How to Advertise CBD on Facebook
Advertising CBD on Facebook is possible but comes with a long-term risk for a short-term reward. Facebook’s advertising policies do not mention CBD once, so you may assume that advertising CBD is straightforward. Once you run ads for CBD on Facebook, you realize how discriminatory Facebook is against CBD ads. Getting your CBD ads approved on Facebook is nearly impossible unless you follow the steps below…
Can You Promote CBD in Paid Advertising?
Yes, you can promote CBD in paid advertising. Still, it comes with some restrictions, and circumventing them has serious long-term risks to your brand. Since Facebook owns Instagram, you could expect similar restrictions on Instagram as Facebook when promoting CBD.
What is Allowed in Facebook CBD Advertising?
Ingestible CBD is not allowed in Facebook cbd advertising. This means you cannot promote CBD tinctures, CBD gummies, CBD smokables, CBD capsules, or any other ingestible CBD in CBD Facebook ads. According to a Facebook Spokesperson, “Our policy remains the same: We don’t allow people to promote CBD or ingestible hemp in Facebook ads. The update to non-ingestible hemp in Facebook ads was made months ago,” Under Facebook’s ads policy, CBD is considered an “unsafe substance.” However, an update now allows non-ingestible hemp in Facebook ads such as topicals to be advertised on the platform as long they do not contain CBD and have no mention of CBD in the ads or the landing page.
Lastly, you could use CBD facebook advertising brand awareness campaigns that educate Facebook users on CBD and how CBD works. However, brand awareness advertising campaigns on Facebook cannot mention CBD products anywhere in the ad or on the landing page. The purpose of brand awareness campaigns is to generate interest in CBD on Facebook and capture that interest on your email list. Once you have their emails, you could continue marketing to the audience until they are ready to purchase from your brand.
Another option requires your brand to take the long-term risk of possibly being permanently banned from Facebook advertising.
- Advertise CBD products directly on Facebook for a short period before Facebook takes your ads down.
- Generate short-term revenue and traffic that you could capture with an email list.
- Only short term, so eventually, Facebook will catch on and permanently suspend your ad accounts.
- Have to continuously keep creating new websites, creative, copy, and ad accounts.
- Once banned from Facebook, Facebook will not give your brand another opportunity in the future to advertise on Facebook.
The consequences could be steep for your brand; if you do not believe us, take it from Lacey Steffes, the founder and operator of Spa Serenity, located in Baraboo, Wisconsin. She offers a wide range of CBD-infused treatments, and she was Facebook advertising. Until she tried publishing an ad on Facebook featuring a marijuana leaf along with the word “CBD” in the ad’s copy, once she published the ad, her account was permanently terminated by Facebook immediately.
Over the past two years, she invested over $42,000 on Facebook ads for her small business, which was her main source of leads and revenue. She was devastated to a point her husband had never witnessed before.
“She was devastated to a point her husband has never witnessed before.”
If you are willing to take on the risk, continue reading to discover how to circumvent Facebook’s advertising policies and get your CBD ads approved. If you are unwilling to take on the risk, continue reading to find out where you could advertise CBD products without restrictions.
How to Get Your CBD Ads Approved in Facebook Ads?
Step 1: Create a Compliant Landing Page
When creating your CBD ad from your ad account, you could set up an ad that mirrors a brand awareness campaign. Only initially to receive approval from Facebook to run your ads on their platform. Remember that you cannot mention CBD products anywhere in your ad or landing page.
Step 2: Edit The Landing Page After Approval
Once Facebook has approved the landing page, you could edit it afterward to include links to your CBD product pages. Be aware that Facebook uses robots that may review your landing page after approval. When these robots review your landing page again, your ads will come down. This is a short-term revenue generator because, inevitably, your ads will come down at some point. Hopefully, your ads will be up long enough to generate a return on your investment.
Facebook’s Two Strike Policy
Facebook and Instagram have a two-strike policy meaning they may not remove your ad and ban your ad account after the first strike. However, Facebook has been known to ban accounts permanently, even on the first strike.
They are a bit unpredictable so keep this in mind when evaluating the risk versus reward of running CBD ads on Facebook, especially if you have spent time building up an organic presence on Facebook and Instagram for your CBD brand. Running CBD ads from the same social media account where you have a large organic social media following is not worth the risk of getting your account permanently removed from Facebook or Instagram.
Where could you advertise CBD Products without restrictions?
- Search Engine Optimization
SEO delivers the highest return on investment out of all top cannabis marketing and advertising channels for CBD companies. For those unfamiliar with SEO, it is a marketing and advertising tactic for CBD brands that generate revenue and traffic from organic search results. Search engines like Google, Bing, and DuckDuckGo have organic and paid search results. The organic search results receive 94% of all the clicks, and the paid search results only receive 6% of the clicks.
Paid search results require your CBD brand to continue paying to receive traffic and revenue. However, advertising CBD in the paid search results is banned, so that is not an option. On the other hand, organic search results can only be earned, not bought, and the only way to earn revenue and traffic from the organic search results is by using a process called Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
The traffic and revenue you earn using SEO continue for your business even if you stop investing in SEO. More so, your investment in SEO compounds over time; similar to compound interest at the beginning, your investment may deliver minimal returns at best. Over time as you consistently invest in SEO, your returns begin doubling month over month.
“Over time, as you consistently invest in SEO, your returns begin doubling month over month.”
CBD brands with brand new websites receive fantastic results after 12-18 months of investing. CBD businesses with established websites that have previously invested in SEO begin to see fantastic returns on investment after the 6th to the 12th month mark. Search engine optimization is a long-term strategy best suited for brands who want to get to the next level by increasing ROI and profit margin while lowering cost per acquisition using leveraged SEO marketing. Only invest in an SEO company if your brand has an established presence with consistent revenue.
- Email Marketing
Email marketing is not a traffic generation tactic, so do not expect to generate new interest using email marketing. The key benefit to email marketing is to capture SEO traffic or advertising traffic that is not ready to purchase CBD from your brand yet. Most CBD brands generate large amounts of traffic, but only a small percentage directly converts into revenue. Using email marketing, your brand could capture traffic that is not directly converting into revenue. Then continue to market to that audience by sending marketing emails to them, and over time they convert into new revenue for your brand.
More so, you could use email marketing to increase your lifetime value of a customer by keeping your existing customer base engaged and up to date on your brand’s products and offers.
- Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is the best short-term revenue generator for CBD businesses. With affiliate marketing, you receive immediate access to your ideal audience. You only pay for that access when it drives conversions for you. For those not familiar with affiliate marketing, it is where you create an affiliate program where blogs, vlogs, podcasters, influencers, email marketers, and anyone with an audience can sign up and promote your CBD products in exchange for a commission when they sell your products. This means you only pay when you make money.
The key to successful affiliate marketing is nailing your value proposition and positioning and providing the resources for affiliates to market your products successfully, along with a competitive commission scale that is attractive to affiliate marketers. Remember that your business is selling affiliates on why they should promote your products over all the others they could promote. A great ROI for affiliate marketing is about $5 earned for every $1 you invest compared to paid advertising. A great ROI is $4 earned for every $1 you invest.
- Programmatic Display Advertising
You may be familiar with the Google Display Network, where brands can advertise directly on websites, apps, or podcasts across the web in banner advertising and display advertising since CBD is banned from being promoted on the Google Display Network. The alternative is programmatic display advertising; it is the same as the Google Display Network, except you use third-party software to purchase ads automatically. Instead of having Google’s Display Network purchase the ads for you or manually negotiating and bidding on display advertising. Here are three steps to how it works:
- You purchase an ad using an ad exchange.
- You place your bid against your competitors on the ad exchange.
- Your ad will be displayed if you outbid your competition.
- Organic Social Media Marketing
Organic social media marketing is creating content that resonates with your ideal customer audience on social media platforms without paid advertising. Instead of paying for advertising to promote your content, you are responsible for organically promoting your content on social media platforms.
Understanding how to create viral content and content marketing is key to crushing it using social media marketing. The main challenge for CBD brands is that some restrictions depend on the social media platform when creating content about CBD and promoting CBD products.
Frequently Asked Questions About CBD Advertising
Can I Advertise CBD Products on Facebook?
No, you cannot advertise CBD products on Facebook using paid advertising. The only exception is non-ingestible hemp, such as topical hemp products, which do not contain CBD or mention CBD in the ad or landing page. When posting content on Facebook with paid promotion, you may be able to post about CBD products for sale. However, there is no mention of CBD in Facebook’s community standards. We have seen some brands successfully posting about CBD without paying for advertising on their Facebook pages.
However, Facebook’s community standards do not allow posting content on non-medical drugs. It considers CBD a drug in its advertising guidelines. Instagram, which is owned by the same parent company Meta that owns Facebook, has guidelines that say the same thing. We have seen brands successfully posting about CBD on Instagram too. Remember that your social media account could be banned at any moment since the regulations of CBD in the content on Facebook and Instagram are unclear. Facebook and Instagram accounts have been terminated in the past for posting about CBD.
Can You Advertise CBD on Facebook 2022?
As long as your ad is a brand awareness campaign that is not directly promoting CBD or CBD products and only educating about CBD, you could advertise CBD on Facebook in 2022.
Can You Sell CBD on Facebook Marketplace?
No, you cannot sell CBD on Facebook Marketplace; this is against Facebook Marketplace’s Guidelines. According to Facebook, ingestible supplements are prohibited from listing on Facebook Marketplace. Facebook says, “Listing may not promote the buying or selling of ingestible supplements.” Even Amazon does not allow the sale of CBD on their platform.
Can You Advertise CBD on Instagram?
No, you cannot advertise CBD on Instagram. Non-ingestible hemp does not contain CBD. As long as the ad does contain the words ‘CBD’ and the landing pages do not mention CBD, non-ingestible hemp is allowed to advertise. Brand awareness ads educate consumers about CBD without mentioning CBD products; the linked websites do not mention CBD products for sale. Brand awareness ads like those are allowed.
Instagram CBD Policy 2022
Instagram does not have a CBD policy that directly mentions CBD in 2022. According to Facebook’s Terms and Policies, ads on Instagram must not violate Instagram’s Community Guidelines. The guidelines do not mention CBD once, but they do have the following to say about non-medical drugs and pharmaceutical drugs:
“Buying or selling non-medical or pharmaceutical drugs are also not allowed. We also remove content that attempts to trade, coordinate the trade of, donate, gift, or ask for non-medical drugs, as well as content that either admits to personal use (unless in the recovery context) or coordinates or promotes the use of non-medical drugs.”
Even though CBD is not a drug both Facebook and Instagram consider CBD a non-medical drug, and Epidiolex is a pharmaceutical drug containing CBD. For these reasons, Instagram does not allow ads or content that promotes CBD for sale.
Can You Advertise CBD on Google
The only way to promote CBD on Google is by using CBD SEO to generate revenue and traffic from the organic search results. The paid advertising of CBD for sale on Google is against Google’s guidelines. Since CBD is one of the unapproved pharmaceuticals and supplements on Google, CBD is banned from advertising on their platform.
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