This is what it takes to turn one cannabis strain into a brand empire…
When it comes to popular weed strains, well-known classics like OG Kush, Purple Haze, or Sour Diesel come to mind.
Among those legendary names sits Girl Scout Cookies (now called “GSC”) – which, back when it was first introduced several years ago, was the “undisputed hottest [cannabis] variety on the California scene,” according to Vice.
Still one of the most sought-after strains in the United States, GSC was the catalyst that created the iconic Cookies brand.
That brand has turned into an empire, and while a household cannabis name has yet to emerge in the U.S., Cookies is about as close as it gets to claiming that title.
Consider this: while an eighth (3.54 grams) of legal cannabis in Los Angeles could cost you as little as $20, just one gram of Cookies would cost you the same amount.
And yet it’s Cookies that draws hundreds of cannabis enthusiasts to wait in line for its products – even on a cold January morning in Baltimore.
In today’s cannabis market, brands that want to maintain this kind of pricing power can’t get away with traditional marketing tactics to win customers.
A Facebook ad just won’t cut it. Instead, to increase brand loyalty, generate more revenue, and have stock prices surge for publicly traded companies, cannabis executives have to get creative.
The Building of a Cannabis Empire
Cookies’ blockbuster success all started with its founder and CEO, Berner.
Berner is much more than your typical cannabis entrepreneur.
He got started in cannabis at the age of 18 when he took a job working behind the counter of a California dispensary. For several years, he learned the ins and outs of the cannabis business before being discovered by the rapper and cannabis icon, Wiz Khalifa.
His affiliation with Khalifa and their shared love of cannabis propelled Berner into the spotlight, especially among cannabis enthusiasts.
This notoriety, coupled with the explosive popularity of the strain that started it all, GSC, was one of the reasons Berner was able to build an entire cannabis empire around one cannabis strain.
He soon went from one popular strain to eight, all of which have their own instantly recognizable branding.
The Power of Celebrity Branding
Celebrity branding can be a powerful tool for creating buzz around a company’s product. That buzz can lead to increased sales and, in turn, can increase the value of your stocks.
As a celebrity in his own right, Berner has had no issues securing those coveted celebrity endorsements.
In fact, just last week, Cookies announced a new partnership with the famed rapper, Rick Ross, to create a custom cannabis brand, Collins Ave.
And unlike many celebrities who can claim their own cannabis brands, Berner lives and breathes his business. He still makes every single decision, according to a recent interview with Green Entrepreneur – which is obvious to anyone who follows him on social media.
Authenticity Is Key
Today, Berner is a bonafide social media influencer with over 231,000 followers on his Twitter account alone, thanks to his authenticity.
He is unapologetic about his cannabis use, he speaks directly to his followers in his own unfiltered voice, and he does not shy away from engaging with his fans.
With great influence comes great responsibility and this is someone who does not take that responsibility lightly.
In response to the looting of his Melrose store in May, he posted a video that went viral when he said, “We can rebuild our store, but you cannot bring someone back to life.”
That statement was shared nearly 5,000 times on Twitter and received a wave of positive responses.
Creating an Icon
Cookies is a uniquely iconic brand that we can all learn from.
It has been so successful at achieving recognition that it has an entire line of merchandise flaunting its logo, which has proven to be just as popular as its cannabis products.
— Berner (@berner415) July 12, 2020
Between the high-quality cannabis Cookies has become known for, its continued notoriety through partnerships with pop culture icons, and Berner’s rare authenticity, it’s no wonder this brand has such a massive cult following of advocates.
Cookies is not a publicly traded company, but it is one you should be watching.
Because in today’s cannabis market, the pricing power goes to the brands that can draw lines around the block.
Folks like you want to narrow your investments to those cannabis companies operating in the sectors where it’s easiest to maintain pricing power. Find out which two sectors are best positioned to pay you a return.
6 responses to “Crazy About Cookies: How This California Cannabis Brand Gained a Cult Following”
July 13 2020