Social media is a powerful tool for engaging both existing and potential customers for your marijuana dispensary, with photo-based platforms like Instagram and Snapchat having an increasing importance in the marketing efforts of dispensaries across the country.
As with any social media platform, the way you engage with your customers and the content you curate can either make or break your marketing. With this in mind, we have pulled together a list of best practices to help cannabis dispensary owners curate their Instagram accounts to interest their customer, engage potential audiences, and most importantly, keep a professional image to provide the legal marijuana industry the legitimacy it deserves.
Here are a few tips for your dispensary’s Instagram account:
Keep It Professional. As dispensary owners, you have likely had to fight against a lot of stigma when it comes to the culture within a dispensary, with many people associating dispensaries where recreational marijuana is available as stoner’s havens. Prove that this isn’t so by showing the professional side of the marijuana industry through your Instagram photos. Curate photos that are polished. Don’t make all your photos showcase only plants, and use editing to give your photos a professional look. Avoid photos, memes, or distasteful photos that take away from the professionalism of dispensary owners.
Develop a Strong Brand. Your dispensary will attract more customers and will get more engagement if it is a recognizable brand that people can relate to and recognize easily. Find ways that you can ensure that your photos have a signature look: placing a watermark of your logo on your photos, or using a consistent filter for your photos are some ways that you can do this. Be as creative as possible to ensure that you’re representing your dispensary for the unique business it is.
Engage Your People. Social media is not just about posting a bunch of photos with hashtags. While hashtags are important and are the tools that get you into conversations, show your audience that there are real people behind your brand. Comment on others’ photos, respond to your audience comments, and use your photo descriptions as an opportunity to engage your audience through posing a question or invitation for social media participation. People love to know the soul behind the brand – let your soul shine through your social media engagement.
Be Intentional with Language. While you are likely operating within a state where recreational marijuana has become legalized, there are still some strict restrictions on the language that can be used to market the products of dispensaries. Be sure that you are aware of the advertising restrictions in your state before you talk too openly on social media about your product. Some states do not allow you to name the product specifically, and putting pricing on any marketing content is out of the question. If you are not careful about how you market, you may risk using your Instagram privileges if red flagged.
Think About Using Instagram Influencers. In this day in age, there are thousands of people who are getting famous from Instagram, YouTube and just about every social media platform. Influencers, or specifically Instagram Influencers, are people who you can access (and pay) to endorse your product for you through their Instagram posts. All it takes is a highly-followed Instagram Influencer to place a hashtag to your product to get thousands of people clicking to see what you’re all about. Do some research online and on Instagram to find out who you could possibly enlist to get your brand out through Instagram.
Your dispensary’s Instagram account is quite often the first impression of your customers. Be intentional about your postings and the way you are reaching your potential customer and current clients. Take the time to think about the ways you are representing your dispensary through social media, and where needed, ask for the help of an expert who knows about the best practices for your industry. Your Instagram account is a powerful marketing tool – be sure to use it right!