We asked respondents about their perceptions of marijuana (despite its legality) relative to alcohol. The answer gives us an early indication of how it may be positioned against the incumbent alcohol in the coming years.
A Healthy Alternative?
To uncover perceptions of health and not allow respondents any wiggle room – they had to choose whether:
- Marijuana is healthier than alcohol
- Alcohol is healthier than marijuana
Across 21+ age segments, 71% of consumers believe marijuana is healthier than alcohol.
By generation, we see that millennials are the most likely to believe marijuana is healthier, at 79%.
When we go deeper into the millennial segment, there aren’t stark differences between the 5-year cohorts.
However, it’s interesting that these numbers are higher than the percentage of those who believe it should be legalized.
Implications for Messaging
This implies that if marijuana were legal nationwide, it would have the leg up on health messaging. Though this is only a part of the equation on whether it will be a complement or substitute, it’s important.
It will be interesting to see how it plays out for gen-z , a generation growing up in an era of modern health-consciousness and a more lax culture surrounding marijuana.
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