Marijuana has a long and complex history.
The substance seems more fashionable than ever being legalized for recreational uses in some jurisdictions and for medical uses in others.
The best way to market your dispensary is to get in front of potential customers.
It sounds simple, but it's actually quite complicated.
Read our entire article below to learn the best methods.
Startups Are Being Born
Startups are a significant feature of the medical cannabis landscape in California.
Such is demonstrated by the results of Poseidon Asset Management, an investment fund - whose portfolio, more volatile than normal is based on companies dedicated to the cannabis industry.
The ideas associated with the fund are diverse, from companies that manufacture hydroponic lamps or vaporizers to harvesting.
With the latest technology or social networks such as Weedist, self-described as "the community of cannabis connoisseurs".
How Should I Market My Cannabis Dispensary?
The cannabis market is becoming increasingly complex.
Apart from the political, social and cultural phenomena, entrepreneurs face new challenges such as:
- new competitors
- new regulations
- consumers are more informed
- access to information is instantaneous
- letting customers know your dispensary is safe
Marketing is a process that seeks to provoke the interaction of buyers and sellers in the exchange of goods or services for mutual benefit.
Before starting a marketing plan for a cannabis dispensary you must analyze your company and its environment.
Through the SWOT analysis (Strength, Opportunities, Weaknesses and Threats) we can have a better internal and external knowledge of the company.
The analysis helps identify business areas with greater opportunities, visualize the use of strengths to circumvent threats and better seize opportunities while allowing us to know our weaknesses in order to manage them properly.
The marketing plan is a written document with actions aimed at achieving the marketing objectives of a company.
The marketing plan covers 4 main areas called the four P’s of the marketing: Product, Price, Place and Promotion.
Product: It is crucial to define the product to know who you are competing with and to design strategies around it.
Many think Starbucks sells coffee. In effect it sells coffee, but beyond that product, Starbucks sells atmosphere, prestige and status.
If Starbucks limited the definition of its product to simply "coffee," we would never have enjoyed such pleasant and comfortable places to share and even hold business meetings.
Price: What will be my pricing strategy?
It is common to make a mistake when setting prices by taking only the cost of production as a reference.
We also have to think about the value our product represents for our customers.
In the previous strategy, we must consider references such as our costs, and sales expectations (how we are vs. how they perceive us).
Place or distribution: Here the marketer seeks to identify our customers, where they are, where they live and where they buy.
Proper selection of the site or location of the dispensary can mean the difference between success and failure.
That is why the location is a very important piece of a marketing strategy for cannabis dispensaries.
Another factor that we have to keep in mind is how to make our product reach our customers.
We can go directly to the consumer, to work with distributors, retailers, among the many options available in the market today.
In order to have a good business location it is necessary to know two fundamental aspects: the demographic and the psychographic.
The first is based on marital status, age, income level, gender, race, and so on.
The second is based on preferences, attitudes and lifestyles.
Promotion: Promotion is meant to inform people that your product exists.
People will buy things they have heard of.
You have to let people know that there is a cannabis dispensary near them.
Make them aware that your company has that product or service they want.
The means to communicate these elements are increasingly varied with the options offered on the internet.
Tips To Use Social Media
- Engage your audience - ask questions, make comments, etc.
- Don't just promote yourself - give useful news, industry tips, etc.
- Create YouTube channel - Google owns YouTube and it has 100's of millions of users
- Use Instagram - with over 600 million users IG is a force
- Create a pinterest board - people live images and pinterest does to
- Personalize your content - be yourself, show your picture, etc.
- Be sure to get on Weedmaps.com and Yelp.com
- Of course build a FB page
The Use of The Smartphone
Smartphones are taking part in the popularity of cannabis, and the markets already have all kinds of solutions that try to help users make the most of it.
The cannabis apps for iOS and Android are abundant, but we could name examples like Weed Maps - to find distributors of marijuana - or Leafly, which provides mobile applications for iOS and Android.
We also have community-oriented social networks related to the cultivation and consumption of cannabis.
Mass Roots is one of the best examples - there is also an application for iOS and Android, and in fact this community -oriented primarily to the medical community- recently received an investment of $150,000 from the Arc View Group.
Such solutions also reach the business world: MJ Freeway is a company that according to its managers is directed to any entrepreneur in this segment of the market that can "run a successful cannabis business."
This company provides services from the monitoring and traceability of cannabis to all the needs of computer services for producers, growers, manufacturers, groups, clubs, shops, dispensers or, of course, vendors.
The same company provides MJ Mobile, a mobile application that manages all those operations available in this simple business solution.
The influence of the big companies in the cannabis market has also been very relevant, for example Apple had to recognize the relevance of this market and took a 180 degree turn in its policy of approval of mobile applications related to this field.
Apple approved MassRoots – only for the states in which cannabis is legal - while the specific catalog of tools on Google Play is already more than decent as revealed by a simple search.
Take advantage of these marketing tools when opening your cannabis dispensary.