How to Choose the Right Social Media Platforms

social media platforms
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How to Choose the Right Social Media for your CBD | Cannabis business

We all know how important it is for your Cannabis | CBD business to be seen and heard online.  We also know that social media is a great way of getting that type of online exposure, especially if it is incorporated into a coherent content marketing strategy

But, although we all agree that social media is important, the where, why and what can sometimes be much more difficult to figure out. Not just that but many of us simply do not have the time to be active on a gazillion different social media profiles and I’m often asked: “I have a limited amount of time to so which social media platforms should I use for my small Cannabis | CBD business?”

Here I discuss the most popular social media platforms for Cannabis | CBD  business, why you should consider choosing a particular one, as well as some ideas on the what you can post to each to drive engagement and traffic to your website.

Social Media Platform #1 – Twitter

THE PLATFORM

Although a lot of people love Twitter, in my opinion it is too fast paced.  I feel that the chances of my tweet being buried in the millions of others is just too big which makes the time investment not worth it for me.  However, Twitter is great to help Cannabis | CBD  businesses give company updates and address customer concerns quickly.

  • # of daily active Twitter users: 187 million
  • Time spent: 3.53 minutes per session per day/week
THE WHY

If your Cannabis | CBD  business has a large element of customers service, then this is definitely a platform of choice.

Demographics
Takeaways based on Twitter demographics
  1. Usage, user-base and growth have remained fairly consistent year-to-year.
  2. It’s relatively straightforward, shorter-term interactions signal it as a place to gather quick news or conduct customer service.
  3. Twitter’s status as a place to discuss events and gather breaking news make it a prime place to share content and drive discussions
  4. But advertising is still tricky. However, in the CBD | Cannabis industry this actually works to our advantage because it puts content at the forefront
  5. 80% of tweets come from 10% of the platform’s most active accounts, signaling the prominence of influencers and “power users” on Twitter.
  6. 42% of Twitter users are degree-holders (compared to 31% for the average population) highlighting the platform’s demographics for higher-earners (depending on your industry).
  7. Twitter is a CBD | Cannabis Industry friendly platform.
THE What

Twitter has become a kind of hub for people making it a good place to show of expertise, company updates, products / services as well as informative content.

Content Ideas:
  • How-to’s and other informative blog posts with a shortened link (Bitly is great for this)
  • Positive company, brand, products and/or services news and updates
  • Partner shout-outs and employee recognition
  • Questionnaires and polls
  • Promotional codes and discounts

Social Media Platform #2 – Linkedin

THE PLATFORM

By far the most business-oriented of the social media platforms, LinkedIn is best for helping establish an online presence as a business.  On LinkedIn, networking is also far more important than posting content. 

THE WHY

While a great place to form connections and network with others in the industry, it’s not the best place to focus your marketing.  However, it is perfect for smaller Cannabis | CBD  businesses to promote their services.

Demographics
Takeaways based on LinkedIn demographics
  1. Contrary to popular belief, LinkedIn does not only cater to an older audience. Millennials make up about one-fourth of the platform.
  2. A higher-educated, higher-earning B2B demographic makes LinkedIn a potential goldmine for networking, lead generation and promoting events | services | products.
  3. LinkedIn is surprisingly, very CBD | Cannabis Industry friendly.
  4. Marketing on LinkedIn is very different to most other networks due to its older, primarily B2B audience.
  5. According to LinkedIn themselves, it’s the top rated social network for lead generation, making it a great source for B2B marketers looking to find targeted and motivated audiences for their campaigns.
  6. Over 70% of LinkedIn users live outside of the U.S., presenting opportunities for businesses and brands looking to grow their international audience.
THE What

Think of LinkedIn as an opportunity to share your company culture with industry thought leaders, new customers and potential recruits.

Content Ideas:
  • Blog posts with a personal comment and a URL to the blog post
  • Industry news and research
  • In-depth, how-to and list-style posts
  • Simple posts that include leadership tips and tricks
  • Personal, employee or company updates

Need to DIY your Content Marketing? Find the 30 Best, Free Marketing Tools you should use.

Social Media Platform #3 – Pinterest

THE PLATFORM

With the exception of my husband, I really do not know anyone that does not have a Pinterest account.  It’s great for organizing ideas, wish-list items, useful information and anything else that need to be kept within reach.

THE WHY

Because people us Pinterest during the research phase of their purchasing process, it is great at reducing the number of steps from discovery to conversion, making it easier for people to get straight to the source.

Demographics
Takeaways based on pinterest demographics
  1. Pinterest’s predominately female user-base highlights one of the most significant differences in gender demographics for social media platforms.
  2. Recently, there has been a spike in usage among Gen Z and millennials (with the number of users under 25 growing twice as fast as users 25+).
  3. Pinterest is perhaps the most product-focused of any social network: there are massive ad opportunities given the platform’s high-earning base.
  4. Although TikTok, Snapchat and Instagram get the most attention when it comes to the younger social crowd, Pinterest still has a place among younger users.
THE What

Think of it as a kind of visual search engine making it great for both product and service based Cannabis | CBD  businesses.

Content Ideas:
  • Most importantly, pin other peoples pins. But do so strategically
  • Blog posts with a link to your blog and an attention grabbing image
  • Pin each and every product / service you sell online
  • Infographics
  • DIY and How-To pins if you are product based

Social Media Platform #4 – Facebook

THE PLATFORM

Arguably the oldest social media platform that’s actually still in use today. Having a Facebook page is for great for networking, communicating, and establishing a credible presence, but without the formality of the more job-oriented LinkedIn.  Unfortunately for Cannabis | CBD  businesses, running ads are still a bit hit and miss although this seems to be changing.

THE WHY

It’s still popular.  Very popular.  So popular in fact that at the end of 2020, Facebook logged 2,7 billion monthly active users with 1,5 billion of them logging onto Facebook daily.  The demographics of Facebook is also relatively unique with seniors being a growing demographic.

Demographics
Takeaways based on facebook demographics
  1. Despite ongoing controversies, “adpocalypses” and ever-emerging competition, Facebook still remains the most-used and engaged-with social platform.
  2. If you have the time and resources, engaging with the influx of boomers to Facebook (who are also fastest growing demographic for CBD | Cannabis) in groups and on pages can produce a great ROI
  3. The notion that the younger crowd has totally ditched Facebook isn’t quite true (but as highlighted by some of our additional social media demographics below, it’s definitely not the younger crowd’s #1 platform).
  4. Facebook is not CBD | Cannabis Industry friendly so be careful not to violate their TOS.
THE What

Really anything that will engage, amuse, inform and entertain your ideal clients.

Content Ideas:
  • Images and videos of your products /services
  • Blog posts with a link to your blog and an attention grabbing image
  • Other people’s content – great for building a tribe and getting your stuff shared as well
  • Inspirational and funny quotes
  • Promotions, questions and polls
 

Social Media Platform #5 – Instagram

THE PLATFORM

Instagram is basically a photo app for sharing a curated collection of photos with others and engaging followers through comments and likes. 

 

THE WHY

As a photo app where users upload and share images, it’s visual, it’s vibrant and it’s effective.   It’s fantastic for both product and service based Cannabis | CBD  businesses, and a great platform to market your goods, services and content.  And if you’re smart about it and thanks to hashtags, it’s also relatively easy to reach all those people you would like as your ideal customers.

 

Demographics
  • B2C, Foreign & International Markets, Niche Markets (although not CBD | Cannabis Industry friendly)
  • Largest age group: 46-55
  • Gender: 51% male, 49% female
Takeaways based on instagram demographics
  1. Contrary to popular belief, LinkedIn does not only cater to an older audience. Millennials make up about one-fourth of the platform.
  2. A higher-educated, higher-earning B2B demographic makes LinkedIn a potential goldmine for networking, lead generation and promoting events | services | products.
  3. LinkedIn is surprisingly, very CBD | Cannabis Industry friendly.
  4. Marketing on LinkedIn is very different to most other networks due to its older, primarily B2B audience.
  5. According to LinkedIn themselves, it’s the top rated social network for lead generation, making it a great source for B2B marketers looking to find targeted and motivated audiences for their campaigns.
  6. Over 70% of LinkedIn users live outside of the U.S., presenting opportunities for businesses and brands looking to grow their international audience.
THE What

High quality images with attention grabbing captions that engage and entertain your ideal clients.

 

Content Ideas:
  • High-quality images and videos about your products / services (use your Instagram stories!)
  • Blog posts (get an app like Linktree to display post links in your bio)
  • Behind-the-scenes, team and event photo’s
  • Inspirational or funny quotes
  • Promotions, questions and polls
 

Check out our article on how to set up and use Instagram for your Cannabis | CBD Business

Social Media Platform #6 – Youtube

THE PLATFORM

Instagram is basically a photo app for sharing a curated collection of photos with others and engaging followers through comments and likes. 

 

THE WHY

As a photo app where users upload and share images, it’s visual, it’s vibrant and it’s effective.   It’s fantastic for both product and service based Cannabis | CBD  businesses, and a great platform to market your goods, services and content.  And if you’re smart about it and thanks to hashtags, it’s also relatively easy to reach all those people you would like as your ideal customers.

 

Demographics
Takeaways based on youTube demographics
  1. YouTube’s popularity among younger users highlights the ongoing, long-term shift toward video content.
  2. Still, only 18% of YouTube users claim to use YouTube to discover brands and products. Brands still have a lot of work to do on the platform, finding a balance between entertainment and advertising.
  3. Given that 62% of YouTube’s users log into the platform daily, it’s safe to say that the platform is the go-to video network for the Internet at large.
  4. Although many people talk about their  CBD | Cannabis experiences on YouTube, the platform as a whole not particularly friendly for CBD | Cannabis businesses
THE What

High quality images with attention grabbing captions that engage and entertain your ideal clients.

Content Ideas:
  • Customer testimonials
  • Product demos
  • How-to, explainer, tutorial and education videos
  • Interviews, events, and behind-the-scenes content
  • Video Blogs | YouTube Live

AN ACTION PLAN

  1. Set your goals and find out what you want from your social media
  2. Pick the two most relevant social media platforms for your Cannabis | CBD  business
  3. Decide what kind of content is the most relevant for each and organize these into “content buckets”
  4. Create a content calendar to create a coherent and effective posting strategy that takes your goals into account
  5. Prioritize the social media platform with which you identify most and get personally involved.  Then automate the other by using an app such as Later (you can use this link to sign up for free).
  6. Focus on establishing a solid presence around these two platforms and keep on going at it.
  7. Monitor your stats and find out what your audience likes most and what isn’t doing so well. Then concentrate on refining your post content to drive engagement.
 

take home message

From the above you can see that, as a Cannabis | CBD business, you really need to plan and prioritize your social media strategy – ideally making it part of your overall content marketing strategy. But what is also clear is that in order to be effective and establish a solid online presence, less really is more. Especially if you are a smaller cannabis company with limited man-power and resources, focussing on the two most relevant platforms (for me it’s Instagram and Pinterest) is a much better option than a kind of spray and pray approach.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lieze Boshoff (B.Psych, M.Sc (HCN)) is the founder of LBC3 Marketing + LBC3 Academy a leading Cannabis Marketing agency + training academy for the CBD | Cannabis Industry. Additional work experience includes working as an account manager and then a corporate training and development manager in London, and a university lecturer + researcher in Germany and The Netherlands.

Her areas of expertise encompass all aspects of Cannabis Marketing, including Content Creation, Copywriting, Email Marketing, and Lead Generation. As a specialist in her field, she helps small to medium sized CBD | Cannabis businesses with  her work as Cannabis Marketing professional, educator and mentor.

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