The cannabis industry is on fire, and simply, good cannabis needs good content
What exactly is content?
Content is not just using words on your web page and throwing up keywords in a half-assed manner to trick search engines. Yes, while it’s important to have an on-point SEO strategy, which we’ll discuss later, you simply can’t get by as a cannabis business without producing up-to-date, relevant content. Content comes in all forms – written content, graphics, infographics, videos, and the content creation world is coming up with new ways to engage customers daily. Content engages, informs, educates, advertises, and creates customer loyalty. These are all elements of the customer experience that a cannabis dispensary strives for. What are some content strategies that will get your dispensary noticed?
First and foremost, your website can act as a hub for your cannabis content, and structured and updated in such a way that your site remains relevant. Working with keywords and aiming for strong Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will give you the opportunity to write your pieces in a way that matches what people are searching for, having your resource rank high on their search results. Blogging gives you the opportunity to stand out as an expert in your field or section of the cannabis industry. As a cannabis dispensary, it can serve as a place to share best practices for marijuana retail. It’s also a platform to share new and emerging information about the cannabis industry, and the ways you’re working to make your own impact. With so much information being developed about cannabis at alarming rates, there is a need for accurate, truthful, and resourceful information for people interested in cannabis and what you offer as a dispensary. When designing your blogging strategy, consider your frequency of blogging (it can never be too much, as long as it’s quality), word count, and thoughtful topics that will grab people’s attention.
About 65% of people are visual learners, meaning that they take in information through graphics, illustration, and photos rather than large blocks of texts. This means that in addition to your blog strategy, you should have a graphic alternative to accommodate visual learners. An infographic is a great way to educate your followers, relay important information, and if done right, you can use infographics as a way to create more leads and potential customers for your dispensary. Good infographics should provide value to the customer, add to the existing knowledge base on the internet (not just replicated it), and be relevant to the audience you’re trying to engage into your cannabis dispensary.
That old adage that a picture is worth a thousand words is pretty true. Nowadays, it takes under 3 seconds for people to decide whether they want to engage with the online component of a business. If you fail to engage your potential dispensary customer within those first seconds of your page loading, you could potentially lose them forever. Take care with the graphics you are using. If you’re relying on the “available for reuse” photos that you can get through a Google search for your photos, your content won’t be fresh. Purchase a subscription to a Stock Photo site like Shutterstock or iStockPhoto, or use tools like Pixabay where you can have access to great photos if you credit the artist. To take your graphics content game one step further, hire your own photographer. With cannabis photography being an up and coming field, these photographers can take your dispensary and make it shine through photography.
If you’re working in the cannabis space, and AREN’T active on social media, your cannabis company will fall into oblivion and miss crucial opportunities to be promoted. On social media, there is a 24/7 “conversation” around cannabis. Social media is a platform where people share information, dialogue about it, and make connections to each other. If your dispensary hasn’t taken on a full social media strategy, what are you waiting for? Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and LinkedIn are the places where you can engage in the cannabis conversation any time of the day. Your dispensary should also be putting out fresh content daily to keep your relevance apparent and your customer base engaged. Just ensure you’re keeping up with the marketing and advertising regulations in your state or jurisdiction and each platforms TOS requirements with your social media practices.
Anyone you ask in the cannabis business will tell you that they struggle with gaining followers on social media due to the strict advertising guidelines towards anything “illegal” adopted by Facebook and other platforms. Successful cannabis businesses are getting around these social media difficulties by using the medium of video to get through to their potential customer. Facebook Live Feeds is one of the easiest ways to get attention to your dispensary. Why not commit to turning on the camera and featuring your dispensary every couple weeks? It will give your potential client an idea of their customer experience, and help you build a persona as staff and people ready to engage. There is also a very active cannabis community on YouTube, with many companies having their own YouTube channels that discuss all things marijuana. PotTV and the MJ Show are just a few examples.
So, About that Content…
The thing about content is that it is incredibly time consuming, yet 100% necessary for growing your business. Here are a few questions to ask yourself about your cannabis dispensary content strategy:
- How can you utilize the members of your existing cannabis business team to develop your content strategy?
- Are there opportunities to hire writers and content developers that work specifically with the cannabis industry?
- What tools can you implement into your daily work, like social media management platforms like HootSuite, that make content easier?
Content is key, and the time to hesitate on your content strategy is through. Act now to get ahead of the rest of the business in your cannabis content and stand out as experts in marijuana retail.