While COVID has made things harder for businesses around the world, it’s important that businesses do what they can to take advantage of the reality of our new norm: everyone is on the internet. This presents a huge opportunity for any business with an online marketing or digital marketing strategy.
One thing that COVID has shown us that despite the world being shut down, the cannabis industry is still extremely active. In fact, it has continued to grow in some places. In April 2020, Washington recreational marijuana sales eclipsed $106 million according to Headset. While in other places like California where the sales aren’t increasing at an exponential rate like in Washington, they are still increasing or at least haven’t suffered as damaging of an impact from corona as some industries like the restaurant industry.
So, with everyone online, and with demand for cannabis clearly holding steady, this is a perfect time to ramp up your digital marketing strategy and increase brand awareness online. While text message marketing, native ads, other forms of digital advertising will no doubt be essential in this, content marketing will also be exceptionally important for you and your marketing team to focus on.
For those who aren’t familiar, content marketing is a marketing approach focused on creating and putting out content that is targeted towards a specific audience. The goal of this is to increase brand awareness and promote profitable customer action. What’s great about content marketing is the fact that your content strategy doesn’t have to put a dent in your marketing budget. As one of the cheapest online marketing techniques, content marketing is a perfect marketing strategy for a marketer on a budget. That’s right, in many cases, content marketing is extremely cheap if not free. But just as important as answering the question,“What is it?” is answering the question, “how effective is it?”
According to recent studies, it is extremely effective. One study found that content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing strategies all while generating 3x as many leads. Another study found that conversion rates are nearly 6x higher for marketers who put an emphasis on content marketing vs. those who didn’t put a focus on content marketing or put out the wrong content.
With numbers like this, you won’t want to overlook content marketing. In this article we will be looking at 5 types of content you can start putting out today that can help you generate leads and increase your brand awareness. In this, we will be discussing tactics like:
Each piece of content you put out for each of these categories will work for you in creating possible leads and spreading brand awareness. So, let’s jump right into discussing how blogging can do big things for your content marketing strategy.
Blogging is a great way to bolster your content marketing efforts. In fact, studies have found that blog content is among the most shared content online and that 53% of marketers view blogging as their top priority in their content marketing strategy.
When it comes to blogging, you want to make sure that your blogs are targeted towards your business’s target audience. Moreover, you want to make sure that it is helping solve a problem or giving them insight on whatever they are interested in. For example, in our case, we are targeting this post towards our clients, who are mostly dispensaries, who might be wondering how to better their marketing strategy during the pandemic.
But this isn’t all you need to do in order to ensure that your blogs attack the right attention and get you leads, you’ll also need to make sure your blogs are optimized. SEO optimization involves including certain keywords in your article that make it pop up towards the top of a search engine’s results when someone searches certain keywords that your article is targeting. For example, if you wanted to write a blog that targeted the google search “Dispensary text message marketing,” then you would want to plug that search into an SEO software, identify keywords you should include in your article, and add them in. This will help make sure your blog reaches the right audience.
Besides SEO optimization, you’ll also need to make sure that your title and the length of your articles is appropriate. According to Hubspot, blog post titles with 6-13 words get the most traffic, and the average blog post is 1142 words. Additionally, incorporating images and graphics into your blog posts helps to break them up and increase engagement.
Posts on social media platforms are another great way to add depth to your content marketing strategy, especially when a majority of your target audience is using social media daily. Social media marketing campaigns have proven to be extremely effective, especially in times like these where the world is practically living online. Even before COVID, 90% of marketers said that social media marketing generated “immense” exposure. Just imagine the kind of exposure you can get on social media now.
While all social media channels should be utilized, Instagram is an exceptionally powerful platform and is where you can most effectively increase brand awareness. Instagram is special because it allows you to grab your audience with eye-catching pictures while also connecting with them through captions and keeping in touch with them in the comments. What makes it even more powerful are Instagram’s stories where you can give your customers a special behind the scenes look into your dispensary.
1 billion people use Instagram every month and 500 million people use Instagram’s stories daily. That means the potential reach you’ll have on the platform could be huge. Of these users, a whopping 63% log-in at least once a day according to the Pew Research Center. That means you’ll have the opportunity to connect with your customer base at least once a day.
When it comes to what you post on your social media, it is ultimately up to you. While it could lead to trouble you could post pictures of your products and discuss cannabis, but if you want to avoid any complications it is best that you don’t post any pictures of cannabis, cannabis-related products like bongs, or people smoking cannabis. It is also important that you don’t mention it in your bio or try to sell it via social media channels. Instead, your goal should be to increase brand awareness. this may seem hard to do as a cannabis dispensary, it is possible and you can still build a substantial following by posting things like:
On top of all of this, you can even let your customers or other cannabis users on social media do marketing and content creation for you with influencer marketing. Influencers are crucial to take advantage of if you want to make sure that you’re reaching as many potential customers as possible with your social media content.
As of late, videos have been exploding in popularity for marketers. In fact, 48% of marketers are saying that they’re making posting videos on YouTube a priority. On top of that, according to the Aberdeen group, marketers who use video get 66% more leads per year, and video will make up 82% of all internet traffic by 2021 according to Cisco.
When it comes to what you’re posting, it could be anything from videos reviewing products, educational videos, videos for a marketing campaign, or just videos you and your dispensary make for fun. Whatever it is, put it out. What’s important is that you get content out that will attract attention to your dispensary. With that being said, you’ll want to make sure that the videos you’re putting out are quality, so you’ll want to hire someone who actually knows how to create videos for this part of your content marketing plan.
Launching merch is a great and innovative way to go about giving your content marketing strategy an advantage. While many only think about what content they can be putting out online, it is important to think about physical content (merch) as well.
According to recent studies, promotional products can have a big impact: 90% of people who receive a promotional product can recall the name of the brand, and that promotional product can have on average 344 impressions per month.
Whether it’s T-shirts, sweatshirts, cannabis-related products like branded bongs, phone cases, or even socks, launching your own line of merch can both help you increase brand awareness and provide your dispensary with another revenue source. Not to mention, it ties in wonderfully with a loyalty rewards program.
If you want to learn more about the benefits of launching your own line of merch, check out our other article here.
There are lots of ways to put out content, clearly. Content-creation is great because you can build your brand awareness and improve your overall lead generation through multiple marketing channels like blogging, social media, videos, merchandise, cannabis-related products, and more, the opportunity is there, you just have to find what’s right for your cannabis business and run with it! That being said, an effective marketing plan will require many other things to go along with your content marketing efforts like a loyalty program, text messaging, and more.
Want to learn more about the cannabis industry at large, other marketing tactics, and how to reach your business goals and grow your business? Click here to check out our website.