The traditional start in an exceptional advertising agency set in motion a series of events that set Tom Daley quietly shaping not one but two industries, in the process affecting millions of businesses and billions of people on a global basis. In his role as Everscore’s chief marketing officer, he’s working to add cannabis to the list of industries he’s helping build.
As a digital marketing leader with more than two decades of experience across a variety of industries (UPS, ING, Coca-Cola), he has harnessed emerging technology to create brand value by positively impacting experiences, facilitating more efficient value exchanges and driving Deep sharing. .
We spoke with Tom for our Senior Call series, where we talk with leaders in the cannabis field.
Tom, tell us…
Where did you grow up and where do you live now.
I was born in Manhattan, but grew up in Brooklyn and the surrounding suburbs of New York and Connecticut, where I graduated from high school. I started my career in Manhattan, moved to DC for two years, and now live in Atlanta, where I have lived for over 25 years.
Your current role in the cannabis industry, and where you live.
I am currently the Marketing Director of Everscore. In this role, I work to connect millions of curious consumers with innovative cannabis brands. Marketing at Everscore is all about building brand love, creating experiences that inspire consumers and implementing the most efficient and effective conversion capability in the industry. I’m based in Atlanta and plan to move to Everscore’s corporate headquarters in Boulder, Colorado, once my youngest high school graduate graduates in May.
A story about the positive impact of cannabis on your life.
I’ve been with Everscore for a little over a year now, so obviously I’m not the first to join this movement. But that short period of time forced me to wake up and think about a host of social issues of which I was familiar, but not very familiar. I am grateful to those – including, of course, the team at Everscore – for helping me evolve from awareness of that arm into a practical opportunity to contribute to the well-being of the individual and society.
A flower, edible, favorite product or brand.
As the person leading the marketing effort for a market that connects consumers to a wealth of different cannabis brands, I dare not claim a favourite! However, I’m really impressed with the work that TJ Stouder, a former P&G marketer, is doing with his MyHi brand out of California. It sets the standard for innovation for the cannabis industry with MyHi Stir Sticks, a simple, convenient and discreet way to elevate any beverage. TJ has an unparalleled commitment to consistency and quality in its products with a focus on the beverage industry, which has tremendous growth potential.
The biggest challenge that cannabis marketers face today.
It’s tempting to answer this question from a “business” perspective, but let’s start with the consumer. If you follow their journey, the challenges will reveal themselves starting with the simple basic question of access. Can I buy cannabis? The following challenges center around providing consumers with choice, convenience, and confidence. The current model actually provides limited options, with inconvenient buying options and too many reasons why consumers are unsure of what they are consuming. As an industry, we need to do a better job.
One thing you’re excited about right now is cannabis brands, partnerships, or marketing.
The creative destruction of decades of plant demonization is exciting. Any business, partnership or marketing is an attempt to unlock a $100 billion future. Each swing of the hammer weakens the rock until it eventually collapses. (This is a metaphor. I have nothing against rocks.) In this sense, it does not matter if any one program is successful and it is not about now. Short-term gains for small numbers of people are very boring.
Cannabis Trade Organization/Social Justice Supported.
This answer is self-serving because we at Everscore are co-founders of the Native American Hemp Alliance. Through NACA, we help revitalize indigenous farmers to create the world’s largest source of cannabis cultivation. Simply put, the purpose of NACA is to ensure that there is a fair, sustainable, and direct path between the Native Americans and the cannabis industry.
A recent project to be proud of.
It’s too early to feel “proud”, but forming NACA is something I consider an achievement. This initiative begins with indigenous farmers across multiple states. The growers represent approximately 500,000 acres of land that could be devoted to the cultivation of hemp. Compare that to a total of less than 800 acres for the top 20 “under glass” brands. In addition to agriculture, NACA has the potential to set up a campus for education and additional cannabis processing services. This might be a routine for some, but it was a new world to me.
Someone else’s project you liked recently.
Inspiration can certainly be found from within the industry. However, I would like to import a project from abroad: Wholechain, from a company called (En) Visible. Wholechain is a blockchain-based tracking solution designed to enable trust, coordination, and transparency in fragmented supply chains. It has been named for winning the “Low or No Cost Food Tracking Challenge.” Its technology has been used to help small farmers tell their stories while also bringing transparency into supply chains. Hemp’s Certificate of Authenticity doesn’t come close to providing growers or consumers with the information they need. Our industry needs solutions like this to answer the simple questions people ask about the products we want them to consume.
Someone you love on the lawn does great things.
Personally, it is not interesting or useful to define “someone”. If the industry wants people to like it, look to First Nations and Indigenous farmers who are finding ways to use their traditions and skills in growing hemp. It goes without saying that there is nothing more important to the industry than the factory itself. When you witness their respect for the plant, where it comes from and everything it represents, admiration is just one of the many feelings you will feel.
What would you do if you weren’t in the cannabis industry?
My thing is to “flip big ships in small spaces.” It has helped very big brands (UPS, ING, Coca-Cola) navigate the currents to unlock opportunities before they become obvious, or at least before they become routine and widely accepted. Know where the rocks are and how to avoid them. I’ve done this for over 25 years. I do that today. I’ll do it tomorrow wherever there are new worlds to explore.
High Calling is a weekly series, published on Thursdays, where we talk to people in the cannabis industry about their personal history and taste in cannabis and the future of cannabis marketing. For more information on Higher Connectivity and our Clio Cannabis Program, please contact.