Social Media Consumer Insights on Who the CBD Industry Should Be Targeting
From CBD gummies to CBD bath bombs, the market for CBD is growing stronger day by day. Investment bank Cowen & Co’s recent report predicted that the CBD market will hit $16 billion by 2025. With such immense growth, we couldn’t help but to use Synthesio’s social listening platform to take a closer look at what people are saying online about CBD. Today, we’re diving deep into the CBD market and using social media consumer insights to discover who the industry should be targeting.
What exactly is CBD?
Let’s start with the basics. CBD is an abbreviation for cannabidiol (ka-ne-buh-DI-ol). According to Dr. Peter Grinspoon from Harvard Health Publishing , cannabidiol is the “ second-most prevalent ” active ingredient of cannabis, or marijuana. The first is THC, or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, which produces the primary psychoactive effects associated with marijuana. But the CBD that’s found in CBD products is derived not from cannabis, but from the hemp plant. By itself, CBD does not cause a “high.”
In the medical community, cannabidiol has proven effectiveness in treating cases of childhood epilepsy. Last year, the FDA approved Epidiolex , a drug containing CBD, to treat rare and severe forms of epilepsy.
Outside of prescription medicine, CBD has grown to be one of today’s hottest ingredients, commonly used to address anxiety, insomnia, pain, and other conditions. For our research purposes, we divided CBD products into four major sectors: sublingual, inhalation, oral, and topical.
Sublingual : Use of CBD oils, which is often taken by placing a few drops under the tongue
Inhalation : CBD vape pens
Oral : Edible capsules, gummies, chocolate bars, etc. which contain CBD
Topical : Any product that’s meant to touch the skin or scalp, usually in the form of lotions, creams, shampoos, bath products
What insights does social media give us?
Let’s start by looking at the volume alone. After analyzing online conversations about CBD within the past year, our social listening platform found that the volume of conversations has been steadily increasing.
Then, we looked at which CBD products are talked-about most. To those already familiar with the industry, it may not be surprising that the sublingual sector of the CBD industry is the most popular. Around two-thirds of online conversations about CBD products were specifically about CBD oils!
Our numbers align with recent surveys evaluating CBD usage. Of all surveyed CBD users, 48% report using oils. The second-most-popular CBD products are vape pens, which 37% of users use, followed by ingestible products, like edibles and capsules.
Now that we know what people are talking about, let’s take a look at where people are talking. Unsurprisingly, Twitter’s in the first place, hosting around half of the conversations about CBD! Next, a shocking 25% of conversations took place on forums (a.k.a. Reddit). In third place was Instagram, where around 10% of discussions took place.
Why is it necessary to understand the what, where, and why of online conversations about CBD? A National Institutes of Health report stated that 38% of people found out about CBD from Internet research. That’s only 3% behind the 42% of people who heard about it from a family member or friend!
A significant portion of existing CBD users and (presumably) the industry’s target audience is getting information online. It’s word-of-mouth, through the Internet. Knowing where people read and engage is just step one of creating a targeted marketing campaign.
Social Media Consumer Insights on Generational Differences
So who’s talking about CBD online? Turns out, maybe an age group you didn’t expect.
Unsurprisingly, adults aged 18-35 are the most vocal about CBD online. But here’s the outstanding part: some 45-55-year-olds are also using the Internet to talk about it.
We were curious about whether there are differences in how different age groups approach CBD. Recent research has found that adults aged 18-24 and 25-34 are more likely to associate CBD with treating anxiety, whereas other age groups associated it with pain relief.
We decided to check out whether social media reflected this bias.
The age demographics of social media users who mention CBD and anxiety together are clearly concentrated in their twenties and early thirties.
The age range of social media users who mention CBD and pain is more varied. Notice the increase in users aged 35-45 and 45-55. Also, when compared to anxiety-related posts, take note of the dramatic decrease in users aged 18-25.
It appears that older users are more interested in the pain relief benefits of CBD, while younger users are more interested in the anxiety-reducing effects. This insight should drive marketing campaigns.
On our platform, we even found tweets that highlighted this difference. While younger adults tend to mention CBD with anxiety relief, older adults recommend it for pain relief.
From these insights, we know that demographics both young and old are receptive to using CBD. The trend is heading that way, and the market will grow.
Social Media Consumer Insights Reveal 2 Target Audiences
It’s already been established that CBD oil and CBD vape pens are the top dogs of the industry. The numbers alone tell us that story. Interestingly, though, our platform found a high correlation in the mentions of the two topics. Or, in other words, the volume of conversations behind both topics evolved in a very similar way this past year.
Simultaneously, CBD lotions and gummies also demonstrated a high correlation this past year.
What do these two pieces of information tell us about the industry? Well, we think that there are two distinct target audiences here: a group looking for immediate relief, and one that isn’t. Let us explain.
When thinking about CBD products, we like to talk about bioavailability. This refers to the amount of CBD that’s actually getting into your system. When using oils, the CBD goes directly into your bloodstream, giving you a bioavailability of 20-30%. Similarly, vape pens and cartridges allow the CBD to travel from the lungs into the bloodstream, giving you a bioavailability of 30-40%.
Meanwhile, the bioavailability of CBD gummies is at a meager 5%! And for topically applied products, like lotions, the bioavailability is nearly nonexistent.
What does this mean? This means we have one group of people interested in CBD products whose effects are felt almost immediately. On the other hand, another group is interested in CBD products with small doses, like gummies and lotions. These are two distinct groups of users! With these insights, companies can further narrow down the target audience and develop effective campaigns to reach them.
What does this mean for the industry’s future?
Our social media consumer insights on the CBD industry reveal some important things. One, there’s a demand. And, two, different demographics are open to these products, but in different contexts. Younger audiences see CBD as a treatment for anxiety, while older adults are open to the idea of using it for relief from chronic pain. Some people want immediate relief, while others are interested in products with low dosages. With pharma companies facing growing backlash against opioids and other drug developments, CBD is an expanding industry that warrants a closer look. In the next five years, the field will look vastly different. Now is the time for companies to begin R&D into various applications of CBD, or invest altogether in a promising company. Social media intelligence platforms allow companies to identify growing trends and their target audience before it’s too late to enter the game. Schedule a demo here .
Tag: buyer personas
Digital Product Development from a Marketing Perspective
Successful companies tend to departmentalize their operations to maximize productivity and improve management efficiency. With that said, businesses can’t function if their departments can’t find ways to work together. It’s especially true when it comes to the marketing and product development divisions of an enterprise.
While it’s true that marketing and product development should function separately for the majority of the time, the two departments cross paths at critical moments. Both sections will fall short without collaboration, causing the entire operation to struggle.
With this in mind, marketing professionals need to understand their role in the digital product design and development process. Likewise, developers, designers, and product managers need to embrace the insights and expertise provided by their sales-minded colleagues.
The most helpful information a marketing team can provide product development staff is an insight into the customer’s mind. A company’s marketing department will have the data and experience to fill in the gaps about customer wants and needs. Development teams that lack these crucial resources are at a significant disadvantage. Meanwhile, marketing personnel that can’t relay their findings are failing to reach their full potential.
Marketing professionals tend to be well-versed in what the competition is offering. That information can prove vital to the development of a popular product. While many digital product developers are understandably cautious about getting too wrapped up in what competitors are doing, that doesn’t mean that information isn’t useful. It establishes a baseline, encourages creativity, and drives ingenuity. It can also teach lessons on what not to do going forward.
What company doesn’t want to sell a product that drives consumers wild? While not every business will develop the next iPhone or other revolutionary product, they can take steps to make their products as enticing and exciting as possible. More times than not that involves collaboration with marketing professionals with insight into what customers want.
Life cycle refinement
Quality products are designed with their entire life cycle in mind. Given the inevitability of obsolescence, it’s easy to see how marketing plays a vital role in mapping out the life of a digital product. When the marketing and product development teams work together, the product life cycle can be refined to transition to new generations. That way, customers aren’t blindsided by the need to upgrade. They’ve been briefed courtesy of the marketing department. Meanwhile, the product development team can incorporate marketing insights into their life cycle planning.
Designers and developers need a hype man in their corner. Otherwise, some of the most incredible innovations and improvements can be lost on the consumer. By getting the marketing team involved with product development, companies can develop more exciting ad campaigns. Companies should also consider the benefits of having marketing personnel participate in the product testing phase. That way, the marketing strategy stems from user experience rather than customer expectations.
Products are geared towards the target customer. But what if the target market could expand to include a wider swath of consumers? The sales increase would justify the necessary tweaks during the product development process. However, the potential for market expansion is something developers will likely need marketing pros to explain. In doing so, they help shape future products and grow company revenue at the same time.
It’s clear that large companies perform best when tasks and responsibilities are divided amongst several departments. However, these various sections need to come together from time to time. That’s because the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
With this in mind, product developers and marketing experts must understand the importance of working together. When it comes to launching successful products , you can’t have one without the other.
Keep These Essentials in Your Briefcase at All Times
What do you keep in your briefcase? Does it change from day to day? Does it depend on what’s on your schedule? Do you make changes when you’re traveling?
There is no shortage of briefcase essentials, but remember this: no two people are the same.
For instance, if you’re a traveling salesperson, you won’t have the same items in your briefcase as someone who works from home a few days per week.
There’s no right or wrong answer as to what you should keep in your briefcase. It depends largely on your job, personal requirements, and professional requirements.
With all of that in mind, let’s check out some of the essentials you should consider adding to your briefcase in the near future:
This isn’t to say that you’ll use pain medication every day of the week. In fact, you may never use it. That being said, you want to make sure that you have it available if the situation calls for it.
For example, if you find yourself traveling for the day and begin to suffer from lower back pain, it’s nice to know that you have the medication you need to find relief.
Topical CBD oil
The popularity of CBD products is on the rise. If you’ve yet to learn more about topical CBD oil , now’s the time to do so.
Sticking with the example above, rubbing CBD oil onto your lower back can help reduce or eliminate your pain.
A bottle of topical CBD oil will not take up a lot of space in your briefcase. You’ll feel better about yourself when you always have this nearby.
Pen and paper
Even though you rely heavily on your smartphone, it never hurts to have a pen and paper nearby.
Maybe you want to jot down notes while you’re flying. Or perhaps you need a piece of paper because your phone has died.
You don’t need to overdo it. In most cases, a single pen and a few sheets of paper are more than enough.
There will be times when you have nothing to do but read. And when those times arise, it’s nice to know that you have plenty of reading material in your briefcase.
This can be anything from an ebook that you printed out to an industry trade magazine.
There’s no shortage of reading material out there. Add to your collection regularly and rotate through it as necessary.
There’s a difference between snacks and healthy snacks. The word healthy is key here, as eating poorly can impact your ability to maintain your energy, think clearly, and make it through your day.
For instance, it’s better to eat a banana than a chocolate bar.
Tip: load up your briefcase with healthy snacks that have a long shelf life. This way, you don’t have to change these out on a daily basis.
Frequently asked questions
As noted above, you can keep whatever you want in your briefcase. There are no rules that you need to follow.
As you attempt to put together a briefcase that gives you peace of mind, here are some of the most common questions to address:
- How much space do you have in your briefcase?
- Is there anything you can remove to make more space for the essentials?
- Is it time to upgrade your briefcase?
- How often should you review the contents of your briefcase?
- Do you need to change the contents of your briefcase based on your schedule for the day?
Don’t shy away from these questions or any others that come to light.
Final thoughts on packing your briefcase
It doesn’t matter if you already have a briefcase or you’re comparing some of the better models on the market , there will come a day when you need to decide which essentials to include in it.
Once you have all the essentials in your briefcase, it’s time to put your packing to the test. As days turn to weeks, ask yourself if there’s anything you need to change.
What do you keep in your briefcase? When was the last time you thought about this?