The cannabis industry is booming, especially now as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. A lot of people are turning to marijuana as a way to reduce anxiety, as a sleep aid, and some are even using medical marijuana to treat conditions such as chronic pain, epilepsy, MS, and others.
Today, medical cannabis is legal in 36 US states, and CBD has been legalized on a federal level as a result of the 2018 Farm Bill (the products need to contain less than 0.3% THC in order to be eligible for the legal CBD market). That enabled the growth in popularity of various CBD products, and even CVS and Walgreens started selling mostly topical CBD products.
On the other hand, recreational use of marijuana has been legalized in countries like Colorado, Illinois, Nevada, and others. Recently, New York became the 15th state to legalize cannabis, and more are sure to follow.
Cannabis users vape, consume edibles, use cannabutter for cooking and baking, apply topicals, and/or smoke weed. Since the cannabis plant has such varied use, a lot of newgrowers enter the cannabis industry, and wonder how to grow their customer base. Read on to find out how you can develop your cannabis business and acquire new customers.
A 2020 research done by the Trimbos Institute in Utrecht Netherlands, reviewed the connection between cannabis use and the coronavirus pandemic. According to the research, 41.3% of all respondents increased their cannabis use since the lockdown measures, 49.4% used it similar to before, 6.6% used it less often, and 2.8% stopped (temporarily).
This study concluded that users increased cannabis consumption both in frequency and in quantity during the lockdown. The recommendations included the importance of monitoring trends in cannabis use, as well as providing more information to potential or existing users in order to support cessation and reduce the side effects that come from long-term cannabis use.
How to Increase Your Cannabis Customer Base?
Acquiring new customers is challenging for every industry, especially for the cannabis industry which is a highly competitive one. New brands and cannabis products emerge every day, and each one is fighting to maintain and increase their customer base. The only way that they can succeed in the cannabis business is by differentiating themselves from other brands, and below you’ll find out how you can do that for your business.
Identify Your Target Audience
Understanding your customer profile is essential to increasing your customer base. To achieve new customers and grow your cannabis business, you need to market to your target audience.
Create buyer personas based on sales, advertisement clicks, website visits, and likes, so you can create a personalized experience for your potential customers and ease their path to purchase.
For example, the cannabis market offers an abundance of cannabis strains, some of them Sativa, some Indica, and also hybrid varieties. Moreover, products are available in many forms, THC-based, CBD-based, or a combination of both, found as dry flowers, tinctures, concentrates, edibles, or others. Finally, you have a variety of cannabis consumption devices including joints, vapes, bongs, and more.
All of this information can be confusing for potential new customers, so it’s your job to determine which products are profitable and popular among consumers, and focus on marketing those to your targeted buyer persona.
Use Digital Marketing and Social Media
An interview on VICE titled “A college drug dealer explains why Snapchat is so great for selling weed,” gave inside information on how social media platforms can be useful for increasing your customer base.
Social media marketing is key for getting to the younger demographic who can’t be reached through traditional media channels. It ensures that your ads will reach a massive audience, and help you establish a well-known brand in the process.
The advantage of social media marketing is the ability to target potential consumers and provide them with customized ads based on location and consumer attributes. This also enables you to measure the results, while spending less money on overall marketing, since you’re only investing in advertising that’s giving you results.
Create a Website that Provides Useful and Interesting Information
As a result of the legalization of cannabis in some states in the US, more and more marijuana dispensaries appear on the market. By going to their local dispensary, cannabis users can get information directly from the budtender selling weed. And with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, dispensaries have increased their delivery services, curbside pick-up, and other services to satisfy the needs of both medical marijuana and recreational users.
However, the prices at the dispensary are often higher, so creating a website for your brand is more important than ever.
Educating new customers is another great way to increase your customer base. Do this by creating a designated website where you’ll write current, factual, and verified data on cannabis in order to attract potential customers. You can not only target popular misconceptions about cannabis, but also educate both cannabis users and non-users on the most current legalization laws, which will help you attract newbies and people who have tried cannabis only a handful of times.
Finally, educational branding will enable potential customers to decide which products are the best for them based on what they’re searching for in a particular product.
Use SEO and Data Analysis
As we’ve mentioned above, data analysis will enable you to find out what is driving your customer to purchase your product. Understanding your customers’ needs and what techniques have worked for selling your products in the past is essential to building lookalike models to acquire new customers. This type of data will enable you to see how your brand is perceived and how you can further improve your customer acquisition process.
On the other hand, search engine optimization (SEO) will enable you to improve the quality and quantity of your website traffic, as well as increase the exposure of your brand through organic search results. Both SEO and data analysis are crucial for growing your brand and tailoring your products to the needs and interests of the customers.
To Sum It Up
The key to increasing the number of weed customers in this day and age is tracking the digital moves of consumers and building a brand that’s aligned with the view of a national audience, instead of only a small fragment of the market.
The first step to increasing your customer base is identifying your target audience and your ideal customer who will be the focus of your brand. Next, you need to create your own website which will not only market your brand but also provide useful information to potential customers. Your brand can also be promoted through various social media channels which will provide you with data analysis about how well you’re doing. And finally, you can use the acquired data to improve your marketing strategy in the future.
The cannabis industry is evolving and new cannabis products appear on the market daily, so it’s important that you stay informed about new trends, as well as separate yourself from other brands.