As a cannabis content marketer, I often receive questions from cannabis industry business owners wondering about the value of blogging for business. More specifically, in 2022, with a whopping 6+ million blog posts published worldwide every day, it’s understandable to question the relevancy of maintaining a business blog. Especially when social media is so big.
In short: YES, it is.
In general terms,blogging is the core of content marketing and an important tool for cannabis businesses to use to improve the search engine optimization (SEO) – needed for bringing visibility – of their websites. For small cannabis businesses, in particular, budgets may be more limited than those of larger cannabis companies. This makes business blogging even vital.
As a matter of fact, blogging has been noted as the most effective type of content marketing (outdoing email marketing, whitepapers, and eBooks) by a large margin – when done well.
So, it’s hardly a surprise to learn blogging is what fuels your cannabis business growth. The most practical advice is to amend your content marketing strategy to incorporate blogging. If your marketing efforts are already stretched thin, or you are the sole person behind the business operations, get in touch and Booklexia Content Marketing will be happy to help.
Your Cannabis Business Needs a Blog
In today’s world of fast-paced, available-in-half-a-second media, the continued value of blogging for business is hardly shocking. In addition to boosting overall SEO, website traffic, and digital brand presence, it will also help potential and current customers to gain more knowledge of the cannabis industry, your brand, the products you offer, and the way the products are used by consumers.
Primary Benefits of Cannabis Business Blogging in 2022
Maintaining a blog provides your cannabis business with the opportunity to diversify its website content, reaching more of your target audience.
This extended audience reach provides long-term benefits, driving traffic to your website and raising the likelihood of turning those website browsers into customers. In fact, research shows that 56% of consumers have made a purchase because of what they read in the business’ blog post.
If your cannabis business blog discusses the industry and how your products can help the average consumer’s everyday pain points, then your audiences can build trust in your brand’s industry authority. This trust in your expertise and credibility can ultimately result in sales.
If a potential customer trusts the advice or the information they read in your blog posts, they will trust that your products are of better value than those of your competitors, based on your brand’s industry knowledge, customer insight, and the pain points your products resolve.
Additionally, blog posts provide a chance to directly link to a landing or product menu page. Cannabis consumers can discover your content during a Google search, read your business blog post, and then click through to the product purchasing page with low hesitation after your content has compelled them to purchase a product.
Strategizing Your Blog Content
Now, after realizing the valuable impact of blogging that puts it at the core of content marketing, many cannabis business owners drive right in and start churning out as many blog posts as possible.
While it’s easy to understand why that seems the way to go, this isn’t really the right move.
See: You want to increase your business growth and have tried numerous different digital marketing tactics, ranging from email marketing to social media, and even a podcast. In addition, you have in-depth knowledge and insights you can offer your potential and current customers.
However, upon review of the last six months of content creation and distribution, it’s apparent you are far from seeing the results you were expecting.
If you have been using content marketing for some time and still haven’t made much progress toward your marketing goals, then it’s likely your content marketing strategy needs improvement – or you don’t have one at all.
First, let’s take a look at your expected results and whether or not they were realistic:
Assuming you wanted to grow your cannabis business website traffic and raise the number of organic users you were receiving. If you initially had 200-300 organic sessions each month and wanted to increase that to 1,000 sessions, that’s going to be difficult – especially without a clear content strategy. Content marketing is a long-term practice, so you will not likely reach that goal in just one month – likely not even in three.
Without a content strategy, even if you did reach 1,000 organic sessions as you wanted, you would likely plateau around that benchmark and stagnate. Furthermore, those sessions may very well not even be from people who plan to buy your products or have any interest in your brand.
But, before covering the steps for developing your cannabis business content strategy, you need to consider a few points:
Do not expect to receive immediate results. You are likely to not even see notable changes within the first three to four months. While this is understandably frustrating, content marketing is a long-term practice. Once you see results and continue with your content marketing, you will keep seeing traffic growth that may accelerate as you build your domain authority.
Having a content strategy is vital. Once you create a strategy, execution depends on a process-focused approach. Don’t just work on your content on an as-needed basis. Instead, plan out your content creation for each month. Develop a process for the content creation as well, remembering that consistency is crucial. Don’t do eight blog posts one month, then six, and then four for the new few months. Stick to a consistent production schedule.
Now, here’s your step-by-step plan for developing a content strategy, so you can get started with implementing it for your cannabis brand.
Developing an Effective Cannabis Content Marketing Strategy
The most effective cannabis business content marketing strategies will balance what your audience is looking for with what you want to share with them (your marketing message).
1. Set your content marketing goals
While virtually every cannabis brand stands to benefit from content marketing, your reason for implementing and using content can’t be “because I need to.”
You need to establish content marketing goals that align with your broader marketing and business goals, and determine the metrics with which you will measure success. By doing this as the very start of creating your content marketing strategy, you can map out all of your subsequent efforts toward achieving those goals and make the most efficient use of your time and resources.
2. Know your target audience
It’s hard to create content that resonates if you don’t know who the audience is intended to be. Developing customer personas is one of the best ways to extract information about your target customers, such as:
Hobbies and interests
Communities they are active in
Preferred sources of information about cannabis and cannabis products
What they want, need, or are interested in when looking at your products
Criteria for making purchasing decisions
It’s alright if you don’t know all of this information right away; simply build a depiction of your ideal customer in as much detail as possible, and then use that persona to create content they would need and want. A great deal of insight can be gained through surveys or observing the discourse of cannabis consumers on social media platforms.
Your cannabis content marketing planning would also benefit from individual conversations with customers and potential customers. Having one-on-one discussions will provide you with priceless insight into consumer motivations, and will likely inspire more than a couple cannabis business blog post ideas.
3. Map the customer journey
Providing the right type of content at the right time and to the right people is key, so you need to know how your target customers move through the sales funnel to get to the purchasing point.
Large, expensive purchases usually have a longer customer journey and include them doing more product comparisons and research. These customers require more extensive information from the cannabis businesses they are considering purchasing from, and will have more questions that need answering. Small, less expensive products may be sold easily, so shorter content is likely more effective.
Once you gain a firm understanding of your target customer’s purchasing decisions, you can map out your content to address their pain points and provide the information they are looking for before they need to ask for it.
4. Identify your cannabis brand’s unique value
One of the most salient building blocks for your brand’s content marketing strategy is a clear understanding of what makes your cannabis business different from the others. A competitive analysis will help clarify what your competition does and says. Compare your marketing messages and unique value points to theirs. Find the aspects that set you apart and give you advantage, and center your cannabis business blog content around that.
5. Develop your cannabis brand narrative
Consumers respond to stories.
One of the most important facets of a lasting cannabis brand and an established, loyal fan base is a story that potential and current customers alike can connect with. Having a brand narrative is effective because it builds a bridge between emotion and information, and it’s that emotion that will build consumer-brand trust and customer loyalty. Storytelling makes your cannabis brand feel authentic, real, and approachable to consumers.
6. Review and inventory existing brand content
If you are in the midst of implementing a new content marketing plan, but already have a fair amount of blog content on your cannabis business website, then you need to first take inventory of your content to see what is already there. Then, review the content for quality and brand relevance. Utilize your Google Analytics to determine the most successful content.
7. Determine your blog content pillars
Content pillars are three to five primary topics your cannabis business will cover in-depth throughout your blog content. These pillars are also called “content categories.”
There are several reasons to identify and organize your content pillars:
Help your blog stay focused on the content directly relevant to your cannabis business’ target customers and their needs. These topics answer questions, educate, and solve problems for your audience.
Enable consistency and cohesiveness throughout your brand messaging, facilitating trust and establishing your brand’s cannabis industry credibility.
Provide clarity about your cannabis industry niche, brand messaging, and target audience.
Create supplementary topics around your product inventory and support your overall content marketing goals.
Strategically planning and creating blog content based on your content pillars will maximize your content marketing strategy.
Identify and invest the most time and effort into your set of content pillars, create buyers guides and other content supporting those key categories for your cannabis business blog, and your website traffic will likely increase more than if you were to produce thin content that covers a broad range of categories across multiple website pages.
8. Create your editorial calendar
Start by strategizing and filling in your editorial calendar with the most substantive content your brand has planned, and then add in everything else around it.
Your most substantive content should clearly align with your brand’s target audience and content marketing goals, supporting their highest needs. Turn that dense content into derivative pieces of content. For instance – if you have a dabbers buying guide, there could be a piece of information in that guide that you can turn into a separate blog post, infographic, or engaging post for social media.
In addition to contributing to the cohesive marketing message of your cannabis brand, this will also maximize the time and resources spent on content creation.
Don’t skip the timely events, holidays, and deals most important to your brand.
9. Maintain and manage your cannabis blog content
Before you get too far ahead in your cannabis business content marketing plan, make sure you have the workflow and operations available to maintain it. You want to schedule regular content reviews, updates, and repurposing into your plan, as well as the metrics by which you’re measuring content performance.
Once you publish a blog post, you need to continue to leverage it and expand on it, just like you would any other facet of your content marketing strategy.
Cannabis Business Blogging is Still Necessary, but Strategy is Needed
If you only take away one thing from this, it’s not necessarily that content marketing is effective – it’s that a content marketing strategy is required. Without a set strategy, it may not work. If you’re just getting started with your cannabis business’ content marketing, step back and look at the big picture.
You need to have an understanding of your brand’s target audience, goals, and value propositions. It’s a large investment putting in the time and the effort necessary for content marketing, so it’s important to maximize that investment to produce significant returns.
Sometimes, a bit of outside help is needed, which is why Booklexia Content Marketing offers monthly content marketing services for cannabis businesses looking to grow their brand.
Get in touch with me today to discuss your cannabis brand’s content marketing.
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