Cannabis Companies Can Succeed On Twitter: What You Need to Know

Posted by Refined Bud on April 13, 2016 in blog

Last month, Twitter turned ten. That’s almost ancient in tech startups and the social media world. But Twitter is far from over. Since we’ve lived through a decade of #hashtags and tweets limited to 140 characters, it’s safe to say that Twitter changed the way the world interacts online. From trending topics an official segment on news programs to the insane advertising campaigns actively using hashtags to promote online engagement, consumable media, current events, and general existence has trended and started a conversation on Twitter.

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That little blue bird has changed the way people communicate but more importantly, changed the way marketers think and present their ideas. Now, marketers can hear directly from the people and respond instantly via the social network. Something that is sometimes considered a blessing and a curse for marketing professionals.

With difficulty reaching mainstream audiences through traditional advertising mediums, the cannabis industry seeks most of its influence online. Cannabis brands are flocking to social media channels like Twitter, but doing so may also require brands to jump through a variety of obstacles to sustaining a strong social media presence.

cannabis digital marketing twitter

Since the cannabis has been legalization for recreational use in 4 states and the District of Columbia and medical use in 23 states, social networks have been struggling to balance the needs of cannabis brands on their sites. Facebook and Instagram have been firm on their policies on not allowing drug or “illegal” (by illegal, we mean at the federal level) content on their platforms. They even go as far as removing cannabis branded social pages stating they violate the terms of use. Many cannabis brands, including Dixie Elixirs, have had their accounts deleted after hundreds of thousands of followers have been acquired. Social Media giants are erasing hundreds of hours of work for a business that is operating in a state that has legalized cannabis in recreational or medical form. That’s not to give up hope that your brand cannot succeed online. You can; you just need to understand four ways that cannabis brands can thrive on Twitter.

Age-restrict your page
One way to show you’re operating a legitimate business and following state laws is to limit content to those who are age appropriate. You can do this by setting an Age Verification System where followers will have to enter their age or connect their social media page to be able to view and share your content. Many alcohol brands take this precaution and require individuals to confirm their age.

Although this is not a requirement on Twitter, it is one simple way to avoid your account from being shut down. On Twitter, adjust your settings and it will quickly send a message to your potential follower to verify their age.

Promote quality content
When constructing your tweet, a good rule of thumb is to consider: “Does this represent our brand well?” Unfortunately, too many brands and brand ambassadors have learned the hard way that what you say online can backfire, so carefully and strategically craft your content to reflect honestly and authentically your cannabis brand.

Choosing to post quality content that engages and educates your followers rather than being blatantly promotional is the best practice. Trust us; your audience does not want to see ad after ad after ad on your social media account, just like nobody wants to read tweets solely written in hashtags. The art of balancing is a very fine line, and genuine engagement on social media will build brand awareness and showcase your brand in the best light possible.

Also, building an organic following by posting quality tweets will create an honest online presence and will represent your brand well. Forbes writes, “How you build a following matters. If you consistently post quality content that makes people think, laugh, smile, or share with their friends, people are going to follow you.” Additionally, Nieman Lab reports that the key to success on Twitter, and social media, in general, is to know what your audience finds interesting and then create content that fits their interests.

In the cannabis industry, promoting quality content on Twitter can mean any a variety of approaches on an abundance of issues. Cannabis connects the areas of politics, public health, wellness, science, education, economics, and business, and your content should reflect these items if they are relevant to your brand. Compelling content will elevate and appeal to your audience and will position your brand as professional and knowledgeable in the cannabis industry.

Avoid stereotypes
As cannabis industry professionals we have a responsibility to educate the larger public on cannabis use and the stigma associated with this plant. When we imply that cannabis consumption only applies by using worn out stereotypes like stoner and pothead, we are preventing the industry and the plant from being taken seriously.

Marc Shepard, the co-founder of the New England Cannabis Conventions wrote, “The most successful MMJ (medical marijuana) companies I’ve seen never forget that that their product is medicine, and their customers are patients.”

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Follow best practices
Last but certainly not least, a general guideline for success on social media is to follow the platform’s best practices. There are a whole set of guidelines to make sure the content your brand posts on Twitter makes sense to the Twitterverse. Not all messages are equal across every platform or audience, so familiarizing yourself with the basics. Learning the etiquette for #hashtag use, language, graphics and more will create a professional and clean image that will present your brand in the best manner.

Follow these tips on Twitter to make sure your cannabis brand is professional, unique and position your company’s image in the industry in the best way possible. At Refined Bud, we can help your succeed on Twitter — not just by teaching you the basics, but at every level. Whether that be developing content, driving strategy, or understanding your brand’s follower engagement. Connect with us today, you’ll be glad you did.

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