Talking Cannabis with Happy Tokes. (Madison)
We sat down with @HappyTokes (Madison) and chatted about Cannabis, dabbing, the happy tokes tribe, and more.
Here is what she had to say:
BL: What's up Happy Tokes? Is it ok if we call you that?
HT: Thank you for taking the time to speak with me about myself and my community. It’s so exciting to have the opportunity to answer your questions! If we were shaking hands, I would introduce myself as Madison. Though, you and others are more than welcome to call me HappyTokes, anytime. When I created @HappyTokes I didn’t fully process that people would start calling me that. HappyTokes was meant to speak to the way of life I saw that existed amongst of a community of existing ‘Happy-Tokers' and wished to speak on behalf of, as my struggles and strengths mirrored many of their own. HappyTokes soon became my brand and synonymously become a nickname or ‘alter-ego’ of sorts. I’m simply grateful that my brand identity is memorable to my audience. I’ve had the pleasure of traveling often this past year for promotional purposes, and exploration. It’s humbling how often I get approached with love and hugs upon recognition. “HappyTokes!” perks my ears no matter where we may be; my heart races and I can’t stop smiling. It blows me away every time. The tribe is filled with real people and they are EVERYWHERE. It’s really amazing to have the opportunity to formally shake a hand, make eye contact and introduce myself as Madison to these friends who may have only known me by HappyTokes prior.
BL: If you had to choose two words that describe you the most, what would they be?
HT: These kinds of questions always feel so tricky. It is so hard to pick just a few words to describe one’s self. Instead of boycotting the question entirely, I’ll offer two vocabulary words that I enjoy, which I feel describe me, though maybe not “the most”.
1. Heuristic. Simple Definition by Merriam-Webster :using experience to learn and improve
2. Catalyst. Simple Definition by Merriam-Webster :a person or event that quickly causes change or action
BL: What all do you do within the cannabis industry?
HT: The cannabis industry has welcomed me with open arms, I’m grateful to have professional experience in many realms within the industry: I work for a publication called Culture Magazine where I’m responsible for regionally focused, strain, concentrate and edible reviews, published monthly. I’m delivered samples to photograph and write about according to provided notes from growers, or dispensaries. Additionally, I contribute to the publication with nationally distributed cannabis news articles, advocate highlights, artist highlights and patient highlights. I appreciate the opportunity to professionally interview many, regarding incredibly inspiring, informative, instrumental stories revolving around what is taking place in our community.
Culture is distributed nationally, by region, via print, and is available in lots of dispensaries and smoke shops across the country. Though individual articles and digital Flipbook of print is also easily accessible online at ireadculture.com. If rather, you’re mainly interested in viewing the content that I’ve contributed to Culture Magazine directly, you can view this Pinterest board > < where I regularly update links to content as it is published.
@HappyTokes has acted as a platform for Social Media Promotion for hundreds of brands and artists over the years. I’m thrilled to document products that I discover and genuinely love, alongside art from people I adore to share with my followers. I try to really put something extra into my promotional services by requesting thoughtful engagement and action in response to the provided content. Many leaders amongst this community have recognized that my posts are an opportunity to engage with and be heard by brands they love. Not only do I reward my followers, but the brands and artists I work with reward the natural leaders within this community too.
Though maintaining accounts for others is outside my realm of interest with all that I have going on, I still am beyond excited to assist friends in and outside of this industry by offering consultations regarding Social Media Strategy. After an assessment of current platforms being utilized and desired goals to be achieved, I recommend insightful strategy and provide tools to implement said strategy. It’s amazing how fresh insight and perspective can help existing successful brands maintain a forward momentum with the ways they engage with their audiences. // Contact via HappyTokesTribe@gmail.com
Cannasmack co-branded with me, adding @HappyTokes to the label of the Peach flavor that I selected to be included in their line of Hemp Infused Lip Balms. I feel really connected to this brand and the incredible women behind it, so I offered myself in pretty much any way that seemed fit. Whether it be attending exciting events to vend product and spread brand awareness, pitching product to wholesale and distributor accounts, interviews with press and beyond.
I offer my copywriting services to brands and artists within the cannabis community; writing content for blog posts or press releases. It’s such an honor to have the privilege to assist others in telling their stories.
With @HappyTokes and the @HappyTokesTribe, I’ve created a community that acts as a safe-place for cannabis consumers, their friends and family. We have positive and productive conversations about cannabis, varying forms of consumption methods and benefits; providing motivation to conquer physical and invisible ailments. These conversations are igniting action and change within the lives of so many. Talking about cannabis with your loved ones shouldn’t be a scary thing. This plant has legitimate medicinal benefits for so many humans who are overcoming such a wide variety of symptoms associated to their individual diagnosis.
BL: You have a great way of spreading positivity. :) A simple search on Google of "Happy Tokes Tribe" will show just that. However, can YOU tell us about the #HappyTokesTribe and why it was started?
HT: The HappyTokesTribe might sound like some sort of self-absorbed fan-club, but I assure you it is far from that. My ultimate goal with HappyTokes is to help other people tell their stories in positive and inspirational light. The @HappyTokesTribe page was created just over a year ago, when I realized that the platform @HappyTokes couldn’t possibly share all of the content that spoke for the incredible interactions that were happening within the community. It’s important to me that the real people who make this community what it is, not only get acknowledged, but have a place to easily connect with others who have had similar positive experiences with the community. I’ve been sending out snail mail “#HappyMail” since the first days of @HappyTokes -- Hand written letters of thanks, stickers, handmade treats and such. Before long, branded items were regularly contributed to me for promotional purposes. Instead of keeping everything I chose early on to give it away to the people who go above and beyond with their interactions within the community. People posting photos of their mail for me to see they got it, and I use @HappyTokesTribe to #Repost their content; I wanted to make sure everyone else could soak up the good vibes that are being spread.
As it’s developed rapidly over this past year, the natural concept behind the #HappyTokesTribe is to have an ever-growing support system filled with talented and wise individuals setting positive examples of how to talk about cannabis and interact on social media; with kind gestures of varying magnitudes, a chain reaction has surely begun and good vibes are spreading like wildfire. There are often incredible opportunities that I am unable to fulfill myself, and I’m proud to say that my community has stepped in on countless occasions, filling roles that were both volunteered and compensated.
When asked what I wanted to be when I was growing up, I knew I wanted to ‘help people’ and I had specific interests, but there were always so many that I couldn't choose just one thing. With the @HappyTokesTribe by my side, I feel like we can collaboratively accomplish everything I’ve ever dreamed… and then some!
BL: How does someone get involved in the Tribe?
HT: Getting involved in this community is easy!
Many start interactions by liking posts on @HappyTokes or @HappyTokesTribe, leaving extra emoji love, and responding thoughtfully to captions that engage discussion.
I often encourage my followers to interact with one another by responding to other people’s comments. Making friends is as easy as saying “Hi there! I like this about you / what you said. We have these things in common. Want to be friends? I’d love to keep in touch.” The @HappyTokes & @HappyTokesTribe community has so much positive energy with like minded souls looking to conquer their battles alongside friends.
I love to repost content on @HappyTokesTribe that shows off tribe members who are interacting with artists and brands they found through the community. Creative product shots and well lit selfies including art, apparel or products from someone in the community is a great way to be featured. A single tube of @Cannasmack Hemp Infused Lip Balm (I recommend @HappyTokes limited edition Peach, Mango Kush or Blue Dream to start!) is only going to set you back $2.99, and it will truly be your new favorite. Stickers are available in my BigCartel shop starting at $1 each. Though many of these sets sell out rather quickly so it's important to catch the drops when they’re hot! - The list of brands that are involved with the tribe runs deep.
Natural leaders amongst the tribe often show their warm and welcoming colors by reaching out to others to engage in the HappyMail trend I’ve strongly encouraged, by setting example after example in hopes that others would follow. New friends in the tribe show off that they’ve connected further by sending letters to one another on their own. They typically include treats or stickers from @HappyTokes and tag the #HappyTokesTribe in their posts declaring they’ve received their mail.
If you live in a medically or recreationally legal state, join in on our never-ending #HappyTokesSesh, in aim to normalize the visual of our medication rituals. Please try to educate others about your relationship with cannabis when sharing these posts.
Lightweight donations to my HappyMail program are always welcomed and a great way to get involved in the tribe. One of the most common contributions is branded stickers! (Highly recommend the quality and customer service from @BongStickers; Gloss Vinyls - Code: HappyTokes for 10% off.)
BL: You hosted a scavenger hunt? What was it like? Hosting any more?!
HT: Ha! Yes. So happy you bring this up, such great timing too! At the end of the year last year, I organized a scavenger hunt on Instagram that navigated hundreds of participants through 25+ Instagram accounts over the course of a weekend. Users were given verbal and visual clues which directed them to dig and engage with old posts on pages of brands and artists featured, where they would eventually discover the answer to their clue. In the end, @LynSweetArt was the first person to send a completed list with all the correct answers won a prize package worth over $2200 retail. A plethora of runner up prizes were also given away. The purpose of the scavenger hunt was to go beyond rewarding followers for their engagement; the structure of the game set examples for proper navigation and interaction techniques. I received many thank-you’s post hunt, from participants who “learned how to use Instagram properly” because of the structure of my “game”.
ALL ARE WELCOME TO JOIN US FOR THE FUN THIS YEAR! You do not have to be active within the community already… this is a great introduction point! Starting December 30th, carrying through until January 2nd 2017! Players will be navigating through some of my favorite content on Instagram to win a grand prize or runner up prizes such as:
- 24k gold rolling papers from @shinepapers
- Accessories from @missmaryjaneco
- Rolling papers and accessories by @futurolausa
- Hemp Infused Lip Balm by @cannasmack
- Natural jewelry from friends at @thirdeyepinecones
- Handmade cannabis clutch by @snapdragonstyle
- @MachtaNow from our friends at @buddhateas
- Accessories from @moodmats
- Custom portrait by @planetcree
- @magicalbutter machine
- Grinder scale technology by @thegrale
- Rolling Kit by @str8brand
- The Nuggy Smoke’s Tool by @nugtools
- Borosilicate Glass Jewelry @gibbonsglass
- Borosilicate Glass accessories by @friskelglass
- Jewelry from @highsocietycollection
- Freezable glitter-filled bowls by @glitterpipes
- Vape Kit from @stagvaporco
- Borosilicate creation from @jasongordon315
- Stickers and goodies from @medicalpandas
- Apparel designed and printed by the lovely @braincandyink
- Aromatic wonders from @goodmedicinebeautylab
- Borosilicate glass creation from @xlbglass
- Art and stickers from @spo0kygirlart
- Borosilicate glass creation from @senoih
- Print from one of my favorite street artists @atomiko
…and even more!
BL: When did you become "Happy Tokes" and how has Instagram helped spread your message?
HT: The HappyTokes account was created just over three years ago. I have grown so much in front of and alongside my audience. I’m grateful for the platform that Instagram is as a tool. I have to gush because I truly adore the varied functionalities and regular updates that Instagram provides, allowing me to engage with my community in new and more efficient ways. I use hashtags to organize my content in albums, so followers can come back to older content to view again or share with family, friends, employers and teachers. For instance: #HappyTokesTribeTalks is used to organize my content where there is an incredible discussion taking place in the comment sections. Read these threads from top to bottom to get to know our community better. Feel free to respond to someone else’s comment, no matter how old it may be. I assure you they will appreciate your recognition. #WordsofHappy will lead you to posts with captions that have inspirational bits of Happy, typically written by me. #LiveFreeHappyTokes shows off lots of my medication sessions, mainly featuring @JasonGordon315’s rigs. #HappyTokesSesh features content from myself and a variety of friends in the tribe who much like myself, aim to normalize the visual of their medication rituals.
I’ve been able to successfully bring hundreds of people at a time over to another platform such as Spotify, WordPress, YouTube, or an outside affiliate link within 24 hours, to engage with me in a way other than what Instagram has to offer. Its awesome to see that people come back to Instagram to share their thoughts with me about content on other platforms, as they know it's most likely to be seen there.
I love the Instagram story function because it allows me to share adventures or updates with impermanence to my feed. It’s amazing to see the number of people watching jump from 300 to over 3000, within a few hours on any given day. I’m also quite looking forward to the LIVE story function to kick in for me. I’ve already been strategizing exciting ways to make positive examples of how to use that feature.
It would be super awesome to be verified officially by the platform. I know that both myself and my most engaged followers are using this platform incredibly responsibly, strategically engaging and connecting for the betterment of themselves and their communities.
Prime example scenario: Tribe members @Aurorahashhippie and her son Landon, 5 year old Epilepsy warrior reached out to share their story. Landon had an upcoming hospital stay and birthday, so mom asked if we could gather some notes filled with good vibes from the tribe to read to him while in the hospital. I used Instagram’s live story function to announce the opportunity to write a letter to Landon and the messages rolled in. I hand wrote the individual messages on colorful paper and delivered my love. While collecting messages I received a message from @ganjasmokinggypsysoul420 who is a mother of four. She sent me a DM and told me that she saw my post about Landon and decided to sit down with her four children (Alexis Lee 12, Aylissa Aylana 11, Athan Blaze 8, and Ayla Penelope 3) to talk about epilepsy and watch a few videos of children who have epilepsy, and also children being treated by cannabis. Her children were incredibly empathetic and wanted to help in any way they could. Three year old Ayla Penelope gifted her doggie “Max” to fellow young tribe member, Landon. Landon also received mail from several other leaders in the tribe.
BL: We see you like to dab. What advice do you have for novice dabbers out there? :)
HT: The temperature at which you take your dab is very important. Many think they need to touch their medicine to a red-hot nail; that’s just going to burn your throat and lungs. If you’re using a Quartz nail/banger, you’ll want to heat it with a butane torch until it’s red hot, but then WAIT for it to cool back down from anywhere between 0:30-1:30 depending on the thickness of the Quartz. If you’re using an E-nail, the desired temperature will vary based on the nail and the rig it is attached to but a range of 560 degrees to 650 degrees is probably a good place to start. Experiment dabbing with an even lower temperature; low temperature dabs are a great way to taste the terpene profile of your medication.
BL: We know you really like these two strains: Cannatonic & Trap Star Cookies, but if you could only choose one.. which is it and why?
HT: Wow! Cool that you pulled these strains that I’ve mentioned in my posts. Of Cannatonic and TrapStarCookies, I’d have to pick the TrapStarCookies. Though, I’m not sure if the original genetics of that strain still exist. I would choose it based on its ability to consistently stimulate an appetite. For that gift, I am so incredibly grateful.
Hands Down, my favorite strain for flavor and effect, would have to be Joplin. If you ever have the opportunity to experience this incredible @Loyalty_Extracts strain in concentrated form, whether it’s solo or combined in extraction with “White Widow”, stock up! You won’t be disappointed.
BL: Where can people keep up with you?
Connect with @Happytokes
Connect Through Facebook
reviews - Published with Culture Magazine
Join the Happy Tokes Tribe
Read The Happy Tokes Blog
Drops are typically limited and go quick!
BL: What are you most grateful for today?
HT: I am grateful for all of the incredible souls who make such effort to show they care about myself and see the pure intention behind the gathering of this community, for those who serve as inspiration from afar, and for every obstacle I have the opportunity to overcome.
Code “HappyTokes” will offer a range of generous discounts from the following:
@Cannasmack (10%), @FuturolaUSA (10%), @BongStickers (10%), @StagVaporCo (15%), @MagicalButter ($30 off), @GreenHouseHemp (10%), @SnapDragonStyle (20%), @BillowbyCo (15%), @ItalHempWick (15%)
If you'd like to see @HappyTokes visit and vend in a city near you, reach out to @Cannasmack and tell them which local annual events are most popular. Cannasmack is a family-friendly product; non-psychoactive.