

Video will never replace human interaction but it provides the cannabis industry an invaluable tool to continue business as usual in highly unusual circumstances. Brands that are nervous about jumping in can start small with inter office meetings via Zoom or Skype. Get comfortable in the environment and hire a professional who can help with a plan and make sure that simple missteps that can lead to disaster – can be averted. 

This is just the beginning of the video age and the innovative cannabis businesses who are willing to experiment with the technology will be better equipped to deal with the times ahead. 

 


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtMay 4, 2020
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18min7180

HAVE A GOOD TRIP: ADVENTURES IN PSYCHEDELICS is a documentary featuring comedic tripping stories from A-list actors, comedians, and musicians. Star-studded reenactments and trippy animations bring their surreal hallucinations to life. Mixing comedy with a thorough investigation of psychedelics. HAVE A GOOD TRIP explores the pros, cons, science, history, future, pop cultural impact, and cosmic possibilities of hallucinogens.

The film tackles the big questions: Can psychedelics have a powerful role in treating depression, addiction, and helping us confront our own mortality? Are we all made of the same stuff? Is love really all we need? Can trees talk? Cast members include Adam Scott, Nick Offerman, Sarah Silverman, Ad-Rock, Rosie Perez, A$AP Rocky, Paul Scheer, Nick Kroll, and Rob Corddry to name a few. Written and directed by Donick Cary. Produced by Mike Rosenstein, Sunset Rose Pictures, and Sugarshack 2000.

The film was originally planned for a premiere at the SXSW film festival, but unfortunately when the event was canceled so was the big premiere launch. The documentary will be available on Netflix.

Green Market Report was able to speak with director Donick Cary about the movie recently and this is that interview:

Green Market Report Editor Debra Borchardt:

What prompted you to have the idea to do this movie?

Donick Cary:

It’s really interesting, or at least it’s really interesting for me, obviously, I started this 11 years ago out of sort of this idea that big celebrities sharing what at the time was a really taboo subject, that you’d only have at lunch or something. I was with Ben Stiller and Fisher Stevens and people were sharing psychedelic stories and I was like, “Oh, what a cool thing. Maybe there’s a version of that movie The Aristocrats, where we just get a whole bunch of people to share stories. And for the viewer that would be like having this extended lunch where you just go around the table and let a hundred people tell us what they learned.” You know I come from a comedy producing and writing background and in general, those stories have some funny elements and I thought like, “oh what a funny taboo place for us to get the stories and then I could animate them or do reenactments and that would be a great thing.”

Now what happened was over those 11 years it took to make this thing and pull out those stories, two things happened. One, the conversation in the world changed, things like Michael Pollan’s book, testing and different reports coming out and more conferences and groups starting up to talk about real, actual beneficial benefits and science that was going on in this day. But also the stories as I was putting them together started to tell a different story than just these are all funny. I started to have a huge variety of experiences. Some of the people were saying like, “this is not good for my brain. I’ll never do it again.” And some of them saying, “Psychedelics helped me organize everything in my life. Keep my ego in check. Be a better human. Be in touch with a spiritual side I didn’t know I had. Not be afraid of death.”

These were sort of like anecdotal things that were just coming out from a very interesting variety of people. And often the most unexpected person would say the thing that you’re like, “oh wow, that changed your trajectory in life” or whatever. But those things sort of came to a head as we were in the edit room is the conversation changed in the world and we realized we actually have this bigger story to tell from real people and real stories.

GMR:

I could tell there was, I guess, some kind of time warp on there because when I saw Carrie Fisher. Which kind of made it really special to see her sitting there and of course she’s so honest and generous with what she’s sharing and so self-effacing. It was just lovely to see her as a part of that.

Donick Cary:

Yeah, both she and Anthony Bourdain have passed. But we also interviewed Tommy Ramone before he passed away and it was like this other very sweet story about 1970s punk rock New York and these punkers at CBGBs but also LSD and like how it was in all these different communities was such an interesting thing.

I would say about Carrie, and Anthony too to some extent, but all the interviews are the people who agreed to be in this were really like, whether they knew it or not, we’re kind of opening their brains for an interview. And these interviews are so intimate that way. And then you have another level of Carrie brought us into her home and was like, “Look, I’m an open book. Just look around. This is how I see the world. And psychedelics were a big part of that.” It was very intimate, close setting wise but also just from their heart and from their brain. And that Carrie interview was a really big version of that, an example of that.

GMR:
And was it difficult to convince people? I mean, as you said, the narrative around psychedelics has changed so much with decriminalization and such, but I’m sure going back a couple of years or so, was it difficult to get people to agree to this because there is still some stigma there?

Donick Cary:              

Yeah. In general, people who have an overall deal at Disney or whatever were like, “Nope, can’t. Nope. Not going to give a story.” But there are a lot of people too who are like raising kids and just don’t want to talk about drugs or maybe got addicted to some other drug and were like, “I just don’t want to talk about drugs at all. Just because it’s not my thing. I don’t want to be the face of anything.”

So it was a little bit of like, I would say, we asked everybody we could get close to, and I have very funny and famous people who I know have great stories but we’re like, “Nah. Nah, I can’t do that.” So we just put the word out. This was meant to be fun and interesting and come from a place of not a document interview at all.

GMR:             Non-judgemental.

Donick Cary:

Yeah, non-judgemental. It was whoever said yes, I was like, “great, let’s talk and see where it leads.” Even Susan Sarandon was really interested in doing this and I got on the phone with her two or three times, talked through her story. She knew Timothy Leary. She had really interesting things, but she just wasn’t sure they were good for a movie. We tried and tried and it just didn’t quite happen.

I felt like there is an important distinction to make with these drugs. They’re there in general, science has shown us they’re not addictive, that alcohol causes way more death and destruction than psychedelics. And it’s part of this thing that I’ve been saying like I’m not an advocate that everyone should do these drugs or that they should be out everywhere and just legalize, I hate the word willy-nilly, but willy-nilly. But that I’m an advocate for a rational conversation about these. That there’s a powerful tool there that we have, in a time where humanity is looking for fixes for mental health and connection to each other and the planet, that these might provide some help in those areas that we’re really lacking in. And we should have a rational conversation about that.

GMR:

Who do you see as your audience for this movie?

Donick Cary:

I always felt like the low hanging fruit was first the stoner community. We were like, “let’s just get stoner comedy. That’s great. That’s no problem.” You know people who go to Burning Man and an Electric Daisy Carnival should love this.

But I think there’s a bigger conversation here where there’s a little bit of the New Yorker community that loved Michael Pollan’s book should also find an in here and enjoy it because it brings up some big ideas. But also, like I always think of my father-in-law, who lives in the Atlanta suburbs and stuff, and he’s going to love this. There are people in that he loves, like Sting, who he’s going to go like, “whoa, Sting.” And he’ll be skeptical about a lot of it, but I think he’ll enjoy the ride and it’ll bring up some topics that are worth talking about for him or thinking about with him.

GMR:

I thought what was interesting about the movie was seeing, like you said, that you had different viewpoints because you had like a Ben Stiller saying, “I was one and done. Like this is not meant for me.” And A$AP Rocky was also very like, “I do not think this is for everyone.” And so you definitely have a little bit of everything. And to the people that were very intimate like, “this really changed my life and this really made a difference.” And then you had the other people that were just kind of like, “yeah, this was a good party.”

Donick Cary:  

Right. Right. And I think we tried to put in all viewpoints and just make sure, too, these are the interviewee’s opinion and try to give people… This is almost like a guide book. Read it, do what you need to do with it. Take the information you need from it. If you’re more of Sting kind of person, maybe some of his stuff makes more sense to you. If you’re more of a Ben Stiller kind of person… These are tolerable drugs that can be dangerous when used in the wrong setting and situation. So like Carrie Fisher said, “they’re not to be used cavalierly. They might not be for you. You have to know yourself.”

Two things that tied it for me was like, I’m not a religious person, but I feel like religion is a powerful drug. You should understand it and then figure out if it’s something you need. That the personal choice. This is very similar to these, but they’re not for everybody. And the other thing that really guided me was my kids are both in the movie because they were around while we were shooting it. And I was like, “Otis, will you put on a white top hat and do this?”

GMR:

That was a funny thing. This little kid in the white suit.” And then it kind of, as the movie goes along, it’s like, “oh yeah, now that works.”

Donick Cary:

Right. I do think that there are little nods like that come from the psychedelic or cosmic thinking, which is this thing of like, “yeah, you have little guys that pop up in different places that you weren’t expecting.” So that was kind of the goal there, was let’s have sort of a little somebody who’s got some extra advice and is like almost sitting on your shoulder and reminding you this or that. But it could be a little bit of a prankster, who knows?

But that was the other thing, it’s like, well my kids are in it. I love. Like we were doing this in a fun way and wanted to involve them because they were having fun and a part of it. But also they were growing up as I was editing and making this and I really want them to have tools to make informed decisions. Like I would not tell you that then they should be doing psychedelics, obviously. And I think all of that information is in this movie, it is like people are saying like, “wait, know yourself, it’s not for kids. There’s so much to do before you just ingest stuff.”

GMR:  

It looked like you were planning on premiering this at South by Southwest?

Donick Cary:

I go to the Nantucket Film Festival every year and Janet Pearson who did a lot of the booking for South by, comes there two or three years ago, I met her on Nantucket and was telling her about this and she was like, “oh my God, like can we get it at South by? It would be so fun to bring it there.” I was like, “oh my God, yes. Please.” And that was sort of like this three year plan that was finally coming into the place and we have so much talent in the movie, including the rock band, Yo La Tengo did the soundtrack for it and they were going to come to South by and do a show for us. Comedians like Reggie Watts were up for intro-ing it, doing comedy, and we were like we were finally going to be the big be in party tent experience that we’ve always dreamed of, alas-

Donick Cary:

Yeah, so we’re on Netflix, it’ll debut May 11th, coming up in a little while. I think May 1st we’re going to release some assets. I’m getting way too technical, but like a trailer and some bits from the film, so can start to get a sense. And then May 11th, it will be on Netflix and hopefully, as we come out of lockdown, at some point we can maybe travel with a little bit and put together some comedians and music and even some of our scientists and stuff and go out and talk about… Keep the conversation going.

 


StaffStaffApril 29, 2020
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4min7040

FlowerHire, a leading Staffing and Talent Strategy firm serving the regulated cannabis industry has signed an exclusive Partnership with Leafwire, “The LinkedIn of Cannabis,” which connects over 30,000 professionals across all cannabis verticals – including VCs, investment holding firms, supply chain operators, distributors, manufacturers, extractors, and retailers.

To help the industry and those companies still looking to hire and grow, Leafwire and FlowerHire are also offering 30% off normal placement fees for the rest of Q2. You can contact FlowerHire for more info on the discounted ‘pandemic rates’ at leafwire@flowerhire.com.

According to Leafwire CEO, “We want to do what we can to help more it more affordable for those innovative companies, who continue to move forward and thrive, even in these difficult times. We think it’s a huge opportunity for companies to secure some very talented team members, right now, as there are people currently looking for work, who are otherwise almost always employed. It’s a prime time to be hiring.”

“By joining forces with Leafwire, we have not only broadened our ability to deliver best-in-class executive recruitment and talent services to their passionate user base, but we will also be able to help facilitate meaningful networking and innovative partnership opportunities that will undoubtedly advance the industry,”  says David Belsky, CEO of FlowerHire. 

Since its inception in 2017, FlowerHire has played a critical role in building, scaling, and retaining world class teams for the North American cannabis industry.  Clients include many of the “rising stars” of cannabis, such as DNA Genetics, Papa & Barkley, Kiva, Ascend Wellness, Pleasantrees, and Glass House Group, FlowerHire has placed more than 300 professionals across ten states to date.

“Our mission has always been to build a conscious cannabis infrastructure and community, one hire at a time,” Belsky says. “Through strategically aligning with Leafwire — which represents some 13,000 companies worldwide with members hailing from areas as diverse as Australia, India, Germany, and Colombia, among others — we will be taking our mission to amazing new heights.” 

“Discussions about job growth in the U.S. tend to focus on industries such as technology and health care, but the biggest boom over the past couple of years has been taking place in cannabis. Now, more than ever, with cannabis retailers having been deemed ‘essential’ during this coronavirus pandemic, we will start seeing our burgeoning industry among the fastest-growing job markets in America. Leafwire’s partnership with FlowerHire will help exponentially accelerate this growth. We’re truly excited to bring FlowerHire’s expertise onto the Leafwire ecosystem,” says, Leafwire CEO Peter Vogel.

 


StaffStaffMarch 2, 2020
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Cannabis and CBD advertisers have historically had a hard time finding the right customers. But doing so just got easier, thanks to a partnership between CannaVu and Tamoco. Cannavu is a curated collection of compliant advertising for Canna-/CBD marketers. Tamoco is a sensor-driven location data network. Together, they’ll provide insights into more than 5,000 medical and recreational dispensaries in the United States, enabling marketers to determine which devices have visited them, how frequently they’ve visited, and how recently.  High-speed processing of precise data sets will enable clients to unlock business intelligence in real-time.

“Combining precise POI (points of interest) measurement with CannaVu’s powerful ad stack gives Canna-/CBD marketers an effective way of reaching the right audiences and segments,” said Daniel Angel, CEO of Tamoco. “We’re excited to see how this partnership can grow as brands can see the value of precise targeting and a better understanding of visits to Canna-POIs.”
CannaVu overcomes the industry’s marketing limitations by accessing ad impressions on Canna-Compliant mainstream and endemic publishers and vendors. Publisher partners set standards on types of advertisers, campaigns, creatives, geographies, and device types. The Tamoco Visits product analyzes large amounts of first-party location data to understand a visit to a point of interest (POI). The visits product goes beyond location and uses fields such as altitude, motion, and dwell time to more accurately understand the number of visits to a POI.


Privacy is of great significance to both companies: CannaVu follows state, federal, and FDA requirements on where companies can advertise and what types of creative can be used. It enforces an advertiser “Code of Conduct” more stringent than typical state and local requirements. Likewise, Tamoco’s Consent Management Platform (CMP) and Privacy SDK allow consumers to opt in at the point of data collection. This provides a shared and local record of consent which can be revoked by the user at any time. These preferences are stored and communicated with vendors in real time.  Benefits of the partnership include:

  • First-party data and robust visits methodology – knowing when someone actually visits a dispensary (rather than any ping inside a geofence around a POI).
  • Frequency and other metadata – knowing how recent visits were, which type of dispensary, and so on. This facilitates simple yet powerful segmentation for advertisers.
  • Ability to protect consumer privacy, especially with regards to the CCPA – Tamoco has built a CMP that integrates with a publisher’s app. When a device is recognized as being in California, Tamoco enables publishers to deliver a custom dialogue to ask for consent. Users have the ability to opt-out, hit “do not sell” or request to see any data Tamoco has related to their devices.

“Our field is highly competitive and regulations vary state by state. Advertisers in the cannabis and CBD categories working with us will be working with the most privacy-focused company in the business,” said Miles Dennison, CEO of CannaVu. “Our customers will know they are reaching cannabis intenders in a compliant manner and getting results.  We are closing the loop on digital to store to sale.”


Video StaffVideo StaffFebruary 27, 2020

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Social Club TV is a collaboration between RONIN Content Services CEO Josh Otten and Cookies CEO Berner Milan Jr. Green Market Report was able to talk with Otten about the new venture which features over 17 series and 300 episodes. SCTV can be found on Apple TV, Roku and Pluto. The channel will be hitting Amazon Prime in the second quarter.  Thank you for watching the Green Market Report! Be sure to subscribe to stay up to date on all our videos. The Green Market Report focuses on the financial news of the rapidly growing cannabis industry.


StaffStaffFebruary 18, 2020
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The cannabis industry is one of the most unique and restricted industries in general, but when it comes to advertising, marketing and public relations, it stands alone in its capabilities and the landscape in which to operate. 

The keys to any good marketing or PR campaign in cannabis, since advertising is still almost completely illegal to even engage, are creativity, understanding the laws, and relationships. If you have never worked in PR for the cannabis industry, and made the transition into it, you would know there is a learning curve that requires time. No matter how big, long standing or respected a firm may be, it will take 6-12 months to figure out how to navigate the cannabis terrain. 

Unfortunately, many brands and companies will go and hire the most expensive PR firm in the world, only to find out 3-6 months in, that they would have received 20 times more coverage if they would have gone with a firm that has a sole, or major, focus on cannabis for no less than a year. Making the mistake leads to a lot of wasted time and money, which in the cannabis industry as well as any other, are too valuable and can be avoided. 

For the second year in row, the team at the Green Market Report has evaluated the most effective public relations firms available to the industry that embody the experience, relationships and compliance know-how to garner your company’s desired press coverage and message management better than anyone else. 

Each one of these firms have been vetted and yield proven results for their clients. We have carefully selected the teams that we would recommend to any cannabis brand, personality or public company. Some of the firms have specialties with brands, whether it be sustainable farming or extraction, or specifically with luxury positioning, and some specifically specialize in financial markets.

Before selecting any PR firm in any situation, you should always review and interview no less than 3 to 5 thoroughly. Chemistry between your team and theirs is incredibly important. So, take your time and find the right fit. 

We hope that this list can help you and your team find the best cannabis focused PR firm that can achieve your goals most effectively. 

Here is the 2020 Green Market Report list of the Top 12 Most Effective Cannabis PR Firms:

 

1.) ICR Strategic Communications & Advisory:

Mission Statement: Provide strategic communications for business leaders to achieve business goals, build awareness and credibility, and enhance long-term enterprise value.

About ICR Strategic Communications & Advisory: Established in 1998, ICR partners with companies to execute strategic communications and advisory programs that achieve business goals, build awareness and credibility, and enhance long-term enterprise value. ICR’s cannabis practice leverages the firm’s highly-differentiated service model, which pairs capital markets veterans with senior communications professionals, bringing deep sector knowledge and relationships to its clients.  ICR’s roster of cannabis clients include, Tilray, Aphria, Aurora, Hexo, Hydrofarm, Neptune Wellness Solutions, CV Sciences, Weedmaps, Medicine Man Technologies and Bespoke Capital Acquisition Corp.  During the past two years, ICR’s cannabis team has helped its clients navigate several go-public transactions, M&A, capital raises and special situations, while also providing ongoing, integrated investor relations and public relations services to raise awareness, visibility and understanding of their long-term growth strategy.

2.) MATTIO Communications:

Mission Statement: MATTIO creates brand leaders by using our well-honed communication skills, industry knowledge and creative muscle to drive conversations, shape perceptions and help our clients achieve ambitious business goals.

About MATTIO CommunicationsMATTIO Communications was founded by Rosie Mattio in 2005 and is one of the longest running and largest marketing firms in the cannabis space. The company has supported the industry and grown up alongside it, working to normalize perceptions and remove the stigma surrounding cannabis. In fact, the firm placed the first cannabis article ever to appear in both Vogue and Oprah Magazine! At the core of MATTIO’s success is a simple principle: Rosie and her team prioritize delivering substantial, meaningful results. In 2019 alone, MATTIO secured over 3,000 placements for its clients, translating into over 100 billion UVMs.

MATTIO represents some of the best known brands in every sector of the cannabis industry, including Canndescent, Harborside, Papa & Barkley, Headset, LeafLink, PathogenDx and CannaSafe. Despite doubling its client roster over the past year, MATTIO prides itself on maintaining a close working relationship with clients, modeling itself as an extension of their internal marketing and strategy teams. Over the past year, the company has expanded its capabilities, adding investor relations, SEO, programmatic, social media and influencer marketing to better serve and represent clients.

In 2019, the company was ranked on Green Entrepreneur’s Top 100 Cannabis Companies and awarded MG Magazine’s Best Workplaces. Rosie Mattio was also named one of Forbes Fifteen Powerful And Innovative Women In Cannabis and received a High Times Female 50 award.

3.) CMW Media:

Mission Statement: CMW Media’s mission is to help share meaningful messages worldwide. We aim to catapult industry innovators to become household names and implement innovative public relations campaigns that lead to positive legislative and systematic changes. In addition to servicing our clients to the highest standard and becoming an extension of their marketing teams, we aim to be a leading media resource of cannabis, technology and healthcare information for print, broadcast and online journalists.

About CMW MediaEstablished in 2014, CMW Media is a full-service public relations and marketing agency for emerging markets industries including cannabis, sustainable energy, technology, pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and psychedelics. The company’s management team has more than 50 years of combined experience and brings a unique blend of knowledge from a variety of backgrounds including journalism, internal communications, agency, and in-house.
CMW Media Founder and CEO Andrew Hard is a Fox News veteran and two-time Neal Award-Winning journalist who started the agency to help share powerful messages about how cannabis was positively changing lives across the globe. Many of CMW Media’s founding campaigns were based upon a series of strategic non-profit efforts, telling the stories of children who were suffering from a number of debilitating diseases and disorders who got a second chance at life because of cannabidiol (CBD). Traveling the globe to meet with these families and film their stories was CMW Media’s Creative Director Jordan Guzzardo, a two-time Emmy Award-Winning videographer. These stories helped, and continue to help, those who are brainwashed by the War on Drugs understand CBD’s many wellness benefits. In addition, Andrew Hard spearheaded media relations efforts that led to the legalization of CBD product imports in Mexico, as well as the legalization and government subsidization of CBD products in Brazil.

Since its inception, CMW Media has expanded its services beyond public and media relations to include digital and email marketing, social media, video production, brand development, web design, PPC campaigns and e-commerce management. Specializing in publicly-traded companies, CMW Media helps companies convey their value to shareholders and investors alike by promoting financial reports, drafting shareholder letters and call scripts, aligning investor relations strategy with media outreach and creating attractive, easy-to-navigate pitch decks. The agency also boasts impressive creative offerings and its own professional photography studio in its downtown San Diego office where expert media training, headshots, promotional video and product photography can all be handled in-house.

From seed to sale, CMW Media represents both ancillary and plant-touching businesses in the cannabis industry in more than 20 countries. The agency’s current cannabis clients include Medical Marijuana, Inc., Tilt Holdings, Bhang, Inc., Sparx Cannabis, Hemp, Inc., Axim Biotechnologies, Kannalife, Inc., Ecogen Laboratories, and Emerald Scientific, among others. In 2020, CMW Media was listed among the top 10 PR agencies in San Diego by the San Diego Business Journal.

4.) KCSA Strategic Communications:

KCSA Mission Statement: We Inform, Influence and Inspire.

At KCSA Strategic Communications, we deliver high-impact corporate visibility that supports sales, attracts capital, builds shareholder value and communicates to current and potential employees.

About KCSA Strategic CommunicationsKCSA Strategic Communications, an integrated strategic communications firm specializing in public relations, investor relations and social media, celebrated its 50th Anniversary in September of 2019. Along with the anniversary celebrations came a “KCSA brand” refresh, updating its acronym to “Knowledge. Creativity. Strategy. Advocacy.” KCSA also experienced exceptional growth with an increase in revenue of 35 percent and more than 25 new executive hires in 2019.

KCSA is one of the only independently-owned communications consultancies and brings these offerings to bear through integrated, business-to-business campaigns. With vertical expertise in financial services, healthcare, tech, and for the last six-plus years, KCSA has become the most well-known integrated corporate cannabis communications firms. KCSA works with its clients – which range from high-growth startups to mid-cap publicly traded companies – to communicate to their most important stakeholders, build their brands and support their sales efforts.

KCSA’s cannabis practice has been representing companies in the cannabis industry for more than five years. Clients span the entire supply chain from companies that grow the plant, process it and dispense it, to companies that provide consulting services, financial services and even ancillary products such as lighting, nutrients and packaging

In 2017, KCSA launched The Green Rush, a podcast about cannabis, the capital markets and culture. On a weekly basis hosts Lewis Goldberg and Anne Donohoe from KCSA Strategic Communications, speak with the CEOs, Regulators, Legislators and Cultural Icons pushing the cannabis industry forward.

In 2018 KCSA acquired leading cannabis and hemp PR firm Salar Media Group. Some of their current and past cannabis clients include public companies such as Acreage Holdings, KushCo Holdings, Terra Tech, iAnthus, Curaleaf, Aurora Cannabis and Akerna as well as industry leaders such as The Emerald Cup, Vangst, and High Times Holdings.

KCSA’s cannabis highlights include:

  • KCSA Cannabis Investor Survey – KCSA released two investor surveys in 2019 resulting in coverage in Investor’s Business Daily, Bloomberg, Benzinga, Marijuana Today, Green Market Report, MG and IR Magazine. This survey puts KCSA front and center in providing key, branded market intelligence in order to better understand the cannabis investor.
  • KCSA was named to mg Magazine’s 2019 list of Top 50 Cannabis Employers
  • KCSA was ranked as a top M&A PR Advisory Firm by The Deal

  • KCSA was named one of the most Powerful PR Firms of 2019 by the Observer

  • KCSA’s management team was featured on a number of panels and keynotes including: Benzinga’s Cannabis Capital Conference, The Green Market Summit, Cannabis World Congress, NCIA Seed-to-Sale, NCIA Northeast Cannabis Business Conference and OTC Cannabis Day. 
  • Through its partnership with the OTCMarkets, KCSA hosts the Virtual Investor Conferences, the industry’s foremost online investor conference series that provides a unique, interactive forum for publicly-traded cannabis companies to meet and present directly with investors.
  • To date, KCSA has hosted seven conferences, with more than 35,000 attendees. KCSA hosted the inaugural Congressional Cannabis Day Forum in coordination with The Cannabis Caucus at the United States Capitol building in Washington, DC on May 21, 2019. 
  • KCSA’s flagship podcast, The Green Rush, hit 100,000 downloads in February 2020!

5.) Rosen Group:

Mission Statement: Rosen Group is committed to providing high-quality, strategic public relations services by integrating innovative approaches with tried-and-true methods that translate directly to clients’ objectives for their bottom lines. We understand that the best relationships are seamless. Rosen Group integrates itself as its clients’ full-fledged partner, communicating closely with their internal teams to customize PR programs and to maximize efficiency. Our goal is to achieve results that exceed clients’ expectations. Moving beyond the traditional media relations role, Rosen Group is a consultant and sounding board for its partners, executing insightful and detail-oriented client campaigns.

About Rosen Group: What do you get when you combine old school values, contemporary thinking, New York moxie, deep-rooted cannabis experience and a best-in-class professional team? Meet Rosen Group, a 360-degree public relations agency headquartered in Manhattan, with more than three decades of experience cultivating regional and national awareness for clients through targeted media outreach, innovative programs and a nimbleness to move with the rapidly evolving media landscape. Our focus may be on the green market, but our savvy team is far from green when it comes to our breadth of knowledge and capabilities.  

Rosen Group has strong roots in business, advertising, legal, media and entrepreneurial sectors, while our cannabis experience is unparalleled. The firm has worked since the inception of adult-use in Colorado to bring cannabis messaging to the national stage.

The agency has worked with vertically integrated companies, products, consultants and others to expand into emerging markets while educating target audiences and conveying critical narratives. Past and current cannabis clients include NUG, Vertosa, Azuca, Keef Brands, Wana Brands, Nanosphere, Cannabis Business Alliance, TheWeedTube and MMJ Business Academy, among others. In the ever-transforming cannabis market, we foster creativity, innovation and growth to both client and media relations.

Rosen Group clients receive customized, personal service and strategic initiatives specific to their objectives that are executed through broad-spectrum public relations campaigns to maximize coverage. Press placements span print, digital and broadcast, from leading cannabis trades such as Green Entrepreneur and Marijuana Business Magazine, to mainstream general interest, news and business outlets such as Wall Street Journal, Yahoo! Finance, Rolling Stone and Forbes. The firm also highlights each of our clients’ presence and establishes thought-leadership opportunities by “newsjacking” on industry trends, drafting and securing placements for bylined articles, as well as generating speaking opportunities at prominent industry conferences, including NCIA, Engage for Good 2020, Bev Net Events Cannabis Forum, and MJ Biz Con International.

How does Rosen Group move the needle forward in the ever-transformative canna-communications industry? With key accomplishments such as:

  • Brand equity for social equity – Spearheading brand awareness for NUG’s significant role in the Oakland, California, social equity program, including engaging with city officials and generating earned media placements in noteworthy regional and national outlets, including the San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury News, Cannabis Now Magazine and Comedy Central’s “Klepper” show.
  • From 0 to 360 – Blooming from an idea for a water-friendly cannabinoid infusion process, Rosen Group played an integral part in the successful launch and growth of culinary-driven edibles brand Azuca. From establishing the company’s now industry-known name to supporting its product partnerships and expansion initiatives in both the consumer and B2B markets, Rosen Group continues to be an intrinsic collaborator in each part of the process to align Azuca with the top media movers and shakers in the industry.

6.) GVM Communications:

Mission Statement: Great Visions and Minds Communicating

About GVM CommunicationsGia is the Founder and CEO of GVM Communications, Inc. a public relations, brand & business development consulting firm which launched in 2012. GVM Communications Inc. has a core team that consists of Tracey Henry the Lead Public Relations Strategist (aka “Media Pitch Master”), Alicia A. Brown the Director of Client Relations (aka “The Client Whisper”) and N’Dia Dugue the Social Media Maven (aka The Millennial Connect), GVM also engages a team of consultants & freelancers demonstrating talents and skills in an array of industries: Arts, Education, Financial Services, Diversity & Inclusion, Publishing, Sports & Entertainment, Technology, and Wellness. In 2015, the firm expanded its services into the cannabis industry. GVM Communication, Inc. is currently regarded as one of the top 10 firms in the country specializing in cannabis & hemp. 

Although, increasingly renowned, within the cannabis & hemp space. GVM Communication, Inc. remains equally vested in diverse markets of business ranging from: (Non-Profits, privately owned to Publicly traded Fortune 500 companies. The firm has a client base ranges from small to mid-sized businesses, non-profit organizations, entrepreneurs, authors and celebrity clients). 

The GVM team has cumulatively with over 60+ years of experience. Gia is also the President of Women Grow and come with extensive experience from Goldman Sachs Group Inc as Media Relations Officer and the Fremantle Corporation as Director of Promotions & Publicity, while her team Tracey Henry is a cannabis media expert CEO of THC Tracey Henry Consulting & Type A Media and has extensive experience in politics, hospitality, health & wellness; Alicia Brown is a master of the 4’P’s (People, Product, Processes & Partners) and has leveraged her superpowers on behalf companies like; General Motors & W. W. Grainger and has an extensive background in Marketing & Business Development in (publishing, entertainment, and food & beverage); N’Dia Dugue  has worked with the One/35 Agency which specializes in targeting multicultural consumers and business professionals with clients such as Google, Oprah Winfrey Network, Fox Broadcasting Co. and A’24’s moonlight. 

Gia is a board member of the following organization’s Minorities for Medical Marijuana (M4MM, Advisory Board member of Cannabis World Congress Business Expo, Coalition Member of Start-SMART New York and founder of the New York Cannabis & Hemp Trade Association. Equally compelling, Gia mentors enterprising young women entrepreneurs across the country and intercontinental in countries like South Africa. Gia currently resides in her hometown of Brooklyn, NY.

7.) 5W Public Relations:

Mission Statement: Resourceful, innovative, and nimble, 5W works hard, thinks big, and delivers successful results.

About 5W Public RelationsFounded by Ronn Torossian in 2003 in one-room, with one intern, and three clients, 5W Public Relations today employs 175 professionals, taking up two entire floors in the iconic Helmsley Building. In 2019, 5W grew 3.1% and reported record-breaking revenue of $36.4M. The Beauty and Health practices exploded, boasting 19.5% and 28.4% increases in revenue YoY, respectively and the Cannabis division skyrocketed from zero to revenue of $1.7M in just one year onboarding nearly 20 clients in the space.

5W has an expert ability to narrate the stories of emerging brands and launch them into mainstream fame. 5W equips clients with the necessary knowledge, innovation and creativity to achieve top-tier engagement and drive growth-oriented results in an ever-changing world. The firm and its employees understand this is a “defining moment” for cannabis and has maximized its presence while the industry is hot; and for this reason, the Firm’s speed in capitalizing on this moment is coupled by real time analysis of every possible scenario prior to taking action.

5W is dedicated to cannabis, because the Firm believes in the future of the industry and understands that the health and wellness benefits of cannabis have the potential to not only change a life, but the course of history. The passion and focus the Firm has on the industry means that it is up to date with all relevant legislation, trends and new players on the scene.5W drives this awareness and perception by breaking down barriers and ideating impactful stories to an unmatched network of outlets.

5W now services roughly 260 clients at any given time including world-class brands like SAP, L’Oreal, Topps, Sparkling Ice, Santa Margherita, Careerbuilder and SodaStream as well as numerous Fortune 500 companies, six members of the Forbes 400, hedge funds, and four technology unicorns including N26, Payoneer, AvidXchange and ironSouce. The firms notable Cannabis clients include CBDistillery, a Balanced Health Botanicals Brand and the number one online retailer of hemp-derived CBD products; Cannabiniers, leaders in smoke-free cannabis consumption brands with products such as Two Roots, Creative Waters, and Just Society; NABIS Holdings, leading investment company focused on multiple aspects of the cannabis sector; KOI CBD; Bluebird Botanicals; Ionic Brands, national cannabis holding company focused on building consumer brands; and canafarma, a hemp investment company involved in growing, processing and product development including Yooforic, hemp oil infused chewing gum.

8.) Grasslands Agency:

Mission Statement: Grasslands’ seasoned team—well-versed and legit experienced in all sides of the public relations / communications / media paradigm—employs the ethical standards we learned in Pulitzer-winning newsrooms to provide world-class content and media-savvy public relations services that helps our clients grow their businesses. We are proud to work exclusively with businesses and organizations that align with our agency values of inclusivity, compassion and dignity; engage openly with their communities and customers; practice transparency in their business relationships; and respect the important contributions of journalists and the news media. Our communications philosophy is centered on a journalism-minded, Aristotle-modeled approach to content creation, marketing, public relations, branding, social media management, events and more. That means using only vetted information, distributing professionally written copy, getting things right the first time, listening actively to our clients and media partners, and thriving on tough deadlines. At Grasslands, we put our clients’ brands, executives and messaging front and center in broadcast, online, print, podcast and social media.

About Grasslands AgencyGrasslands is a full-service boutique communications agency working with clients in highly regulated industries—including marijuana and hemp—specializing in public relations, content marketing and thought leadership work. Founder and CEO Ricardo Baca, a 25-year newspaper veteran, has built a seasoned team with more than six decades of top-level journalism experience at outlets including Men’s Health, The Denver Post, the Chicago Sun-Times, Seventeen, The Daily Beast and Wonkette—and PR experience with clients including Twitter, Victoria’s Secret, Sports Illustrated, Ulta Beauty, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Whirlpool. Grasslands has a deep bench of experience supporting clients through product launches and rebranding efforts, acquisitions and IPOs, crisis management and capital funding initiatives.

Two Accomplishments to Highlight

  • Supported client ebbu through a major pivot, and elevated the brand and its executives via a global communications strategy—leading up to the brand being acquired by Canopy Growth in fall 2018. In the year-plus leading up to the acquisition, Grasslands managed ebbu’s public relations, thought leadership program (including speaking engagements and contributed columns), weekly blog and other content marketing projects.
  • Created and produced a multi-panel event, The (Complicated) Future of Cannabis Media. Panel discussions covered the future of cannabis journalism, spanning the influential microcosm of Instagram influencers to the important role of the mainstream media. Panelists included: Katie Foody of the Associated Press’ cannabis team; Lee Ann Colacioppo, editor-in-chief of The Denver Post; Chris Walsh, president and founding editor of Marijuana Business Daily; and Jonathan Rose, associate editor of The Denver Business Journal. The panel drew more than 125 attendees and sold out the Denver Press Club, which also happens to be one of Grasslands’ pro bono clients.

Awards & Acknowledgements

  • Ricardo Baca named AdCann Marketer of the Year 2018
  • Cannabis Tech & Today named Grasslands Founder & CEO Ricardo Baca as one of the top 25 cannabis innovators of 2020
  • Ricardo Baca is a two-time veteran of the TEDx stage (TEDx Boulder in 2018; TEDx Marin in 2019)
  • Grasslands named as one of the top 10 Most Effective Cannabis PR Firms 2019 by Green Market Report

Clients to Highlight

  • Willie Nelson’s suite of cannabis brands, including Willie’s Reserve, Willie’s Remedy and Willie’s Rescue
  • City and County of Denver
  • National Cannabis Industry Association
  • Medicine Man Technologies
  • SLANG Worldwide (a.k.a. the joint venture between Canopy Growth and OrganaBrands)

Agency Milestones

  • Raised more than $5,000 for nonprofits specializing in progressive drug policy reform (Drug Policy Alliance, Students for Sensible Drug Policy, Last Prisoner Project), global human rights (Human Rights Watch), continued medical research (MAPS) and media organizations (Colorado Public Radio News, Propublica, The Marshall Project).
  • Without outside investment, scaled agency to 13 full-time colleagues and 10-plus subcontractors—and purchased a $1.2-million agency headquarters in central Denver—in first three years of operation.
  • Created, produced and launched Destigmatized, a 120-episode Instagram TV docuseries documenting America’s ever-transforming relationship with the cannabis plant.

9.) Nison Co:

Mission Statement: NisonCo is the oldest and largest cannabis, CBD, and hemp-specific PR firm and has worked with over 125 cannabis companies. Established in 2013, our mission is to build trusting relationships with members of the media in order to advance inclusive and sustainable social policies, while ethically monetizing our influence.

About Nison CoNisonCo is rated as a top cannabis PR company that can get and keep your company in the news through an unmatched network of cannabis industry leaders, reporters, product reviewers, and social media influencers. We have developed over 4,000 active relationships with reporters and reviewers who cover cannabis and related products, including CBD, from nearly every major outlet across the country. Our team of over 20 employees is made up of experts in specific niches of the industry, and are passionate about maintaining a positive image for the industry. Our hyper-attentive approach generates fast results, while our campaigns are backed by strategy and data. In addition to our ability to get you in the news, we have social media experts, bloggers, content writers, marketers, and SEO consultants in-house ready to get you and your brand maximum exposure.

Since 2013, NisonCo has worked with over 125 cannabis companies including Brightfield Group, Cannabis Voter Project, and Verano/Harvest, which helped to establish ourselves as a go-to source for reporters who cover the legal and medical cannabis industries. We use our active relationships with journalists to promote innovation, sustainability, and thought leadership for companies such as covering the front lines of the 2019 vape crisis, leading tech innovation trends and assisting new product rollouts, to normalizing the spread of CBD nationwide. For our work we’ve been recognized in articles such as The Observer’s PR Power List Cannabis Honor Roll of 2019 and Green Market Report’s Top 10 Most Effective Cannabis PR Firms 2019. In recent years we’ve continued to grow to remain the largest cannabis specific public relations firm and at the request of our clients we’ve expanded our service offerings to other things we do really well, like content marketing and SEO.

10.) Coppertop Media Relations:

Mission Statement: Coppertop Media Relations strives to work with good actors that make an impact in their local communities and the greater global cannabis industry. It prides itself on being a leading industry resource for partnering cannabis brands and professionals with opportunities, ranging from national media placements to collaborative ventures.

About Coppertop Media Relations:

Coppertop Media Relations is a full-service communications firm, established in 1995. Led by its founder, Jim Walsh, and Bruce Dunbar, an accomplished communications executive, the Firm has focused on the legal cannabis industry globally since 2016.  Coppertop works with top brands and with clients spanning every sector in cannabis: cultivation, manufacturing, technology, distribution, financial and ancillary services. Specializing in media relations, financial and crisis communications and thought leadership, Coppertop brings extensive media connections, an understanding of the brands, consumers and structure of the industry, as well as deep financial and consumer communications experience to the table.

Over the last four years, Coppertop has represented some of the most respected and established brands in the industry, including Bloom Farms, CannaCraft (Absolute Extracts, Care by Design, Satori Chocolates), Flowr,  iCan CannaTech, Project CBD, Puffco, and Scotts Miracle-Gro.

11.) Lola Red:

Mission Statement: Amplify Greatness

About Lola RedLola Red is a dynamic, integrated PR, social and digital agency located in Minneapolis and Denver. Founded by Alexis Walsko in 2002, the agency was rooted on results and service with the spirit and strategy to help clients make an impact on their business. Lola Red serves clients across multiple industries including: consumer electronics, technology, health and wellness, fashion and beauty, CPG, franchise, food and beverage, hospitality and non-profit industries. Lola Red is certified as a Women-Owned Business Enterprise by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). The Denver office opened in the Summer of 2019, marking the first expansion of the firm. Lola Red has received accolades from Ragan’s PR Daily Awards, Shorty Awards, Ad Club Co, Twin Cities Business and the PRSA organization. The agency’s sports marketing division, Lola Pro, amplifies athlete’s time in the spotlight through integrated brand partnerships, media relations, community relations and social/digital strategies. Lola Pro also works with companies and brands across various industries to help them achieve objectives utilizing professional athletes.

12.) Maverick Public Relations:

Mission Statement: Maverick Public Relations provides big agency expertise with outstanding client service by seasoned and knowledgeable communications experts.

About Maverick Public Relations: Maverick PR was established in December 2018 and quickly was recognized as one of the most effective cannabis agencies in the industry. Our cannabis and hemp experience is unparalleled, with most of us working in the sector for 5-10 years to bring cannabis messaging to the national stage and working closely with national and trade reporters as well as infiltrating specific emerging markets to educate and convey critical narratives. We are experts in cannabis, but we also have deep experience representing a multitude of sectors including health & wellness, biotech, agribusiness, sustainable technologies, renewable energy, associations, the regulated cannabis industry and media companies.

Our mission is to provide big agency expertise with outstanding client service by seasoned and knowledgeable communications experts. Maverick PR offerings include public relations, media training, investor relations, content development, thought leadership development, speaking engagements, response strategy/crisis management, event support and consulting. What sets us apart: We are hands-on, sincere, genuine and responsive. We’re ridiculously enthusiastic, hard-working and nimble. We think outside of the box, and we’re good partners to our clients. We root out good story ideas and then help our clients share their narratives.

At our core, we’re passionate about good journalism. We want to see the Fourth Estate not just survive but thrive. Each of us brings such a unique skill set and background. We come from all different ages/levels in our careers. That helps to foster a successful and supportive environment. And while more than half of our team is based in the Denver metro area, we have outposts in California, Florida and Pennsylvania, which we believe lends to a diverse perspective.

Cannabis clients, including Wana, Wana Wellness, Elixinol, Quicksilver Scientific, Mary Jane’s Medicinals, Resource Innovation Intuition, Fortis Law Partners, Capitol Wellness Solutions, L’Eagle, L’eela CBD Body Care and Cannabis Doing Good.



About Us

The Green Market Report focuses on the financial news of the rapidly growing cannabis industry. Our target approach filters out the daily noise and does a deep dive into the financial, business and economic side of the cannabis industry. Our team is cultivating the industry’s critical news into one source and providing open source insights and data analysis


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