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The 3 best ways to market cannabis for women on social media

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Facebook or Twitter? Instagram or LinkedIn? Email or website? The rules for marketing cannabis change based on state, country, and age. With a magnitude of regulations restricting communications with potential consumers, how can cannabis brands develop a consistent marketing message, particularly those speaking to a female audience? Here are the three best ways to market cannabis for women on social media. 

1. Focus on your audience, not your product.

Most cannabis websites, targeted at women or otherwise, have detailed information available about their products and their investment opportunities. You can access that information after successfully navigating the age gate, entering both your province and your birth date. Though these required steps are easy ones, they slow down the process of learning more about what cannabis products are available, as well as why a visitor should engage with a deeper relationship with this brand to eventually purchase those products.

To simplify this process, while maintaining the required age gate, brands should add a Start Here section on their websites to aid users in gaining familiarity with their offerings. Savvy cannabis consumers will already know where to go to find what they want from their preferred brands. However, new and potential cannabis users have a learning journey to go on. Your brand can act as their tour guide into the world of cannabis. And once these users are ready to make a purchase, have a How to Buy section available, like cannabis brand Irisa has included at the top right of their website. 

2. Say Hello to your followers.

Whether your fans engage with your brand on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, join the conversation. Learn about who your followers are and find what they want, both in relation to cannabis information and their lifestyles. Ask what they are looking for, where they first found out about your brand, and how they like to spend their time offline. Though your male followers may interact with you in a more transactional manner–mainly concerned about the quality of your products and where to purchase them–your female fans may prefer a broader and deeper understanding of who your brand is and what you stand for. Entering into conversations with the women interested in your brand–like cannabis brand Van der Popcommunicates through their Instagram profile–will help build ongoing relationships with these potential consumers. 

3. Educate and entertain.

Though the regulations on marketing cannabis online can be rigorous, brands can use this weakness as a strength. Since the emphasis of the cannabis conversation is on education, not sales, this is a valuable way to engage the larger audience of women who want to know what cannabis can do for them. Cannabis brands like Canndora and Milkweed encourage website visitors to sign up for their newsletters, which go directly to their email addresses and can offer additional content that is subject to less scrutiny than if were published on a public platform like Facebook or Twitter.

Ontario-based brand Eve & Co shares videos on their YouTube channel. Leafly, the self-described “world’s largest cannabis information resource”, offers quizzes to help their readers learn more about plants and products, including “How Well Do You Know Cannabis Plant Anatomy?” and “How Well Do You Know Your THC vs. Your CBD?”. By employing creative methods to engage with your audience, you can teach them about your products. Show your fans how your brands can satisfy their needs, for example, how your cannibol (CBN) offerings could aid with their insomnia, an area explored in the Alpha Woman article, “Suffer from Insomnia? Cannabinol (CBN) is your new friend.”

Though cannabis brands face challenges to communicating with their audiences on social media, those challenges are not insurmountable. Focusing on your audience, engaging in conversation with your followers, and educating users in an entertaining way are the three best ways to market cannabis for women on social media.

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Mahlena-Rae Johnson

MAHLENA-RAE JOHNSON is a Social Media Marketing Manager and Multicultural Storyteller, who grew up on the mean beaches of St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. During her senior year of high school, she was named Most Likely to Kidnap a Backstreet Boy. She has published 4 books, 4 web series, 6 websites, and over 1000 online articles for international audiences. As a recent transplant from the United States to Canada, Mahlena is still learning how to navigate the streets of Downtown Toronto, wondering whether to dress for sleet or sunshine during her first Canadian spring, and preparing for inevitable encounters with curious moose.

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