According to a recent study by Consumer Reports of approximately 4,000 Americans, 18-29 year olds is the age group that uses CBD the most. The study concludes that nearly half of the American people in this age range, 40% to be exact, have “tried CBD at least once in the past two years.”
That is a mind boggling number but when you compare that number to the percentage of people who are routinely using over-the-counter pain medication it begins to make a lot more sense. Stat, a publication that covers biotech and pharma, found that “roughly 8 in 10 Americans routinely reach for over-the-counter pain pills to relieve headaches, backaches, sore muscles, fevers, or colds.”
Information like that points to the reason why CBD Up Close believes that, if anything, the projections for substantial growth in the CBD market may be too conservative. Americans, rightly or wrongly, routinely turn to pain medication to alleviate pain. Couple this with the opioid crisis that has only recently been noticed and discussed nationally and it’s no wonder why so many people are turning to CBD as an alternative.
And it’s not only 18-29 year olds who are using CBD in large numbers. Referring back to the Consumer Reports study, 32% of people between the ages of 30 and 44 have used CBD at least once in the last two years, 23% of 45-59 year olds and 15% of people 60+ have also used CBD products at least once in the last two years. Indeed, the study goes on to conclude that over a quarter of all Americans have tried CBD at least once in the past 24 months.
Encouragingly, the CR report also found that “almost three-quarters of people who took CBD said it was at least moderately effective for the main reason they took it, with 48 percent of them saying it was very or extremely effective.”
CBD Up Close – Business Analysis
CBD Up Close believes that there is a tremendous opportunity to break into the 45+ market for CBD use. People of that age suffer from more aches and pains than younger people and have a greater need for pain medication. Figuring out a strategy for reaching these people may yield tremendous results because, based off of what we have seen so far, most of the activity promoting CBD products has been online.
How can businesses reach this age group? Partnerships with celebrities that people from that age group identify with is one way. We recently covered how one company is doing this by partnering with Martha Stewart. People know who Ms. Stewart is and, at least for the millions who watch her shows and/or purchase her products, trust her. The kind of trust garnered from product association with celebrities will without a doubt contribute to the erosion of the remaining hesitation that some people have about using CBD products.
And that brings us into another point, which is that companies need to do a good job educating consumers. Companies need to get the message across to their customers that CBD products do not have any of the hallucinogenic properties that marijuana products have (as long as the CBD products in question don’t have THC). In other words, they don’t give you a high. This may or may not turn out to be a sticking point for consumers in the long run but, for the time being at least, this will be a selling point to consumers and the lack of any THC will probably be needed for a while yet to pass regulatory muster in many locations.
Beyond partnerships, CBD companies can deploy a panoply of tactics to reach older consumers. Examples include: product placements in media that this age group consumes, PR pushes in publications, getting the products placed in brick and mortar stores (like CVS has recently done), and even in-person presentations at places like adult communities.
CBD Up Close is focusing on the older demographic here not because there aren’t obvious opportunities for growth with younger consumers, there certainly are tremendous opportunities here, but because we believe the growth rate in CBD consumption will be very strong with older people. Perhaps more so than with the younger age group by the simple observation that as a percentage of their respective populations, older people are using less CBD products than younger people are. So, while older people are not the age group that uses CBD the most, they may very well experience the highest growth rate in usage in the coming years.