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Cannabis And Instagram 31 Cannabis And Instagram Guide

Cannabis And Instagram Guide

It’s no great secret that Americans spend a ton of time each day on social media apps. And social media can be a huge marketing asset for dispensary owners. Reaching your current clientele and potential customers through apps that they’re already using is a great way to expand sales, and make your dispensary stand out.

While social media can be an excellent way to market your retail cannabis business, there are several things you need to be aware of before getting started. Many popular pages with thousands of followers have been shadowbanned due to complicated regulations on the type of content that is allowed to be posted. In this guide, we will go over everything you need to know about social media and cannabis retail marketing.

Have a Marketing Strategy Before You Start Posting

Before creating any content, determine who your target audience is. market research will allow you to focus on a specific group of people, and this should be part of your dispensary’s business plan. Keep this information in mind when posting content so that it appeals to your desired demographic.

When creating posts, think about which customer types would be most interested in them. It can never hurt to mix up your post content and format from time to time, just make sure that they’re always tailored towards a specific type of clientele that you want coming into your store.

Why Do Dispensaries Get Banned?

The reasons for cannabis-based Instagram bans differ, but in a majority of cases, it’s because the dispensaries themselves didn’t know the rules and posted banned content.

At other times, it’s not even their fault. For example, hostile dispensaries have been known to target their competition by repeatedly and maliciously reporting them for violating social media platforms terms of use. This can lead to unnecessary shadowbans that are often unjustified.

If your business gets banned or blocked, it will be very hard to fix the situation. To avoid this problem, take care to prevent bans by following these common rules for cannabis social media marketing:

Stay Away From Appearing To Encourage Sales

You should avoid paid advertisements, as dispensaries are not allowed to promote commerce of controlled substances on social media apps. Additionally, stay away from using any dollar signs on your pages, as this can trigger monitors (both AI and human) to flag your page for encourage sales.

No Cannabis Hashtags

Don’t use hashtags that are related to marijuana. This will likely result in trouble, as most social media platforms consider searchable cannabis terms as advertisements for controlled substances to underage audiences.

Avoid Photos Of Consumption

Posting pictures of people consuming marijuana is a definite no-no. Even if your budtenders look super cool while smoking a hash and goo pre-roll, it’s not worth the risk of being flagged for inappropriate content. Sure, pop stars might be able to get away with posting blunts all over their social media accounts, but they’re probably not using those same accounts to promote their cannabis business.

Don’t Teach People How To Grow

Don’t post pictures or videos of you growing cannabis on your retail company’s social media platforms. You can use these channels to showcase other types of content like educational posts and informative articles instead – which we will go over later.

Cannabis And Instagram 32 Cannabis And Instagram Guide

Which Is The Best Platform To Use For Retail Cannabis Businesses?

To expand the reach of your retail cannabis business, use one or more of these social media platforms in addition to Instagram:

  • TikTok
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Instagram

Cannabis and TikTok

Although you can’t use certain hashtags to directly advertise your page, there are indirect methods that could still be effective. For example, TikTok users generally prefer shorter videos consisting of trending and entertaining content that is easy to consume. Additionally, many people on TikTok enjoy syncing their videos up with popular songs.

By asking your team to post videos with the #budtender hashtag, you’re adding personality and humanizing your dispensary. This will enable you to create a stronger presence by attracting followers who want to get to know more about your business. Focus less on products, and more on people and experiences.

Cannabis and LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a social media platform that allows cannabis retail entrepreneurs to connect with others in the same field, but who might specialize in different areas. By Knowing your dispensary’s location, purpose, and key topics can help you make valuable connections with other marijuana brands.

LinkedIn connections have the potential to turn into professional relationships with well-known industry experts or even business partnerships. In addition, LinkedIn can help make you and your work more visible within your industry, as well as expand yournetwork of contacts.

Cannabis and Twitter

One of the most weed-friendly social media platforms for marketing purposes is Twitter. You can post a variety of content, from brand partnerships and new products to news about marijuana legislation and social equity.

Some dispensaries are so daring as to take their Twitter followers and funnel them straight into their online sales. Medmen, for instance, posted an image of a cannabis bud on their Twitter last week with the intent of driving Californians to their eCommerce menus.

Even though some dispensaries only use Twitter occasionally because of how fleeting the content is and that it’s mostly text-based, it’s still a good idea to have a Twitter account so you can reach your customers if you do get locked out of other social media accounts. Some cannabis retail pages with over 25K followers on Twitter prefer to keep their promoted posts focused on Instagram, but tweeting occasionally is still worth it.

Cannabis and Facebook 

Although dispensaries post similar content on their Facebook page as they would on other social media platforms, cannabis retail businesses don’t seem to gain as much attention from Facebook users.

Although Facebook isn’t the ideal place to post extensive information about your dispensary, you can still use it to verify certain aspects of your website, offer basic business info, or check out product reviews. By creating a mini version of your website on Facebook, you’ll be able to provide potential customers with enough information to get an idea of how your dispensary operates without running afoul of their rules.

Recent articles regarding Facebook’s rules give the impression that it is a violation to post contact information or hours of operation on business pages. However, many dispensaries’ profiles include this type of information and more. It seems that since the major crackdowns on cannabis-related Facebook profiles in 2016 and 2017, Zuckerburg and his team have become less strict with banning and blocking pages.

Cannabis and Instagram 

For dispensaries and other retail companies, Instagram is the best social media platform to use for marketing purposes. It allows you to show your followers what’s going on and engage with them on a platform that they’re likely using every day. Plus, it’s easy for them to share information socially. The main purpose of having a popular Instagram account is to get customers to visit your eCommerce page or menu website naturally.

Mix Up The Content

Although it may seem counterintuitive, pictures of marijuana plants on your website can actually be advantageous. This is because they help show your customers what brands and cultivators you work with, which in turn helps create a unique identity for your dispensary. Additionally, collaborating with posts from other partners will also assist in spreading information about your dispensary to potential consumers.

In addition to posts about your promotions, also make sure to mix in other interesting types of content on your page. For example, you could upload a video or series of photos showing how live resin is made. Or, even better, you could write posts destigmatizing cannabis use, or create infographics about decarceration. Meta’s algorithm rewards pages that offer educational content – so not only will you be providing helpful information to those who visit your site, but you’ll also improve your ranking on search engines!

It is essential to be aware that social media posts must correspond with current trends and events. This means basing content around holidays, seasons, and any other significant cultural moments. An example of this would be offering discounts on 4/20 or promoting LGBTQ owned businesses during pride month.

Mitigate Your Chances of Getting Banned

If you want to increase your followers on Instagram without being penalized, follow these steps that signal you are adhering to the platform’s Guidelines for Cannabis-Related Pages.

Some tips to stay within the parameters set by the monitors include adding “Nothing For Sale” or “No Sales” in your profile, as well as writing or adding a prompt that says “21 To View” or “21+”.

Keep Up to Date With Rules And Trends

Social media platforms are changing their rules and guidelines frequently, so it’s crucial to stay updated on the current laws. Just like any other part of running a business, you always need to be monitoring regulatory news in your industry. If you see that similar posts from other businesses are getting punished, take a new approach or delete older posts which may cross a line.

Utilize Analytics 

If you want to see how your business’ social media platform is performing, make use of the analytics feature on the account. This will provide key insights into who your target audience is and what they’re interested in. With this information, you can then adapt or change your marketing strategy accordingly. Segmentation and targeted advertising are two powerful aspects of digital marketing, so make sure you’re taking full advantage of them!

Consider Hiring Consultants

If you’re stuck on how to produce or fill your content, perhaps it’s time to think about Social Media Consulting. Hiring an expert in the cannabis field is a safe way get started, and there are many agencies like Cannabis Creative that offer digital marketing strategies. If you want something more simple- like highlighting dispensary products and locations through high quality photos- then Dope Creative would be a great option for you. There are plenty of experts who can help elevate your social media platforms!

Reach Out To Followers!

Engage with your potential customers by replying to comments on your posts. You can further build relationships by posting user-generated content.not only will this help establish your brand, but you’ll likely see an uptick in conversions as well.

If you want to get future customers interested in your store, a great strategy is finding other cannabis-retail businesses that are similar to yours and request to follow the users who are already following or liking their page. This way, you can start building a relationship with that user where they may then follow you back and be more likely to visit your store instead of your competitor’s.

The Future of Social Media And Cannabis

As cannabis becomes more legal and the stigma around it decreases, social media networks will likely have fewer restrictions on marijuana content. This winter, Amazon and Apple lobbied for commercial reform in cannabis as the retail technology space expands.

Weed Centric Social Media Apps

Some cannabis entrepreneurs are trying to create their own social media apps in order to avoid being blocked. Berner, the rapper and founder of Cookies cannabis brand, launched a marijuana social network called Social Club; however, he has found other challenges impeding his progress.

Utilizing weed menu apps such as Weedmaps, and keeping your profile up-to-date on Google is just as important as marketing on social media–if not more. In fact, these apps are likely to add more social elements in the upcoming future.

Dispensary POS 

KORONA POS offers a fully connected cannabis dispensary website platform that can help drive traffic to your eCommerce platform and brick and mortar stores. By displaying what products you have in stock, customers will be able to easily find what they’re looking for – whether they’re shopping online or in-store.

Our company offers the quickest, most dependable, and budget-friendly point of sale system for brick and mortar businesses on the market. Our software is integration ready, helping you utilize cannabis technology like Dutchie, Leafly, and Springbig. Keep your store front running efficiently while staying informed about all sales and customer metrics that are vital to optimizing your dispensary. Give us a call today to learn more about our KORONA POS System for dispensaries.

Frequently Asked Questions About Social Media And Cannabis Retail Marketing

How do you promote a dispensary?

If you want to great an Instagram account for your cannabis retail business that will show off what your store is all about and what products you carry, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Make sure that it’s clear nothing is for sale through your page, and try to vary up the content you post by including helpful educational information, fun stories featuring staff members, and targeted product partnerships based on customer niche.

Can dispensaries have Instagram?

Yes, plenty of dispensaries have found success using Instagram to show off their personality and inventory. Cannabis retail businesses can also use LinkedIn, TikTok, Facebook, and more to help generate interest and awareness about their brand.

Can dispensaries advertise on Instagram?

Unfortunately, you cannot advertise cannabis products on Instagram due to their terms of use. However, you can still show your followers what types of products you have in stock and highlight what makes your dispensary unique. By being creative and posting diverse content, you can drive potential customers to your eCommerce and brick-and-mortar locations.

Can I post edibles on Instagram?

Although you can post pictures of marijuana products and edibles on Instagram, it’s best to avoid posting images of people consuming cannabis. Additionally, don’t include the prices of any edibles, tinctures, or other weed items in your posts.

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