Changing Perception Through Design: Branding in the Cannabis Industry

In the years since cannabis was legalized here in Colorado, we’ve seen a major change in the way the substance is perceived. Long gone are the misconceptions peddled by anti-drug ads and the stereotype of the idiotic deadbeat stoner portrayed in popular culture. The legitimization has opened up a new market of products like gummies, drops and other forms of edibles that are more approachable and familiar. In addition to these new products, packaging for the actual flower itself is reflecting this shift while the branding moves away from stereotypical marijuana imagery commonly associated with the negative stigma around the substance. This approachability is opening up cannabis use to a whole new demographic and good design is part of the reason for this shift. 


Cannabis sales in the U.S. reached $25 Billion in 2021 and is expected to reach $33 Billion by the end of 2022, according to a Fortune.com article . Seattle-based analytics firm Headset reports that edible sales grew by more than 20% between 2020 and 2021. If you look at some of the top brands in this sector of the industry they all employ great brand strategy and beautiful packaging design, website design and logo design. They position their brand to align with the beliefs of this new, growing demographic. These users are utilizing the substance more for its health benefits and less purely for its intoxicating effects. Cannabis brands are starting to position themselves accordingly, creating beautiful branding and packaging that would not seem out of place in the supplement aisle at a Whole Foods.


At Oblique, we used this approach in creating a brand strategy and packaging for Abundant Organics. Learn more about this project in our portfolio and if you feel like your THC brand could use some TLC, don’t hesitate to drop us a line.