Let’s be honest. The most common method of modern advertising is digital. Social media marketing is huge, and not just for our industry.
In fact, it’s far easier for any other legal business worldwide to have a successful social media presence than for cannabis businesses. The plant’s varying legal status worldwide makes it tricky for platforms to pin down what’s allowed vs. what’s not.
These platforms, like Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok, are notorious for prohibiting and limiting cannabis content and advertisements. This takes a major toll on our industry’s ability to showcase products, provide educational resources, and stop the stigma.
Before we dive into how to get—and keep—your cannabis business on social media, it’s worth noting that a solid cannabis marketing strategy will do you wonders. Partnering with a team of marketing experts can do wonders for your brand, and it’s always nice to have a reliable group to fall back on for advice.
Let’s get started. Here’s how to get your cannabis brand on social media.
Anyone can make a social media account. But only few know how to get noticed, liked, and shared. That process starts with establishing a brand identity.
If you already have a website with a solid company background, mission statement, and “About Us” page,” you’re one step ahead of most brands. Consumers like unique brands with their own reason for being in the cannabis industry.
The more different you are, the more likely you will attract consumers. Once you’ve established your brand identity, only then can you stand out on social media and post content that’s relevant to your brand. Your values should reflect in your marketing materials, and that includes regular, consistent, and quality postings on social media.
Does your brand target the modern consumer who enjoys state-of-the-art cannabis technology, or are you a wellness brand looking to make good days great?
Whatever your answer is, posting content that’s on-brand and reflects your beliefs, goals, and values is essential. You want your posts to flow seamlessly, with similar aesthetics, vibes, color schemes, fonts, and anything else that your brand has established.
The key takeaway here is that you want your social media pages to represent your brand wholly and accurately. When a future consumer stumbles on your page, you should have quality content to grab their attention and consistent postings that let them learn more about your brand, product, service, values, etc.
The two above tips are great advice for any brand in any industry. However, when cannabis enters the picture, we have some serious hurdles to jump.
As mentioned, social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok are notorious for their harsh restrictions regarding cannabis content.
Knowing what you can and can’t post can be tricky, so having an expert marketing team will save you from future headaches and ensure you’re compliant with all regulations.
See our tips below on how to keep your cannabis brand on social media.
Every social media platform will have its set of rules or community guidelines. If you want your cannabis brand to stay afloat on socials, you must be compliant with these guidelines.
For example, Instagram notes that “buying or selling non-medical or pharmaceutical drugs” is prohibited. It also bans the attempt to “trade, coordinate the trade of, donate, gift, or ask for non-medical drugs, as well as content that either admits to personal use (unless in the recovery context) or coordinates or promotes the use of non-medical drugs.”
Reading that is like a jab to the heart. How on earth can you get your brand to not only stay on social media, but thrive? Well, remember what I said about brand identity? This will be the key to helping your brand run engaging and popular social media pages.
The best way to avoid cannabis marketing hiccups on social media is to center your page around your brand rather than your products. Showcasing the mission and values of your brand will help consumers form a relationship with you and hopefully follow you for consistent posts like the ones that attracted them in the first place.
This gives you complete creative control to make a social media page that perfectly reflects your brand. Explain what your brand promises and how you put that into action. Give consumers a look at the behind-the-scenes process of your brand’s day-to-day; maybe that’s getting a new shipment or taking a tour of your headquarters.
The consequences of breaking a social media platform’s community guidelines are harsh. You could get flagged, shadowbanned, temporarily suspended, or have your account deleted completely.
It’s worth noting that a platform’s choice of which accounts to flag and deactivate is not consistent. One brand’s page could get deleted for something your page has been doing for weeks. The inconsistency is real, and in order to avoid it, don’t make posts about the following:
Furthermore, with most platforms, you can’t even mention the words cannabis, marijuana, or weed without getting flagged. It really seems like outside sources want our industry to fail, but it’s time to show ’em who’s boss. Wiggling around social media community guidelines can be tough but not impossible, whether you have a marketing team or not.
That’s why we suggest forming your pages around your brand rather than your products. Not only is it a great way to get the word out about your brand, but it will keep you compliant without worrying about potential consequences.