B2B Email Marketing Trends for the Cannabis Industry in 2023

The secret to successful B2B email marketing in 2023 will come down to strategy and adding value. This is true in the cannabis industry just as it is in other industries. Email users receive so many messages each day that the days of sending one sales message after another are over. In 2023, successful email marketing will require a more strategic approach that meets recipients where they are in the buyer journey. 

According to Litmus, email marketing drives an ROI of $36 for every dollar spent, which is higher than any other channel. However, to ensure your business has a chance of generating positive ROI from your email marketing investments in 2023, you need to understand the email marketing trends that are working and will continue to work in the coming months.

Familiarize yourself with the five B2B email marketing trends for the cannabis industry discussed below so you can develop effective strategies and campaigns in 2023 and beyond. 

1. Hyper-Personalization

In 2023, personalization is good, but hyper-personalization is so much better! In fact, it’s the leading email marketing trend of 2023. Embrace it and your results will improve. Ignore it and you’ll find your messages in spam and junk folders.

Research shows there is a big opportunity still available to businesses that go all in on personalization. According to Twilio Segment’s Customer Engagement Report 2022, 80% of consumers spend an average of 34% more when their experience with a brand is personalized. 

However, Salesforce’s State of the Connected Consumer report reveals there is a large gap between what consumers expect related to personalization and how well they think companies are meeting those expectations:

  • 73% of consumers expect companies to understand their needs and expectations but only 51% believe companies generally understand their needs and expectations.
  • 62% of consumers expect companies to adapt (i.e., personalize) based on their actions and behaviors, but only 47% of consumers think companies actually do so.

The good news is it’s easy to personalize email subject lines, content, offers, images, and more when you send campaigns to cannabis license holders using the Cannabiz Media License Database. The built-in email editor tool provides all of the features you need to hyper-personalize every message you send. 

2. Microsegmentation

Hubspot’s 2023 Marketing Strategy & Trends Report reveals that the two most effective strategies for email marketing campaigns are subscriber segmentation (78%) and message personalization (72%). The truth is, segmentation and personalization go hand-in-hand.

You can’t create hyper-personalized email campaigns if you don’t segment your recipient audience into niche audiences. That’s what microsegmentation is all about! To microsegment your audience, you need to leverage all of the demographic, behavioral, and psychographic data that you have about each recipient. 

The trick to microsegmenting your audience successfully is to create your email campaign (including each personalized version to match your audience segments), and then ask yourself if the message is relevant to every person on each list. Will every person on each list be happy to receive your message? If not, you haven’t segmented your list enough or personalized your message enough.

Don’t be intimidated by microsegmentation. It’s easy if you have the right tools! For example, you can microsegment cannabis license holder recipients and create personalized email campaigns for each audience using the data and features in the Cannabiz Media License Database.

3. KPIs

Most email marketers track a number of key performance indicators to determine how well their campaigns perform. The three most popular metrics to get a baseline understanding of how well an email subject line, content, and call-to-action performed with recipients are open rate, click-through rate, and click-to-open rate. For many email marketers, things changed when Apple released new privacy updates known as mail privacy protection (MPP) in September 2021.

Without going into the technical details, when Apple released iOs15, iPadOS 15, macOS Monterey, and watchOS 8, new MPP features were added to protect users’ data from third-party apps, including email marketing platforms. That meant email marketers would not get data when Apple users opened their messages. In other words, open rate data would not be accurate, and there would be no way of knowing how well subject lines performed with recipient audiences. 

Here’s how Apple explained what the new features would mean:

“In the Mail app, Mail Privacy Protection stops senders from using invisible pixels to collect information about the user. The new feature helps users prevent senders from knowing when they open an email, and masks their IP address so it can’t be linked to other online activity or used to determine their location.”

This news wasn’t good for marketers who rely on tracking data not only to determine how well their email marketing campaigns perform but also how integrated digital marketing investments perform. 

However, the news wasn’t as bad for B2B marketers in the cannabis industry. Digging into the data in the Cannabiz Media License Database shows that very few cannabis license holder employees and businesses open email messages sent through the License Database on Apple devices or use Apple email addresses. 

In other words, Apple’s change had a miniscule effect on data reliability and KPIs among marketers who send emails to cannabis license holders through the Cannabiz Media License Database! 

While you should definitely start thinking about shifting the KPIs you track in 2023 – under the assumption that Google, Microsoft, and other companies will add features similar to Apple’s to their operating systems in the future – it’s not something you need to do immediately if you’re using the Cannabiz Media License Database to email cannabis license holders. 

4. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning 

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are hot topics in every industry these days, and they’ll continue to dominate email marketing conversations in 2023. Both artificial intelligence and machine learning can be used to improve email marketing results, streamline processes, and boost ROI. 

In 2022, we’ve seen more and more tools launched that leverage both artificial intelligence and machine learning to increase productivity and efficiencies, and even more will debut in 2023. Keep in mind, not all AI-powered tools are worth the price. For example, AI copywriting tools don’t produce the same quality that an experienced writer can create – not even close! 

However, there are AI-powered tools that can help you get better email marketing results. You just need to do your research, test before you buy, and make sure the tools you try actually deliver the results you need. 

The Cannabiz Media License Database delivers the results email marketers need with its AI-powered list clean up and send time optimization features. When you send email marketing campaigns to cannabis license holders through the Cannabiz Media License Database, you can use the built-in tools to ensure you’re sending your messages at the right time – when each recipient is most likely to open. As a result, you’ll get the best possible results.


5. Interactivity

Interactive email messages became more popular in 2022, and the trend will continue in 2023. Interactivity refers to actions recipients have to take to engage with your message. In addition to clicking on links, interactivity can include tapping, swiping, and watching animated content. Roll-over image effects, mini-games, and surveys also add interactivity to email messages.

For example, including an animated GIF that shows how your product works or shows multiple products in an animated slide show can be an effective way to provide more information without including multiple images or a lot of text. 

While interactivity is popular and can work well to boost engagement with your messages, you need to be careful. Interactive elements can be spam triggers that lead email service providers to send your messages to spam and junk folders rather than inboxes or block your messages from being delivered at all. 

If you add animated GIFs or other interactive elements to your email marketing messages, check to confirm the HTML file size of the message does not exceed 100 kb. Interactive elements can cause the HTML file size of your message to skyrocket, and if it exceeds 100 kb, your messages may not make it to inboxes. 

Another spam trigger related to interactivity that you should avoid is embedding videos in your message content. Instead, include an image in the message that represents the video and link the image to the video on your website. Recipients should need to click on the image to watch the video.

Key Takeaways about B2B Email Marketing Trends for the Cannabis Industry in 2023

If you want your email marketing campaigns to succeed and drive adequate ROI in 2023, you have to prioritize the five trends discussed above: hyper-personalization, microsegmentation, shifting KPIs, interactivity, and artificial intelligence and machine learning. 

You can leverage all of these trends in your email marketing when you subscribe to the Cannabiz Media License Database and send email campaigns to cannabis and hemp license holders in the United States and international territories. Schedule a demo to see how it can help you improve your results and reach your goals in 2023 and beyond!

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