Retail cannabis is a serious business. This $55 billion industry is potentially bigger than video games, firearms, and even McDonald’s and Netflix.

Despite cannabis stocks making millionaires like the Wolf of Weed Street, the industry still carries a stigma among some circles. Thanks to cult icons like Cheech & Chong and Reefer Madness, hippie potheads with tacky accessories flood the market.

Serious cannabis investing means looking past the corny stereotypes to real companies with branding that steers away from these old, tired images. MedMen (MMNFF), for example, focuses on premium, luxury, sleek, and sexy cannabis-infused products. GW Pharma (GWPH), on the other hand, is all about the healing effects of marijuana’s components.

So what are the most effective methods used in marijuana investing circles to dispel the stoner dropout myth? Let’s take a look at what some of the biggest marijuana stocks are doing.


Becoming Subject Matter Experts

The most effective weapon against the pothead stereotype is knowledge. A knowledgeable staff that fully understands everything about the product and brand is indispensable, as we see with GW Pharma – and the company is not the only one.Charlotte’s Web (CWEB) educated the entire cannabis market in CBD and its benefits. The strain is named after a then-11-year-old girl whose family used CBD to treat her epilepsy. Because THC is the psychoactive compound in cannabis, this focus on childsafe medicinal benefits made both the Charlotte’s Web strain and company a star in marijuana investing.

Charlotte’s Web is possibly doing more to remove the stigma around cannabis more than any other public company.

Knowledge doesn’t need to be this serious either. 1933 Industries (formerly Friday Night Inc.) (TGIF) enjoys exposure along the entire Nevada cannabis supply chain. Because the company is competing in Las Vegas, showmanship counts – but Friday Night doesn’t entertain at the expense of quality information. TGIF has long been involved in cannabis legislation and documents this history.


Forging Successful Partnerships

There’s no need to face cannabis investing or the industry alone. Many marijuana stocks earned success through their partnerships. Just take a look at Tinley (TNY) – the company partnered with former alcohol industry executives to forge its path through the alcohol industry, a prime market opportunity.

Canopy Growth Corp (CGC) tackled the issue head-on by partnering with iconic cannabis celebrity Snoop Dogg. The move gave both brands exposure to more serious cannabis investing opportunities and turned them into forces to be reckoned with in this ever-expanding industry.

Cannabis isn’t the taboo subject it once was, but it still holds a stigma. Companies like these are pioneers in the industry, helping to change the national conversation. Cannabis is no longer about potheads smoking weed to get high. Educated professionals use medical marijuana to relieve ailments, and it’s no different than a glass of wine with dinner.