Updated: Mar 20
Today, Lindsey Bartlett, Forbes Contributor, wrote: "Social Media Is A Minefield For The Cannabis Industry. Are Solutions on the Horizon?" Her story confirms the problems in the cannabis industry.
Her story states all of the problems I created Hi-Curious to solve. We have been on the app store for 2 years. Berner is not the only game in town. I have been hustling to help cannabis entrepreneurs and creators diversify their platforms for three years.
3 years ago I started solving the problems that still face the cannabis industry. So before we all hail Berner and WeedMaps, I ask you to take a look at this female founder who had this vision and acted on it, ME!
How Hi-Curious Smooths out The Minefield for Cannabis Creators & Businesses
Have you watched The Social Dilemma? It's an expose on the social media and tech industry; proving that the technology that connects us also controls, manipulates, distracts, polarizes & monetizes us. The way they do that; algorithms. Algorithms are created to try to get you to spend more time and buy more things. I can't comment on what Berner and WeedMaps are creating, but WeedMaps definitely already has the algorithm game down, so I would expect that's how they're driving revenue. You know you're a slave to the algorithm on Instagram etc. In fact, it's been talked about lately that cannabis only exists in its own bubble on social media. No one can find us and we are only talking to each other.
On Hi-Curious, there are no algorithms and we don't make money by selling your data to companies. We exist to help curious consumers find creators and brands to learn from and to trust.
2) MONETIZING CANNABIS EDUCATION & ENTERTAINMENT:
When I first got into cannabis, many influencers I connected with asked me to become their managers. The problem was that there was nowhere for them to make money on social media. I built Hi-Curious so that cannabis creators and entrepreneurs could have a) control over their content and community, and b) a place to take debit and credit cards for subscriptions to their premium content.
Two years ago, it was hard to convince people that a day would come where others would pay them for access to their premium content. That day has come. And, cannabis entertainers, advocates, creators, entrepreneurs, podcasters can monetize their content that is "unsuitable" for mainstream social media through tiered subscriptions, premium livestream access, workshops, courses, coaching and more.
3) DIVERSIFYING YOUR PLATFORMS:
The primary reason I started building the Hi-Curious Mobile App in 2019 was to diversify my platforms. As an influencer marketing expert and pioneer, I knew that building community would be the key to my success in cannabis. But, I saw way too much risk in building my community solely on mainstream social media. That risk has only increased in the past three years, and as Lindsey Bartlett discusses in her article, the best way to de-risk your social media business is by diversifying and developing a channel strategy that is sustainable for your team.
Here's what I mean --
1. Develop a Channel Strategy -- decide which platforms are going to work for you for acquisition, loyalty, awareness, community-building, networking, thought-leadership.
2. Start with a hub or 'main platform' -- this should be where you house the majority of your content and should allow you to manage your content (and even monetize it.) -- might I suggest, Hi-Curious?
3. Use your most mainstream-friendly, "clean" content for social media and invite your followers to see more on your premium channel.