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Safe-Reach has been hitting it hard lately, particularly to some very large publishers in both the traditional space and the mobile space. The first part of the conversation is usually “Wait…what…programmatic cannabis!!!” The next part of the conversation is of course, how do you do it?  Great questions (and a nice set up for our pitch I may add) that we love to anwer. As I have alluded in some other blogs, I come from the data marketing world, particularly taking data from the offline, mobile, email and online world – linking it at the individual level and using that data to reach audiences across devices on behalf of advertiser partners. The same data that I used in my past life is exactly how we’re moving forward with our best life (teheheh.)

There are two main components for managing compliance in online cannabis advertising

  1. Creative – aligning the creative messaging with local/state laws for cannabis (think Joe Camel)
  2. Audience Compliance – Validating that a certain percentage of your audience is 21+ and in market.

The creative piece is a process that many shops could manage, it’s understanding the law and ensuring that your creatives align with it. There is also a conversation that needs to be had with the publisher for the type of offers/creative they want on their site as they align with your respective brand safety guidelines.  

The major piece is data/audience delivery and being able to reach people whom we know are 21+. Most cannabis sites or adult natured sites will have a prompt asking users to confirm they are 21+. This type of user interference would hinder the experience on sites that don’t need this type of validation today, stopping them from moving forward with hosting cannabis ads to their adult traffic. Safe-Reach.com uses data, namely first party deterministic data to assuage these concerns and provide programmatic cannabis advertising to pubs across verticals.


Determni-wha? Essentially we partner with an identity resolution firm that takes data from the offline, online, email and mobile world and links all of these unique data points at the individual level. By linking these data points we can know who an individual is, where they live and their online identities (in a privacy-friendly manner.)

How this benefits our publisher partners is:

  1. We onboard our audience of 21+ users directly to our own DSP. These are people we can validate are 21+ and live in market.
  2. We only buy media against these devices and cookies when we see them on your site.
  3. What this means – we can validate who is receiving the media and their age for every cannabis friendly impression served on your site.

What this means for pubs? You can now open your supply to this premium advertising without fear of compliance concerns. Will programmatic cannabis be for everyone?.. No it will not. Will the use of deterministic data help open up considerable compliant supply for aggressively growing demand? We believe so.

Thanks for reading!

Adam Schlett