Forget the dated “dazed and confused” cliché of chronic cannabis consumers. Today’s millennials and Gen Yers are more likely to seek a state of mind that is enhanced and mindful, according to new research by Miner & Co. Studio.
The New York-based marketing firm surveyed 800 regular users in Colorado, Washington and California, and found that 95% of them reported consuming pot as part of their wellness and self-care regimens alongside diet and exercise.
Less than one in three said they used primarily to get stoned.
For most participants – 65% male and 35% female between ages 25 to 39 – cannabis is also seen as a healthier, less addictive and more natural alternative to substances such alcohol and prescription or over-the-counter drugs.
CEO Robert Miner says it is time for the stoner stereotype to finally be cashed.
“In the new political and social landscape, mass media’s portrayal of cannabis consumers will need to evolve as well,” said Miner. “Just as drinking a beer doesn’t mean someone is a drunk or an alcoholic – simply consuming cannabis doesn’t make him or her a zoned out stoner. Media has an opportunity to present the new cannabis consumer in a more positive light to overcome the stoner stereotype that still casts a stigma on the consumers in this vast and growing market.”
The study also found good branding and packaging is becoming increasingly important, with 80% saying it plays a role in their purchasing choices. Having a celebrity-backed brand is also seen as a positive, especially when that celebrity has “cannabis clout” like Willie Nelson, Snoop Dogg and Whoopi Goldberg. Six in 10 said that a celebrity association is at least somewhat important to them when choosing to try a new cannabis brand.
However, consistent quality was key for them to keep purchasing a cannabis product, with more than 90% saying they buy based on flavour, taste and the type of high.