By Jeffrey Harris, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, springbig.
Financial predictions about the cannabis market have been exciting analysts for some time as marijuana becomes more mainstream. Consider the facts: As of 2018, there were already 12 cannabis companies with stock market value worth more than $1 billion; One of the first celebrity-chef darlings, Martha Stweart, has signed a deal to market CBD; The company behind Budweiser has invested in a venture to research cannabis-infused beverages.
Cannabis is becoming big business, yet cannabis retailers face steep challenges when it comes to marketing products. Federal and state regulations and strict social media platform guidelines make advertising in the traditional sense virtually impossible for dispensaries and cannabis companies. This has forced cannabis retailers to change their approach to target the right consumers since Google, Facebook, geographic limitations and age restrictions prohibit traditional advertising. Marketing and email acquisition strategies used by retailers like Apple, Target and Expedia do not apply to the cannabis industry.
Marketing cannabis takes ingenuity to work around rules and not land in hot water with regulators – but it can be done. Content and thought-leadership is one way for dispensaries to better their brand, but it takes a lot of time to develop and execute articles, blogs or podcasts about the subject. Most dispensary retailers don’t have the time to create marketing campaigns while tip-toeing around regulations.
The solution? Dispensaries should be spending more time looking inward rather than outward.
Customers drive revenue, and it costs less to sell to existing customers than acquire …