As countries are establishing their economic presence in states like Colorado and Nevada, dispensaries can no longer depend on just the product. The attitude, which has even been espoused as a motto for a lot of collectives, is that the “product sells itself.”
As though the adage may be true as the plant is old, it cannot outsell itself by itself. For cannabis dispensaries to outsell and outlast others, it needs to set a melody or a tune on what the patient can expect from the dispensary services.
As the United States is about to enter the Green Age of economics, we can expect that new subcultures will occur along with the product. Dispensaries will now have to start contending with an open market, a more laissez faire attitude that cannabis has ever had in the states. With no longer a chain on the market, California has, come this January, let free all 21 year and ups free reign among cannabis dispensaries as states like Colorado and Nevada have done before them.
For those who get in the game early, they play high-risk and high-reward. Where they hiccup or miss, others will capitalize. This fast-moving, wild market will be a warm of munition for some retailers. Though some may will survive in the mean time with an overall strong market, retailers will miss to hit or surpass their dividends when they fail to hold an audience to their service. For in this market, in order to rocket, the retailer must build and fight in a war of munitions. The higher than the fanbase, the more likely the retailers will outlast.
With this market ready to become chaotic in the coming years, the dispensaries and collectives that get first taste best need to find a hook to keep some loyal patients until the market smooths. And like any book, a business wins the attention with first experiences as writers do with the opening line.
It is the goal of any cannabis retailer to hold as many patients as possible while the wave of fads and gags hit the market. Though the wave will wipe some shops dry, it will overall be a fully-nourished and surging market.
A retailer must be able to present what kind of assurance they can give a patient. On the first go, the patient will be testing the quality, the price compared to quality, the consistency, and serviceability of the product. But before they can even test the product, they judge a retailer deeply not only on the decor that shows off the flower as fresh and crystallized, they also care about what kind of First Time Patient deals (FTP) they can get.
FTP deals, as trivial as it may seem, sets standards for what the patient can expect from the shop. Discounts on known distributors, like Cheeba Chew, gives credence that the retailer sells product outside from their shop, which can give confidence in the patient that the endgame of the retailer is to satisfy them.
FTP deals can also show the breadth of the shop’s menu and what it carries heavier more than the other. For example, if fifty-percent of the FTP deals are discounts on flower and the rest is for other products that include edibles, wax, and vapes, it’s safe to assume that the dispensary will have higher selection in flower.
The adverse is true as well: The smaller the deals and the less deals they offer, the smaller the selection as well as standard prices. In this case, the retailer does not create a mystique by having a wider selection of deals and the smaller deals does not attract or magnetize the patient to seek out the shop.
As it goes in today’s cannabis market, advertising is found on cannabis magazines or weedmaps; or in some form of abstraction of these. Regardless, on these platforms and publications, the way retailers advertise is by their FTP deals, which makes FTP deals the biggest instruments in marketing and advertising for cannabis.
Next to the color scheme and font type of the page, the only thing that will catch their eye are the deals and how they compare to others. When a patient can find two retailers that have deals on the same product from an outside distributor, again like Cheeba Chews, it gives reference for the patient on what prices are deals compared to other.
Although one retailer will be seen as having an more expensive price for said product, they will also reference the retailer if they offer other deals since they are a trusted reference. That is why it’s important for FTP deals to offer wide and varied discounts with trusted brand distributors, it gives a buoy of trust for the patient because it’s much easier to trust a retailer that carries a product that you trust as well.
The cannabis market will become more volatile before it settles. It’s ultimate path will be upwards but the guessing game of who and what, will do what and why and how, will keep investors panicking and frantic until they get a true juggernaut.
Though most would not want to admit, once cannabis is legalized fully, which it will be, it will be corporatized. There will be, in some ways, a monarchy of cannabis entrepreneurship, such as there is a Bill Gates of Computers and Mark Zuckerburg of Social Media.
This doesn’t mean smaller businesses cannot succeed. Plenty can. In fact, Zuckerburg and Gates may not be the best comparisons because their business does not deal in retail directly. For the most part, Microsoft deals in distribution, while that is one of many in the cannabis market.
No longer can cannabis salesman be the skateboard kid on the stoop, but a deal maker. For a retailer to be successful in this market, they must corner the presentation aspect of their business. And to do that, means to do some soul searching.
Or an inventory count, a history of sales, and cutout ad in the local magazine.