How to Sell to Dispensaries Using Marijuana Business Data: Finding What You Need
Finding the right data is often confusing and time-consuming. If you are new to the industry, it can be even harder than usual to get the data you need to aid your sales efforts. You can Google all day and never find what you need due to limited access and confusion over the way different states record and present marijuana business data to the public.
In this installment, we’ll go over some the data sources out there and help you frame the data that REALLY matters.
Problem: There is a Lot of Data
Marijuana business data is everywhere. It is spread across state websites, social media, news websites, and private organizational websites, as well. With so much data, it is hard to discern between which data is valuable and which should be ignored.
Cannabis consumer information is often based on recent purchases. This type of data is only effective for a short span of time and is hard to procure. Additionally, the market shifts quickly making it even harder to anticipate future consumers or plan and execute effective long-term sales strategies.
News can provide sales teams with valuable data that is good for short-term sales strategies. These outlets are constantly talking about the latest and greatest movement in the cannabis industry. A drawback of utilizing news for data purposes is that collecting such data is difficult and requires daily monitoring and processing.
Business groups and associations are a great place to find privately held lists of directories. Some are more descriptive than others. This data is often input by members of the group or association and can be error-prone or deceptive to avoid undue contact.
Social media is full of hashtags and opinions, and, because it is social media, you are getting the real-time pulse of the marketplace. It is often hard to establish trends within this opinion-based atmosphere and this data requires a lot of attention and time to analyze. In the process of taking the necessary time to find and review all of the relevant data, it is easy to get confused.
So, What Marijuana Business Data Really Matters When You Sell to Dispensaries?
There are several data points to consider but many are so obvious that they often get overlooked. Consider the following:
What is the address and contact information?
What type of dispensary are you dealing with?
What do the location and facility look like?
Does the neighborhood around the dispensary support walk-in traffic?
How does the dispensary showcase products?
What and how many products does the dispensary have?
Is the population density of this location high enough to ensure volume sales?
Who are the consumers who surround the dispensary?
A salesperson with this data in-hand is far more prepared to engage in selling to a particular dispensary. Knowing how your brand and product fits into a dispensary makes your offering unique and appealing. Being able to discuss the relevant information in an intelligent manner with a dispensary representative puts you head and shoulders above the others competing for the business. Sales efforts become much easier when a salesperson crafts a pitch that fits the unique needs of the dispensary.
Tourism Isn’t the Future
At the beginning of legalization, cannabis tourism helped spur rapid industry growth. Many thought that this trend would continue much longer than it has. With other states now legalizing cannabis, the tourism boom has begun to wane. Comparatively speaking, industry trends appear to be following the same model as a coffee shop or local grocery store: consumers tend to stay close to home when venturing out to purchase essential goods and services. Consumers will most likely demonstrate this same behavior when using and selecting preferred dispensaries in the future.
Meet the Neighbors
Understanding how the neighborhood around a dispensary influences products and services offered is an important first step. The needs of the consumers in the area should be of primary interest. Make sure you know the “ins and outs” of their lifestyles and their needs. Understanding how their earnings, education, spending, and health issues influence these consumers is paramount.
Understand Pricing in Relationship to Location
Discounting is an option but it shouldn’t necessarily be the first solution to consider. Making sure your pricing is in line with the particular consumers in a dispensary’s area is important. If you clearly understand the consumers in the neighborhood, then you can create brand loyalty that offsets cheap and reduced priced products.
Know the lay of the Land
You need to visually assess the market in context to create the sales plan that best suits your organization. Understanding the influences dispensaries have on each other and the neighborhood surrounding them is very important. Seeing how traffic flows and the way that other businesses influence traffic inbound to a dispensary will make planning easier and sales activities more efficient – the next article in this series, “See the Market”, will show you how to do just that.