1. suspicion
2. a suspect
3. suspicious

My colleague and I were finalizing some paperwork to cut a check to a new vendor.  While discussing the details, Sonya says to me “I don’t know, this company seems a bit sus to me, their website looks different from the quote they sent over.  The logo doesn’t match and her contact information isn’t listed anywhere.  None of the branding is the same.”  I told her if she didn’t feel comfortable dealing with them we would go back to the drawing board and find a more reputable place.

But this brings up an interesting point.  We like to think of branding as a calling card, a promise of what clients can expect.  But it’s more than that.  It’s the face of your organization, the message to a prospective client that you’re a legitimate company worthy of their time and money.

Sus is practically synonymous with marijuana in certain circles. Cannabis has an image problem and if we are going to collectively change the face of the industry, sus is the last thing we need.  The images of the layabout pothead, the dreadlocked skater or the tattooed rapper plague the industry and have created a narrative that impedes the important progress we need to make to establish cannabis as a viable alternative both recreationally and medicinally.

To be a player in the industry, you must put branding and marketing at the forefront and not relegate it to an afterthought. Marketing is an investment.  In this day and age, visual branding isn’t a luxury it’s a necessity and it will mean the difference between sinking or swimming.  Let’s change the narrative.  Right now, the hurdles are high on a constantly moving playing field.  It’s time for cannabis to come out of the shadows and take its rightful place in the sun but it will take all of us to affect that change.

What do customers see when they look at your company? Is it sus?

Monica Jones
President, Bud Branding

Bud Branding helps businesses grow their influence and their brands. As a boutique brand management agency specializing in the cannabis industry, we begin with a thorough analysis of your needs and partner with you to develop and execute a marketing plan that will help you take your business to the next level. To learn more about how Bud Branding can help you, visit us at or call 212-491-7318.