What is Influencer Marketing?
With the cannabis industry being restricted on advertising it makes it difficult to get your products in front of the right people. Facebook and Instagram have also restricted advertising options to cannabis companies as cannabis is still considered a Schedule 1 drug under the federal government. A great alternative many companies have found to get their products and message in front of the right audience are the use of “influencers” on social media.
Connecting with influencers that share the values your company offers is a great way to see ROI on your efforts. If you are a cannabis company focusing on showcasing an action lifestyle, connecting with people who are runners, weight lifters, and yoga instructors is a good place to start. LIkewise, if you are interested in targeting canna-curious moms finding influencers like The Stoner Mom is a good option.
Sometimes conducting an influencer marketing campaign is as easily as direct messaging individuals and pitching your product in exchange for a social media post. Some influencers may request payment outside of product promotion for their efforts. For those looking to create a more organized campaign engaging 5 or more influencers, companies can seek the assistance of a Marketing Agency like Youwho Brand to organize a greater number of influencers for a longer duration of time.
Once you have an influencer on board you can create a set of guidelines influencers must follow in return for the product or discount offered. The method in which you do this can vary, but it’s always important to make sure both parties understand the terms and conditions of the agreement.
Less is More
Not all influencers are created equal. While influencers with followers in the tens of thousands may seem more lucrative you have to think about how effective and connected those influencers actually are to their followers. Often times we have learned that “micro influencers” have a greater impact on their audience and are more effective for promotional purposes.
According to Forbes micro-influencers are those with 10,000-500,000 followers, however, I’d conclude that someone with 1,000-5,000 influencers is more within the scope of a “micro influencer.” In the cannabis industry we have noticed that those with less followers are actually more effective with their messaging and their audience has greater loyalty in return.
While influencer marketing is an effective way to market your cannabis products there is still some risk involved. Since cannabis is federally illegal and Instagram and Facebook discourage the promotion of cannabis consumption online it is a risk for influencers to promote products in this way. It’s important to make the influencer aware of the risk up front in case their page is shut down. No one wants to be blamed for someone’s hard work and engagement of over 10,000 followers to be shut down from a post you asked them to promote. Making sure the influencer is not directly selling or offering pricing on their posts is a way to steer clear of the Instagram police.
Influencer marketing is a great new age way to market in the digital world and offers more authentic engagement and messaging about your company. Educating the influencers on your product and company’s mission also helps guide the messaging for you. If you are interested in learning more about the services Youwho offers for both Influencers and Companies, check out our testimony from our latest influencer campaign.