For anyone looking to start up a small business, CBD oil presents an attractive opportunity. Because it only recently became federally legal, no one player dominates that field. And with sales expected to hit $22 billion by 2022, there’s still room for more companies to take a piece.
You do; however, need to do your homework. Under regulations from the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD oil is only federally legal if it comes from industrial hemp, which contains no more than 0.3 percent THC. Cannabis that contains more THC is still illegal because that’s the stuff that gets people stoned.
You also need to understand the restrictions on marketing it. Its legal status in some U.S. states still isn’t clear, which has made some advertising venues cautious. As noted elsewhere on this site, some social media companies are among them.
But such is the popularity of CBD that political pressure will likely overcome these obstacles shortly. In the meantime, read up on the best types of CBD oil to sell, and what they can do.
1. CBD tinctures
Tinctures are very popular in the CBD market because they’re fairly fast-acting, long-lasting, and flexible.
While these are sometimes labeled “hemp oil,” the actual oil in it doesn’t have to come from hemp. CBD itself, once extracted, is a crystal, so you dissolve it in a vegetable oil of your choice. Since CBD plays well among people concerned with health and wellness, it’s best to choose a healthy oil, like MCT oil.
Tinctures normally come in bottles with droppers, which deliver the oil into the user’s mouth or whatever food and drink they want to use. Drops under the tongue can go directly into the bloodstream, so the effects only take half as long to show up as swallowing – 30 minutes vs. an hour. The bioavailability is also higher that way.
Ah, yes, bioavailability – that’s a concept you definitely need to know for marketing CBD. That means the percentage of the CBD in the product that actually makes it to the user’s bloodstream and therefore has an impact. We’ll hear more about this.
2. CBD vape-oil
Inhaling CBD oil is a great way to get it into your system fast – usually inside of 15 minutes. Its bioavailability is also very high. The only disadvantage is that it doesn’t last as long; usually two or three hours as opposed to six to eight by other methods.
Some people vape CBD tincture oil, but this isn’t always a good idea. Chronic inhalation of MCT oil can actually damage the lungs.
So formulating a special oil just for vapes can both be healthy and good marketing. Vapers have their own subcultures, being mostly younger and hipper than the middle-aged women who otherwise form the core CBD customer base. Different designs and set of advertising venues can help distinguish your vape products.
3. CBD capsules
Capsules filled with CBD oil can be very convenient for some customers. You don’t have the risk of spillage that you’d get with a dropper, and you can get exactly the same dose every time.
Capsules do have the lowest bioavailability of all the internally taken CBD products. They have to go all the way through the digestive system before hitting the bloodstream, which destroys a lot of the CBD along the way. So keep this in mind when recommending dosages.
4. CBD topicals
CBD applied topically has no bioavailability per se, but many people do find that it helps ease aches and pains.
You can use straight CBD oil for this, but many companies also formulate CBD versions of popular skin products, such as moisturizers, menthol rubs, and pain-relief creams. CBD bath bombs are also a thing, using popular essential oils for aromatherapy as a bonus.
5. CBD specialty blends
As with topicals, you can make internal CBD combo products for special uses.
For instance, some companies sell unique “sleep” versions of their oils or capsules, with over-the-counter supplements blended in. Since CBD appeals to a natural-remedy crowd, melatonin and herbal sedatives like chamomile and valerian are useful add-ons.
You can also create a nutritious version with vitamins and minerals, creating a convenient all-in-one health supplement. You can even go for pet-oriented versions with foods and flavors that appeal to particular animals.
Really, the creativity with which vendors are coming up with new CBD products all the time is endless. Use your imagination.
A final note on CBD marketing
The science behind CBD oil continues to reveal more beneficial effects of CBD for the human body. And as more research is conducted, a larger body of work surrounds the positive notions that involve CBD as a natural alternative.
One thing to be aware of is that the FDA doesn’t consider any health benefits of CBD to be sufficiently “proven” due to the lack of in-depth, long-term studies. With that being said, you have to be prepared to use the power of suggestion rather than direct claims if you want to continue advocating for CBD and educating the public.
With the “green rush” in full bloom, you can still make a killing in CBD oil.
Contributed by Amy, content contributor for the cbdMD Blog, spent 17 years as a business reporter in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. In her free time, she enjoys reading, traveling, visiting museums, watching movies, and fantasizing that she’ll one day finish her novel.