Sh*t just got Real
As a growing number of people embrace sticky icky, the California Department of Cannabis Control wanted to make sure folks knew how to find the good stuff. In partnership with Fiona Hutton & Associates we created the Real CA Cannabis campaign to educate consumers on the dangers of unregulated cannabis and make it easier than ever to find licensed dispensaries statewide.
1 — The Challenge
Cannabis is legal—the shop might not be
Nearly 60% of California adults consume cannabis, but most don’t know illegal dispensaries exist—let alone how to spot them. We needed to create a compelling and widespread campaign that equipped new, potential, and longtime cannabis consumers with the knowledge and tools to shop exclusively at licensed retailers. All the while, we had to navigate the DCC’s complex legacy regarding law enforcement and the War on Drugs in order to strike a balance that resonated with California’s diverse communities.
2 — The Brand
Not your mama’s government campaign
Our mission: Make this government project sound and feel like anything but. With fresh yet familiar aesthetics, a grounded and relatable voice, and cultural references ranging from classic rock to 2010s pop, we created a campaign that felt at once new and nostalgic.
3 — The Campaign
We wanted to turn the Real CA Cannabis seal into a symbol synonymous with high-quality trustworthy bud as quickly as possible, so we rolled out a massive multimedia strategy including billboards, digital ads, influencer partnerships, radio spots, and more to get Real CA Cannabis in front of millions of Californians statewide.
4 — The Website
Find Real near you
We built the campaign site to not only provide key background information on Real CA Cannabis, but also quickly point users to our licensee search—the tool we built specifically for this campaign so Californians can easily find legal dispensaries in their area.
5 — The impact
Sparking a new conversation
Real CA Cannabis elevated public awareness around regulated cannabis and highlighted licensed dispensaries in a way California has never seen before. We’re beyond excited to have been able to play a role in creating a safer and healthier cannabis industry, and we’re looking forward to more opportunities to keep moving our communities in the right direction.