Hedging An Identity In The Digital Age
If you’re a brand and you’re only on one social media platform you’re doing it wrong.
Author | Dan Osterman
This morning I began my daily routine of locating and posting content on social media for the small businesses I market for and I noticed Instagram wasn’t working. I initially thought it was a “shadow ban” due to someone reporting one of the accounts I manage (it happens often in the cannabis space), but it turns out it was an internal problem. The Facebook family of apps were down World-wide for many users. So it wasn’t just me this time. [sigh of relief…]
When your job is largely integrated with the Social Media platforms of the day it causes one to worry whenever they’re not working. I worry anyway, or I did in the past when I was riding my bike across the country and working remotely. Back then I was solely a “Social Media Manager” and my job was completely dependent upon the social communities - and when we lost our account after I’d organically grown it to 2500+ followers it gave me a little bit of a panic.
The first time Nice Guys lost their instagram account I was located in Denver, Colorado on my bicycle tour and away from headquarters. I felt sick to my stomach. To this day, I haven’t received a response from Instagram after submitting my dispute regularly, stating:
We apologize if any of our pictures violated community guidelines. We agree to adhere to any additional rules we were not aware of going forward. We are a licensed business using your platform to educate members of the validated benefits of medical cannabis for pain relief and other conditions. It would mean a lot to us and our followers if we had access to our profile again. Thank you! 🙏
Marketing and Social Media Manager
In addition to the potential account removal cannabis marketers are NOT allowed to pay for Ad’s on Facebook, Instagram, or any of the other social media platforms so it makes things more difficult right off the get-go. Being confronted with stricter levels of censorship forced me to be more resourceful and look for creative new ways to get our message in front of our audience.
It wasn’t long after getting my initial account taken away that I realized the key to success in social media marketing is in hedging my efforts. Rather than putting all of the eggs in one basket; like facebook or instagram, I decided to adopt a handful of new platforms. It now allows me to access new eyes by sharing content in multiple places and then funneling those eyes back to a desired source - generally our website.
But what I’m most excited about in respect to this conversation is the Podcast we created at work called: The “Not Your Average Nice Guys Podcast,’ which can be found nearly everywhere you listen to podcasts - with the exception of Youtube and Itunes** (But they are coming soon).
Listen to the podcast:
In my opinion, a podcast is the best way today to grow a brand’s identity because you own the distribution and can host the show on your own website. It’s also powerful because it enables people to take advantage of N.E.T time - listening to episode’s while they’re doing other activities like driving a car or working out. I’m completely sold on podcasts.
Marketing in the cannabis space is challenging but it’s also an experience I wake up grateful to have everyday. There are a lot of people who complain about the challenges of regulations and oversight but the train is moving and it’s up to us to keep our businesses up with the pace. The more people come out of the cannabis closet and talk about their experiences the better chance we have of creating an industry and market “we the people” consuming enjoy.
Otherwise, we can stand by and let the people who largely don’t care about the plant or the people consuming it to make the rules. Because the infrastructure is being laid out one way or the other - we can take a passive role or we can help shape the development of this new industry. I stand on the side of activism.
If you’re interested in learning about the validated benefits of cannabis for health I recommend visiting: Nice Guys Delivery and locating the blog. I also recommend finding Nice Guys on social media.