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Kerri Accardi: the Birth of 420Media and the Launch of Cannected TV

Kerri Accardi: the Birth of 420Media and the Launch of Cannected TV

cannabis world news Kerri Accardo standing next to the Ken Kesey Further Bus

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From the East Coast to the West Coast, and soon after, the whole country, Kerri launched 420MEDIA from passion, grief, and the truth. 420MEDIA is a full-service marketing agency assisting brands with digital strategy development, content creation—including videos, photos, graphics, and animations—and advertising distribution. The agency utilizes various channels such as programmatic, CTV, billboards, digital, email, magazines, and social platforms, catering to both traditional and industry-specific outlets. “On December 10th, 2013, I left NYC with a mission to enlighten the world about cannabis after the loss of my Aunt Kathy less than two months earlier,” shared Kerri. I was fortunate to have a friend in the industry, so I went to Northern California and immersed myself in everything cannabis! I knew I had to learn more before I could help others understand the amazing benefits of cannabis.”

While on the road with 420MEDIA, covering cannabis policy, festivals, and people helping lead the fight to legalization, Kerri built a network of advocacy, support, and collaboration with various brands and voices. She speaks on brands doing amazing work in the industry that she has worked with:

“Early on, we worked with local brands in Washington State and Oregon like Alternative Remedies, MJ News Network, the awesome Seattle Hempfest, and Delta 9 dispensary. After moving into the paid media and television space, we worked with Humboldt Grace, Curved Papers, Age Vital, The Cannabis Nurses Network, and the MJBA on the first educational commercial to air on History, Discovery, and BRAVO channels in 2018 and then the Super Bowl in 2019!”

cannabis world news Kerri and her Aunt Kathy
Kerri and her Aunt Kathy.

Please provide a little backstory on 420MEDIA and the launch.

“After losing my aunt, I was devastated and angry. I knew too much about cannabis to turn back but not enough to move forward, so I went to stay with a friend who owned a collective in San Jose, California, to learn. On my first night, I was in a political council meeting, and the next day, I was up at the crack of dawn learning how to grow. Over the next few weeks, I was able to learn a lot by talking directly with patients, pioneers, doctors, attorneys, and the legacy community and spending time at my friend’s dispensary. In January 2014, New York Quasi -legalized medical cannabis, and I called a former colleague to tell him I was going to start a production company (at the time) to showcase cannabis as the miracle she is. That was the start of 420MEDIA.”

cannabis world news Kerri brings aunt Kathy to Seattle Hempfest Main Stage
Kerri brings her Aunt Kathy to the Seattle Hempfest Main Stage.

What are some of the milestones and wins reached by 420MEDIA?

2014, we filmed the first legal cannabis tour in Washington State.

2015/16, we were an Agency of Record with CBS for cannabis content.

2018, we aired the first cannabis commercial during Primetime on History, BRAVO, and Discovery channels.

In 2019, we aired during the Super Bowl in the USVI and Puerto Rico and created and produced the first educational conference in St. Croix with the Commissioner of Agriculture.

2021, we launched our streaming TV channel Cannected TV across ROKU, Apple TV and IOS ( globally) Android TV, Amazon Fire, Google Play devices, and Online 4/20, and premiered our first long-form series hosted by Super Bowl champion Marvin Washington called the “5th Quarter” an exploration of cannabis and athletes.

2022, we expanded the channel to LG, Sony, Panasonic, Phillips, Sharp, and TCL Smart TVs! We added more content and a women’s section with 50 women’s stories currently streaming.

2023 420MEDIA did some filming, added more media partners and outlets for brands to reach their target audience, and did lots of R&D.

Cannected TV added more content and a new event series called “High Stakes” that gives viewers a look into the cannabis space- MJ Unpacked, The Clios, and Emerald Cup Awards so far. We have a few upcoming shoots before MJ Biz Con.

We will start holiday campaigns and stream the “High Holidaze” series with Sativa Santa in December.

Currently and throughout 2024, we’re adding a digital marketplace similar to QVC for products and services to have a 24/7 digital distribution across television, mobile, and web devices.”

cannabis world news Kerri Accardi in shirt that says Marijuana is safer than alcohol
Kerri, rocking her Safer shirt.

What are some things that 420 MEDIA has accomplished that people may have missed?

A lot lol. 🙂 Top 4

Probably that we aired our commercial during Primetime on History, Bravo, and Discovery channels in California in 2018, then again in 2019 during the Super Bowl in the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. We have brought brands to Times Square and Las Vegas billboards, mainstream digital outlets, programmatic, and TV and we have ten years of professionally filmed content since 2014 documenting the growth of the cannabis industry with over 500 people sharing their stories – from patients to former prisoners, pioneers, veterans, and more.

We’re launching VuenQ for brands to showcase their products on TV. I brought in someone who helped build celebrity brands like Martha Stewart and QVC.

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cannabis world news media crew
The 420Media crew in action.

Tell me about Cannected TV; who should be watching, who viewers can expect to see, and what type of shows can viewers expect to see?

“Everyone and anyone interested in cannabis should download, subscribe, and watch Cannected TV! Viewers can expect to see the narrative of cannabis and how we got here, as well as original and partner content. There are 50 women’s stories under 5 minutes, each currently streaming alongside a series called the “5th Quarter” hosted by Super Bowl champion Marvin Washington that delves into athletes and cannabis. We have a lot of educational shorts, animation, and interviews on the channel now. This April, we will soft launch the virtual marketplace to take brands to TV and provide viewers access to products and services right before the 4/20 holiday season using video messaging with QR codes to drive the next steps. It will be beneficial to both B2B and B2C businesses. It’s like taking vendor booths into people’s living rooms – another step toward breaking the stigma.

cannabis world news group of people in hospital room with Kerri's Aunt Kathy, including Paul Simon
Visiting Aunt Kathy in the hospital with Kerri and Paul Simon.

Tell me about plans that 420MEDIA and Cannected TV have for expansion as legalization continues to take the nation by storm.

“420MEDIA is going to start to focus strictly as an agency for advertising while partnering with other agencies to provide white label services so they utilize our production partners and can tap into the vast distribution outlets we’ve amassed through the years.

Connected TV is adding a music section and expanding into psychedelics, growing, cooking, comedy, news, political content, and essentially virtual window shopping. As legalization expands, the knowledge needs to be there to support new consumers and patients so they can make informed decisions about their lives and health.

On a personal note, I don’t want anyone to watch their family or friends suffer or die needlessly when cannabis can most likely help. While my Aunt Kathy was still alive, I made her a promise I would do everything in my power to educate others so they didn’t have to suffer and die like I was witnessing. I feel like I kept my promise and am grateful to be in this position to serve others on a global scale.”

All photos courtesy of Kerri Accardi and 420Media

 

 

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