Andrea Burnett, 4twenty Group said:
“We believe that women will be the driving force for cannabis wellness and changing the way people view marijuana.”
Describe yourself and what you do.
I’m a 25-year veteran of the lifestyle PR and marketing industry and a huge proponent of helping women-owned businesses. I’m always looking for creative new ways to amplify my clients’ brands, craft outside-the-box campaign strategies and act as an über connector between my clients and the media.
What is your cannabis business origin story?
After the (November 2016) election, I felt a bit anxious about the state of the economy and sad about where we might be headed as a country. I was driving on the very congested I-80 in Oakland when a fascinating segment came on NPR’s Marketplace. Kai Ryssdal was reporting from the Las Vegas cannabis expo, and a bell went off! I realized that this was a community that I wanted to be a part of, a movement that I felt I had something to contribute to.
Cannabis helps so many people in so many amazing ways, and I wanted to be a part of removing the stigma. Like you and many others, we believe that women will be the driving force for cannabis wellness and changing the way people view marijuana. Our core competency is promoting women-centric products and services, so we want to empower women in the cannabis community and help them grow their brands and be successful entrepreneurs.
Our hope is that the 4twenty Group will be the go-to agency for women-run businesses and women-centric products. We want to connect likeminded women in this space and help their stories be heard.
What is your personal cannabis origin story?
I mentioned earlier that the election was a huge motivator for me to launch the 4twenty Group, in addition, I am a mom, and a business owner, and like millions of women, I suffer from insomnia and occasional stress. Cannabis, specifically edibles, have really changed my life in such a positive way.
What is your Superpower?
Many people call me a matchmaker. I love bringing people together and fostering new relationships. I love to build bridges in a genuine way. If there was a red cape with a large “M” for matchmaker on it, I would be proud to wear it!
What has been your greatest obstacle in this industry or with your business to date?
A publicist is fiercely persistent. And a good publicist is incredibly creative and will go to great lengths to build relationships on behalf of her clients. Our greatest obstacle can be silence from the press. We hear the word “no” a million times a day, but it never gets us down. We just move on to the next challenge!
What is your vision for women in this industry?
To see more and more women be a part of it for all the right reasons!
It’s such an exciting time to be a part of this industry. Learn as much as you can. Read EVERYTHING, know the market, connect with others in the business, and participate in as many cannabis events and business and social gatherings as you can.
One of the best moves I ever made was finding a mentor early on. I work with a former VC and entrepreneur who grounds me and motivates me. Find someone to be your champion—it’s a tremendous help. I have found that Gateway Works in Oakland has also been a real asset to me and many others like me. It has mentors of all backgrounds who are incredibly generous with their wisdom and experience.
Connect with Andrea