Two Washington-based recreational cannabis companies have deployed commercial campaigns, potentially laying the groundwork for the next phase of cannabis advertising.

Both commercials are unique and aesthetically appealing. Avitas Agriculture’s 41-second “Get Creative” spot is the first of a planned three-video campaign for the company. According to Avitas CEO Adam Smith, the content — featuring a 20-something white male smoking concentrates and painting a mountain-scape — is loosely based on an employee who “smokes sativas and paints.”

“I think it’s representative of our brand because it’s fun, it’s irreverent,” Smith said in an interview with Ganjapreneur. “We figure ourselves as being craftsman of our product so we don’t take ourselves seriously about it. We’re representing how some people might use our product in different settings.”

The 93-second music video ad for Mirth Provisions’ Legal soda brand features attendees at a backyard barbecue popping bottles; it utilizes a catchy tune featuring lyrics explaining the potential effects of each of the four flavors.

Adam Stites, founder of Mirth Provisions, said the lyrical content is the most important aspect of the spot because it’s hard to convey on a label what effects a consumer can expect in terms of strength and length.

“In an increasingly crowded world where edibles are all getting commoditized, marijuana is getting more and more complex… it’s overwhelming the consumer,” Stites said. “It’s much more complex than THC. We wanted to have a video that was lighthearted and fun but also communicated what our product was.”

While Mirth Provisions secured director James Westby for their spot — whose film “Rid of Me” was featured at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival — Avitas’ ad was produced by Brandon Van. Van is a 23-year-old extraction technician for Avitas, who plans on attending the Seattle Film Institute in September. He submitted a video resume as part of his Avita application.

The commercial is a first for Van, who recruited friends from college and high school to act in and help produce the spot with the blessing of his boss. He wanted to make sure the final product was “as simple as possible” for the audience to understand, in an effort to expand its marketing potential.

“What was ‘simple’ for me was to have music, no dialogue and a good message,” Van said. “Everyone wants to be creative and people relate weed to creativity… so I figured what’s a better way to do that than a simple painting that the ‘average Joe’ was doing.”

Despite taking different creative paths, both companies created their ads with some discretion, taking the rules governing alcohol advertising and applying them to their own pieces.

Although the Federal Communications Commission has not outlined rules for cannabis commercials, the state Liquor and Cannabis Board rules for advertising prohibit companies from advertising “marijuana or marijuana products in any form through any medium whatsoever within one-thousand feet of the perimeter of a school ground, playground, recreation center or facility, child care center, public park or library, or any game arcade admission to which is not restricted to persons aged twenty-one years or older.”

The board suggests companies consult with the FCC, media-buyers and attorneys for television protocols. The FCC did not respond when questioned about their plans for cannabis advertising.

However, neither company plans on any television media buys. Both companies indicated that they are currently working on publishing the spots as YouTube ads – but YouTube is owned by Google, who has previously rejected medical marijuana ads due to its policy against promoting “dangerous products or services.”

Smith indicated that his company is still working on getting the green light from the world’s largest video sharing site, and said the process “takes time and comes with pretty serious conditions.”

“More than anything it is really just for us to experiment with the medium,” he said. “It’s all brand new. We’re trying to test the boundaries of what is allowed.”

Mirth Provisions’ spot was approved by YouTube “after some initial pushback,” Stites said, on the condition that the ads will air in states with a formal market, to users 21 and older.

Smith did not have a timeline for Avitas’ next videos, but they will have themes of “Get Relaxed” and spending time with friends. Stites anticipates the commercial for his company’s sublingual spray, Drift, will be released in the next 30 days.

Do you own a cannabis industry business? Create a listing in our directory and get discovered by new clients - Click Here

Tags: , | Categories: Cannabis Business News Recreational Cannabis News

Learn about cannabis businesses:

View the directory | Get featured here

  • Dispensary Permits offers “seed to sale” consulting services with hands on support to medical marijuana entrepreneurs. Whether you are looking to break into the industry or you have previous experience with owning or operating a dispensary, cultivation, manufacturing or testing facility; our custom crafted solutions provide support and guidance for both novice and expert medical marijuana entrepreneurs.

  • Viridian Staffing

    Founded in 2013 and dedicated solely to all sectors of the cannabis industry (Medical, Adult Use, Industrial Hemp and Ancillaries), our highly experienced recruiters have over a decade of experience (each) in human resources, staffing and recruiting for Fortune 500/100 companies across a broad spectrum of closely related industries including: food & beverage, agriculture, consumer packaged goods, software, medical technology and paper/pulp.

  • Emerald Elite Consulting

    We are cannabis cultivation specialists. With over 40+ years of combined experience from the heart of American cannabis history and innovation, the Emerald Elite team and its network of cultivators offer a truly unparalleled depth of experience for our clients' advantage. Production of the cleanest, highest quality cannabis in the world is our passion.

  • Releaf App

    Releaf App is a patent pending mobile app that enables patients to track their live sessions with cannabis and record exactly how it’s helping them. It then provides intelligent reporting to help patients learn what types of cannabis and intake methods are working best in treating their symptoms. Patients can share these reports with doctors and/or budtenders to discuss their treatment and identify their best options.

  • Cannabis Cash Solutions

    At Cannabis Cash Solutions we specialize in automating cash handling for marijuana-related businesses. Our turnkey cash management system makes it easy to start protecting your investment today.

  • Distru

    Software built to streamline distribution and manufacturing. Distru provides inventory, order, and customer management for cannabis companies in a centralized platform.

  • TRIM Media House

    TRIM Media House is a full-service digital marketing agency with a heavy focus in visual content creation, website design, photography, and videography. If you are trying to navigate the digital arena when it comes to your brand, we would love to talk to you!

  • Releaf App

    The Dispensary Partnership Program uses data collected from patients, via Releaf App, to provide business analytics to dispensaries (USA) and licensed producers (Canada). This data service is creating a new class of dispensaries that are driven outcomes and patient results. The dispensary partnership program shows symptom-specific patient ratings & analytics for the specific cannabis batches and products in a dispensary’s inventory. Dispensaries use this information to give more informed recommendations at the counter.

  • Fast Capital Financing

    FCF understands the importance of financial stability to ensure the success of your business. That's why we offer loan options delivered by our expert business advisers so you can worry less about working capital, and more about what really matters - running your business! We work with all credit scores and offer an easy online application. You can receive a decision in as little as 24 hours! Contact us now to speak with one of our business advisers.

  • HappyChap Creative

    An upstart design/build/create/help/strategize agency based in the Pacific Northwest. We help good people & companies get the recognition they deserve through clever, honest communication and the right look. We love working with cannabis brands who set a high bar for quality and who emphasize the positive impact that cannabis legalization will have on the world.

  • IndicaOnline

    IndicaOnline is the most trusted Point-of-Sale software in the Medical Marijuana Industry across the U.S. and Canada. Founded in 2010, IndicaOnline combines an intuitive iPad POS software, a user-friendly interface, and an all-in-one hardware unit to accommodate every aspect of a medical marijuana business.

  • Weed Pay LLC

    Weed Pay is a cannabis banking and merchant services company. We think differently than conventional credit card processing companies due to our history of handling high-risk accounts. We are experts in the field of alternative payment options, merchant accounts, and banking. Our mission and vision are to provide needed customer support services to the cannabis industry within these areas.

Want a job in the cannabis industry?

Sign up to apply for unlimited jobs and get discovered by companies who are hiring

Post Your Resume View all jobs

Best vacancies

June 18, 2018

Subscribe for daily cannabis news, announcements, and business insights.