The importance of branding and packaging

As the legal cannabis industry becomes a normal part of life in Colorado, Washington, and elsewhere, packaging has emerged as both a safety issue and one of the few ways brands can distinguish themselves from competitors whose products also get people high.

How To Brand, Market, And Sell Marijuana Without Breaking The Law

This quote from a very thorough and fascinating article in Fast Company highlights the reason we started The 420 Agency: as the marijuana market (and industry) become more mainstream, typical market pressures and dynamics start applying. And branding is one of the better and most obvious ways for companies to not only differentiate themselves but also appeal to specific consumer groups. As the article duly notes:

Seeking to expand their customer base, companies are spending big on packaging that resembles what you find in high-end grocery and beauty stores and pharmacies. While some companies use their labels to wink at the industry’s edgy past, shrewd brands believe the right packaging will attract older and professionally established users. That is to say: parents—and their parents, too.


In an industry with restricted opportunities for advertising, packaging can catch customers’ attention on dispensary shelves. But it’s also one of the most powerful tools the industry has to rebrand itself as a mass-market product. 

 But there are very confusing rules, regulations and laws for brands to navigate, especially as it comes to packaging (as the article details in the case of Dixie) and marketing/advertising, as we highlighted yesterday. And as legalization progresses, state regulations and laws typically get more stringent than during the MMJ era. To quote, again, the article:

Colorado still has a medical marijuana program and, confusingly, the packaging rules are not as strict for products characterized as medicinal. Like Dixie, many companies sell both. Medicinal marijuana products don’t have to be divided into appropriate dosing sizes and a package can contain more than 100 mg of THC.

By: JP Clement