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CBD Marketing Ideas For Hemp Oil Products

CBD digital marketing ideas for CBD hemp oil based products online

CBD Marketing Ideas for Hemp Brands and Companies

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We were tasked with brainstorming some CBD marketing ideas for a brand that sold CBD Hemp Oil products in the UK through their website and the Amazon market place. While digital marketing is much the same method across industries, the finer details are important when understanding a particular industry or audience and implementing marketing ideas that will attract them. The Hemp Bros were an emerging brand from 2018, with a wide scope of digital marketing still yet to put in place. They focused on high quality products and natural ingredients with a small range of CBD Oils for a variety of health related conditions and benefits. The website was relatively new with a blank canvas to work upon in regard to its profile (authority and influence) on the web.

I was not too familiar with CBD products, so found myself doing the normal market research that comes with understanding a companies industry and audience. Although a new and rising industry, I quickly found the CBD market in the UK was highly competitive online. With many brands either being newly established or well grounded, it appeared to be a market that was on the rise with news brands and shops popping up all the time. Getting a good footing early was going to be an essential step.

Many of the CBD brands I checked out focused their branding around the words Hemp or initials CBD, quickly leading to an array of similar sounding brands names with little distinction. I knew there were positives and negatives with this and identifying them would be a benefit later.
Most competitor websites were online shops, either using Wordpress, Shopify, Wix or similar open source shopping carts. While they looked impressive some fell short on technical quality around page speeds, setup, search optimisation and accessibility. In-fact, a few failed so badly on web accessibility standard compliance that I expect some users would find the website frustrating to use. 

So while the UK CBD Oils market was competitive I knew there were opportunities available in digital marketing to take this newish website up the rankings from ground-zero.

Our CBD digital marketing ideas

So here are some of the CBD marketing ideas we came up with and how we implemented them into a digital marketing strategy.

  1. Search, Technical & Accessibility Optimisation
    We firstly wanted to make the website as near perfect as possible, ensuring the search engine optimisation, the technical quality (the coding) and the accessibility compliance was all at its best. We tested this using a few tools, but a common one you can use is Googles Lighthouse which will check your webpages speed, accessibility, best practices and seo scores out of 100. With the Hemp Bros website we managed to achieve a score of 99 for speed, 94 for accessibility, 79 for best practices and 100 for seo.
    Hemp Bros website Lighthouse Score

    We compared this to one of the better competitors we reviewed and found we had a leading edge since they only scored 28 for speed, 86 for accessibility, 79 for best practices and 88 for seo. So we were certainly on the right track by ensuring our website was the best it could be to start with, rather than trying to market something (a website) that had a few internal issues.
  2. Quality compelling content
    The quality of your written content is important and we knew it had to be original, in an industry that seems to be shouting the same message in slightly re-worded ways. There were also challenges here to address, such as what if a website visitor doesn't know anything about CBD? What is they don't trust the product yet and need some reassuring? What about the customers who know what they are looking for and want technical data from lab reports to see how the CBD oil is made up?

    One thing I found with competitor websites was either they had a great blog system that provided an array of information for customers, or they didn't, and went straight into the technical lingo about CBD strength, mg per dose and ingredients.

    We used the services of a professional copywriter to curate some of the text content that would fit our user requirements and ensure a quality balance for search engines and keyword marketing. It's worth mentioning that the content of your webpage will be coupled with your search optimisation for that page, so you may do these together.

    We also developed a blog into the website to provided more insight to CBD products, help answer common customers questions and provide further information. Additionally the blog serves a purpose in casting a wider net across the web, creating more avenues for users to discover the website while searching for CBD related content. So call that our bonus CBD marketing tips; start a blog.
  3. The link to the best CBD marketing ideas
    The next major action we needed to undertake was link building. That is building links to the website from other websites. The way this works is, links to your website from other websites send signals to search engines that your site is 'recommended'. The more authority a linking website has, who links to you, the more valuable that link is. A websites authority is measured in a variety of ways and is beyond the scope of this post, however think of it like getting a recommendation from someone who has lots of network contacts and influence.

    Link building is a large subject and can be a time consuming task to undertake. You may hire the services of a digital marketing agency or link building agency to do this for you, however be weary that you are not just signing up to something for hundreds of pounds per month just because their sales tactics were convincing. I personally recommend sitting down face to face with a local internet marketer who can provide a quality local service. Plus this supports your local economy and network of creative and marketing professionals.

    What we wanted to do with link building is begin to build a link profile, to help raise the websites authority and profile across the web. We knew this was going to be a long term goal and something that would build steadily.

    The best link setup to use; A link to your website might look like this or it could look like this Keyword Phrase Link (this is link text). Using link text that is written as one of your targetted keywords will provide a higher quality link overall, but it's good to mix it up. So where you can, obtain links to your website that include your targetted keywords in the link text.
    *Note that you do not want links that include the 'rel=”nofollow” attribute, as search engines generally ignore these. So ask for 'followed links'. Also the title=”” attribute should be different to the link text for best accessibility standards, but that's up to the linking website if they care about accessibility or not.

    How to build links to your website;
    1. Post blogs that are original and valuable to the reader (perhaps answer a question, solve a problem, provide a tutorial or guide). Valued content like this can attract links and sharing naturally, so developing a good blog strategy is worth the time and effort in the long run.
    2. Ask for links from other websites. Yes, it can be as simple as this, but expect a low response rate. If you know anyone in business who has a website, ideally in a similar industry, ask them to provide a link to your website.
    3. Are you good at writing and full of information? Find some blogs within your general industry and ask if you can provide a guest post. A guest post is where you write and publish a piece of content on another website, usually bringing insight and value to that blogs readers. Some websites offer paid guest posts, or marketing agencies will say they can get you x-amount of guest posts for x-amount of £. Note Google and other search engines don't condone paid for links and it might hurt your websites rankings if you do it. The best rule of thumb is, keep it genuine and natural, spend the time and hard work creating quality links.
    4. Business directories and listings - While search engines don't love business directories as much as they used to, getting your business listed in the core business directories can all help your overall link building strategy. Look for the free directories, paying for a listing isn't generally the best method, though there are paid options out there.
    5. Image linking - Obtain links from your images that are shown in Google image search. If you have an eye for a great picture, or an artistic flare for creating web infographics then use those skills to get your content on the web and links back to your site.
      Social sites like Pinterest also encourage image linking by allowing users to pin images into their collections and boards. Those pinned images link back to your website and generate you some valuable organic links. So think about what you can do with images and rich media content.
  4. Channel social media traffic to your website
    No doubt your probably already using social media for your CBD marketing ideas, but it's worth ensuring your driving traffic to your web pages and your using the social graph features correctly. When you talk about your CBD brand on social media like Facebook or Twitter you want to provide a link back to your website, so users see your post and visit your site. It's surprising how many small business owners don't do this and miss out on the opportunity. While its good to mix up your social media activity, you certainly need to drive traffic from there to your website.

    The Open Graph Protocol enables any web page to become a rich object in a social graph. For example it is used on Facebook to allow any web page to have the same functionality as any other object on Facebook (like posting an picture and a text description below it).

    To do this, share a link to your website in a post. If you have OpenGraph setup correctly you should see a snapshot of what your sharing in your post, including an image, a title and description of the content. Check your OpenGraph setup here, by pasting a web page address into the Debug search bar.

    Facebook Debugger for social medias Open Graph
    Most websites that use open source platforms will have this already integrated, but your can further optimise it for best results, so do take a look.

    Shares of your website across social media will influence your overall rankings in search engine results. So it's worth doing and ensuring its setup correctly.
  5. Pay Per Click (PCC) ads and ad networks
    A quick fix can sometimes be using PPC, or pay per click ads on places like Google, Bing or Facebook to name a few. While these advertising options provide quick traffic, it can become costly and you have to plan wisely or you risk your return on investment.

    Google's Adwords is probably the most well known and popular PPC ad network available. You simply sign up to Adwords and plan your targetted keywords and bid amount for those phrases. When a user of searches for something like 'Medical hemp drops' or 'Hemp oil drops' Google will display 10 odd organic results and a few paid results. With PPC you would be bidding to be displayed as one of those paid results on the search page. The more you bid the more chance you have of being displayed at the top of page 1. You can set daily budgets and bid amounts for keywords and you can have multiple keywords.

    An important note here for CBD brands is Google does not allow PPC ads that use the letters 'CBD', so you won't be able to have ads that target that phrase. You may also find similar restrictions across other platforms like Bing and Facebook ads.

    You will won't to learn more about PPC advertising before investing in this strategy. There are advertising agencies who will manage PPC advertising for you, but expect to pay a monthly management fee on top of ad spending.
  6. Email marketing your CBD customers
    Use email marketing to keep connected with any existing customers. If you don't have a list of past customers or an existing emailing list, consider adding a sign-up form to your website to start building contacts. You might consider offering free tips or a discount to those who sign up.

    The best way to conduct email marketing is to have a plan and stick to it. With no plan emails can become inconsistent and in-frequent, leaving your subscribed customers in the dark with what your brand is doing. Create a simple emailing schedule and run with it.

    The content of your email messages can be anything you like, but a key rule is to make them valuable to the readers. It might be an exclusive discount, or information, product guidance or developments within the CBD industry. Either way think about what you want to communicate to subscribers and keep it original.
  7. Traditional offline marketing methods
    Don't rule out traditional marketing methods like leaflets, posters, business cards and adverts in local magazines, brochures etc. Offline marketing methods do still work and you may find there is a local market your not tapping into.

    If you are indeed selling CBD oils and Hemp based products, why not create a product leaflet that you can distribute to local health professionals (sports therapists, alternative health practices, counselling centres and massage therapists). They may be able to refer their customers to you for supplements like CBD Hemp oils and creams. Of course some therapists may be attached to a certain brand, but others will have waiting rooms with a variety of health related leaflets which could include yours.

    Magazine and brochure advertising is another traditional marketing method you could use. Health related magazine advertising, especially nationals, can be expensive although provide a large audience of readers. So do a little research on what people are reading and the reader numbers vs advert costs.

    Also consider local brochures, like local guides, town business brochures, sponsored event brochures etc as they provide much cheaper advertising options direct to a local audience you might be looking to tap into. The readership is usually quite wide ranging, but distributed copies might be in the low numbers (typically 1000 to 5000). These cheap advertising options often come with the added perk of very little to no competition, so you could be the only CBD oils brand advertising.

I hope this post has given you some marketing ideas for CBD brands and marketing CBD products online. This case study is still active and may be updated with more marketing tips and results from ongoing marketing.

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