CBD offers are not a novelty in affiliate marketing industry. This niche appeared in 2018 when the FDA made CBD legal for some kinds of medicinal use. However, it has been extremely difficult to find the balance marketing-wise:
- CBD or cannabidiol is only one out of 80 active chemical compounds in cannabis, but is still strongly associated with marijuana and drug abuse;
- It is difficult no navigate the legal boundaries of CBD product use: it is considered appropriate only for specific kinds of illness (e.g. epilepsy) and only in some countries;
- Brick-and-mortar shops that started to appear since 2018 did not have enough time to earn the trust of customers before the 2019 pandemic;
- On the other hand, the “newly-discovered” remedy was advertised so much that too many decided to jump on that bandwagon and created extremely high competition in the niche.
As a result, only some CBD brands managed to survive and still be active in 2022. These are the companies that invested in e-commerce from the beginning, introduced subscriptions (before it became mainstream!) to improve brand loyalty, and attracted the audience with targeted ads. This survival kit will not save a new brand now, but it turned out to be enough in the dawn of the CBD vertical.
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CBD comes is a huge variety of shapes from gummy bears and toothpicks to tinctures and skin creams. How do you link the audience with the exact product? Over the last years we have seen several customer profile emerge.
- Younger people (at any rate, not older than 45), mostly millennials.
- They are educated professionals who live in cities.
- Their pain points are mainly linked to work and a stressful routine that leaves no chance for a healthy work-life balance.
- Such people want to treat themselves with small but nice things and care for their mental health.
- Use TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter.
- Love tutorials and online learning.
- Prefer smaller brands and eco-friendly products.
- Make an accent on stress relief effect of the product.
- Provide more information about the ways the product works and how it is produced.
- Promote edibles and smaller-sized products that are easy to carry around and to use on the go.
- Stress the green nature of the product and use the word “hemp” more.
- Over 50 years, active but growing weaker towards retirement.
- Like thorough care and cure, prefer “medical” style of products.
- Mostly live in smaller towns.
- Suffer from joint and muscle pains and other age-related illnesses.
- They want to regain agility and strength.
- Usually are on a tighter budget and don’t like to spend much.
- Trust officials, newspapers, and doctors more than younger people.
- Use Facebook and Twitter.
- Accentuate the pain relief effect.
- Promote tinctures and balms that have a “prescription” feeling to them.
- Use news and professional’s advice approaches for your creatives and texts.
- Stress the simplicity of the cure (that old hemp we all knew since childhood!) and the following affordability.
Where to get CBD offers
Here you can find some of the available CBD offers and you can also filter through the list of relevant affiliate programs (e.g. CBDAffs, CrakRevenue, and Olavivo). Another place to find a slew of CBD offers is OfferVault where you can browse through a ton of options, check out the landing pages, and get to know the terms.
How to make it work
We’ll break down two major traffic sources: Facebook and Google Ads, and talk about general good practices that will get your CBD campaigns going.
In the eyes of Google’s — one rule to ban them all — policy, all CBD products fall into the category of “Unapproved pharmaceuticals and supplements”. This means that you are likely to be banned even if you promote other things while having a CBD product listed on your website. However, if you change the names to “hemp oil/toothpicks/gummies” and not CBD you will be able to launch. Although bear in mind that Google is keeping an eye on such things and “hemp” campaigns also have a lifespan of mere weeks.
Facebook’s official stand is that all CBD produce is unacceptable. However, you still see CBD ads on FB and Instagram from time to time. To circumvent the restriction, marketers create a website with zero mentions of CBD nature of the promoted product, no CBD in filenames, and tags. And from such a clean prelander you can drive leads to a real CBD vending store.
On this website, you will find a couple more tricks to get CBD products on Facebook and Instagram ads. And here are some creatives that made it to Facebook feed:
And these are from the Instagram feed:
Good practices for CBD
- It is possible to advertise CBD products on such platforms as Outbrain, Impact, or ShareaSale, for instance. These sites accept open CBD advertising in a slew of formats. There are more CBD-friendly platforms out there, check this guide to find the best one for your needs.
- Use prelanders that don’t mention CBD at all and stress that the product is made of hemp or something like a “natural plant-based product”.
- Instead of promoting a product concentrate on promoting a brand with a fashionable eco/green style.
- Don’t make any medical claims and describe the generally known properties of hemp.
- CBD products are allowed on Instagram and Facebook, but only as top application products, not consumables.
- TikTok and YouTube don’t allow open promotion of CBD offers. Only cloaking or multi-stage funnels will help you there.
- It is better to run CBD offers with influencers and artists because social networks rank their posts as organic content, while your ad manager posts will rank as paid ads and will have to comply with more rules and endure more scrutiny. Yes, creator posts are paid ads, don’t tell Facebook though.
- And here is a list of topics that you should bear in mind while advertising for the US and most Tier-1 GEOs.
CBD offers are a great fit for more experienced marketers who are willing to invest their effort in researching the audience and the local market. Seeing that it’s mostly Europe and the United States that are overly enthusiastic about the hemp-based cures and supplements, the campaigns promise to be rather profitable.