Yep, I said it. In fact, I say it almost every day as I interact with other brands on behalf of my clients. It’s so disheartening, because I believe in this industry. I want it to be professional, and LOOK professional to those who aren’t in the industry. We have states with medical programs on the ballot in November, and others, like Arizona, who could pass adult-use initiatives. People won’t vote if they aren’t comfortable with us.

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Your social media isn’t going to help the cause. In fact, it will hurt it. Hashtags on Facebook? Most people I talk to don’t even know what a hashtag is (for search, not an accessory!) and have never ever ever ever typed one into the search bar. Yet they use them on their professional Facebook Page. Studies have shown that hashtags on Facebook decrease engagement. WHY would you want to do that? Engagement aside, they make your posts look unprofessional and dirty. Nobody is reading all of them, so why muddy up what you are trying to do?

Memes. People love them. They share them. They are for people, not businesses. If you want a meme on your Facebook Page, Twitter account, etc., make sure YOU created it. Memes that get shared a lot look grainy, blurry, crappy. Is that what you want your business to look like? Crap? Do you work 80 hours a week for that? I certainly don’t.

Instagram. Please, for the love of all that is holy, quit posting memes and other peoples’ content on Instagram. For starters, the Terms of Service that you agreed to (Yes, you agreed to follow the rules when you opened your account. Period.) state that you can “share only photos and videos that you’ve taken or have the right to share.” This means YOUR photos. WHY would you want to brand yourself with someone else’s photos? Would you open a pizza parlor and sell the pizza from your competition down the road? Uhhh…no. Don’t do it on Instagram. Also, the “repost” apps violate the terms of service. If you want someone to use your product, post your own shit.

I get it. There is too much to know and learn. There is an etiquette that you don’t understand. But isn’t your brand worth a professional presence online? If you are offering high-quality products, that video with a gagillion hashtags doesn’t make you look high-quality. It makes you look like a shop in the ghetto. Rough? Maybe. True? Yep.