Just because marijuana is now legally available in many states doesn’t mean it will sell itself. Dispensaries and retailers must worry about regulatory, banking, distribution, taxation, and insurance issues. Though you may be in a market where product demand is already apparent, you unfortunately compete with the black market along with other retailers selling the same goods. To remain successful, it is important to build a loyal customer base.
According to a survey by the Brightfield group of over 500 medicinal users or adult consumers in recreationally legal states, roughly one-third of those are admittedly very loyal to their dispensaries, using only one service or store within the previous year.
Here are a few tips to make sure you are retaining a loyal base of customers.
Quality is Paramount
Based on the same survey by the Brightfield Group, over a third of marijuana users indicated the most important aspect of the products they consume is that they are high-quality. The convenience of the dispensary’s location weighed on their decision as well.
Consumers studied also indicated they are more willing to pay for products that won’t negatively affect their health, like organic products that can be safely consumed. The study showed that secondary concerns were aspects like brand recognition and discretion.
Be Active in the Community
The cannabis community tends to be tight-knit, so if you can provide a positive, healthy, community vibe at your location, it will be easier for you to retain customers.
Some tips to create a sense of community include:
- Host events at your retail location.
- Utilize social media to consistently engage with your existing customers and to reach out to new clients.
- Share interesting and interactive content online.
Become A Reliable Expert
Customers will be more loyal if they know they can come to you with questions and trust that you will always provide accurate, reliable information. If you position yourself as an expert in the field of cannabis and can provide the answers and guidance when needed, the result will be a strong following of consumers that are loyal.
Provide the Best Service
Make sure the service you offer is top-shelf. You could offer the best prices on the best quality products in town but that doesn’t matter at all if your service doesn’t match. Ensure you hire friendly and knowledgeable budtenders, take time to get to know each one of your customers, and understand the vast variety of your consumer’s needs.
Stay Top of Mind
It is important that the relationship you have with your customers is more than just transactional. An average person is shown 4,000 ads daily, and if you’re not consistently within those 4,000, you could be losing your customer base to competitors.
Communication via text message and emails are two effective methods to get the word out to your loyalty members. Just be sure to abide by both laws and best practices. By law, text message communication requires a physical opt-in. Best practices say you shouldn’t spam your customers with messages all day, else your list will dwindle from opt-outs.
Just make sure you are talking to your customers in the communication you send, not spamming them. You can alert your customer base about new products, changes to store operations, and promotions on products you know they’ll like.