In February 2021, Mekky began representing PharmaCann, one of the USA’s largest, privately-held, and vertically integrated cannabis companies and its Verilife dispensaries, as its first external PR agency.
Mekky conducted a thorough media audit to understand how media outlets and specific media markets were speaking about cannabis. By working closely with PharmaCann’s legal team and state representatives for the dispensaries, Mekky was able to craft state-specific messaging to adhere to cannabis compliance and cultural acceptance of cannabis before any media outreach began.
Mekky Media kicked off the partnership with the philanthropic announcement of a $600,000 grant that PharmaCann presented to a Chicagoland community college to build the first community college cultivation lab in the state of Illinois.
Mekky Media helped kickstart a celebrity engagement campaign, partnering with Major League Baseball hall-of-famer and Chicago celebrity, Ryne Sandberg. Through marketing campaigns throughout the state of Illinois, community events tied to Verilife openings over the summer and targeted media interviews, Ryne Sandberg helped drive traffic to new and existing locations and bring a new type of messaging towards those who may be interested in trying cannabis for the first time. Mekky Media secured top local and national coverage surrounding the partnership, ultimately driving awareness to the PharmaCann brand and Verilife dispensaries, and further driving the mission of cannabis bettering people’s lives.
The team also worked with PharmaCann to promote the grand opening of five dispensaries in key cities of Illinois and Pennsylvania. Through individual press releases, media alerts and strategic pitching, Mekky Media successfully secured press that drove traffic to grand opening events and awareness around the dispensaries, positioning Verilife as a leading dispensary choice in those communities.
Notable placements include:
FOX32, ABC7, NBC25, WGN-TV, Daily Herald, Crain’s Chicago Business, Chicago Tribune, The Galena Gazette, Patch, Telegraph Herald, Williamsport Sun-Gazette and more.