Why We Should Brand CBD Separately from THC
Just about every cannabis user knows exactly what I’m talking about when I say ‘THC.’ Now, however, what about cannabidiol? Also known as CBD, cannabidiol is relatively new to the world of legal adult use. The second most prevalent phytocannabinoid in the Cannabis sativa plant, CBD by definition is devoid of psychotropic activity. Only some people know what it is, and even less know the potential benefits and uses.
Many recreational users assume CBD is simply a derivative of THC; just another cannabis product that gets you high. This, of course, is not the case. This mistaken similarity is exacerbated in large part by the way cannabis companies are branding THC and in the same way; similar infographics, color schemes, key words, and more. Without proper guidance, adult-use customers are simply not buying into the CBD market.
I recently visited a dispensary here in California and was shocked to see that there were only two CBD pens available on display. When presented with the option of buyingCBD orTHC edibles,their branding is identical, it’s easy to see why a customer would think CBD is unnecessary. It seems they are getting a similar product but without any of the pleasant high.
The best way to increase awareness of the unique benefits of CBD is through education. Highlighting the specific activity of CBD can increase consumer understanding at the point-of-sale. For example, rather than applying generic green, leafy marketing materials to your CBD packaging, consider having the following guideline stamped on your box:
“CBD has analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antineoplastic and chemopreventive activities. Upon administration, cannabidiol exerts its [effect] through various mechanisms… CBD enhances the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), andinhibits cancer cell invasiveness and metastasis.”
- Definition of CBD, National Cancer Institute (1).
CBD is an entirely different experience than THC and should be branded as such. The branding should include information garnered from the growing number of clinical research which underscores CBD’s potential as a treatment for a wide range of neurological conditions. This is perfect for users with anxiety, pain, and inflammation who don’t necessarily want or need to get high.
Rebranding CBD may mean more expenses for the design and production, however, it is worth it if customers can feel they are buying into two completely different experiences with two different products.
Next time you are in a conversation with a group of friends and smoking cannabis, ask them what they know about CBD. The odds are there is probably only one person who knows what it’s about,and that person will be you.