It’s hard to imagine what newbie customers must be thinking as they peruse retail cannabis menus these days. First, they must decode the categories—“flower,” “vape,” “extract”—and then wade through hundreds of products in each section, all described in esoteric canna-ese. The process is enough to induce severe mental fatigue. Luckily, there’s a product for that…somewhere on that damn menu.
For their part, cannabis brands are becoming more savvy about reaching out directly to customers with targeted marketing campaigns and loyalty programs heavily reliant on data collected, crunched, and analyzed with every new purchase.
While most other retail markets have decades of demographic data from which to draw, the cannabis industry has a much more limited view of its customer base, both old and new. A cottage industry of analyst firms has sprung up to satiate the demand for more data and insight into this rapidly evolving industry, and until brands better understand what products and effects their customers crave, the hunt for bigger, better datasets will continue. Along the way, companies will develop more accurate and detailed consumer profiles, and if things go according to plan, brand allegiances will start to translate into lifelong customers.
Digging up details
As brands begin interacting more directly with a growing number of consumers across the United States, their goal is to establish strong, long-term, mutually beneficial relationships. One of the most challenging aspects of this pursuit is anticipating what products will capture the interest of fickle, often underinformed shoppers. It’s no wonder brands have begun relying on focus groups, surveys, research studies, and data analytics to shed light on cannabis trends and consumer preferences. Third-party cannabis and CBD consumer data can help companies develop more effective media campaigns and ad targeting by revealing audiences’ current interests and predicting how those