To truly know your customer, is to truly know your business
When it comes to deciding how to best stock your store and what products to have on-hand in your dispensary’s inventory, what products are best to choose depends on your store’s target demographic.
Who Are They Really?
Your target demographic is your main “audience” or group of customers that you want to appeal and cater to. Different demographics prefer different strains, goods, and trends when it comes to cannabis, so spending time getting to know consumers’ wants and needs will ultimately pay off. Before knowing what your target demographic wants, however, you must first identify who belongs to that group. Are you trying to reach a more “mature” crowd or a younger audience that includes Millennials? Do you want your retail cannabis store to appeal to eco-minded individuals, or those wishing to live a more luxurious and glamorous lifestyle? Besides just driving the design of your dispensary, figuring out the answers to these critical questions will begin to offer insight into the types of cannabis and cannabis products you’ll need to stock your store with. Alternatively, if you know what type of product your brand wants to focus on selling most, such as concentrates or edibles, you can use that plan to help steer your company towards marketing to the right demographic. Concentrates may not be for the older crowd, but edibles are a fast favorite among senior citizens. If you’ve identified your cannabusiness’ strengths early on, you can use them as a jumping off point to help you decide what product lines or brands would be best to carry in your dispensary to have the widest appeal to your customers.
Once you’ve identified your target demographic, how do you know which products are going to be most appealing to that particular audience? Start by spending some time brainstorming characteristics that most members of that demographic share overall. If you’re looking to target the “green”, environmentally-minded crowd, you know that individuals who identify as part of this group typically like promoting sustainable brands and buying products that were made with recycled material. With that in mind, focus on picking out cannabis products that are made using eco-friendly business practices, such as placing goods into sustainable packaging. If you’re trying to appeal to the senior citizen or veteran crowd, consider what it is about cannabis draws this group of customers in. Maybe they are using cannabis or cannabis-infused products to manage pain. Many older people also use cannabis in a variety of forms to help with many different ailments, from glaucoma to Alzheimer’s. Keep in mind that many are living on a fixed income, and so are perhaps more price-conscious than other groups. Offering products that offer the most value for their price is important. Choosing items rich in CBD would also benefit this demographic, if customers are looking for a more effectual form of pain relief. Younger people are drawn to different types of products. Technology-driven and so-called “smart” smoking devices or accessories often catch Millennials’ eyes. So do more trendy, “fad”-like products. Keeping an eye on what goes in and out of popularity among the younger crowd is imperative, as brand loyalty and preferences can quickly shift and change among this group.
Products Based on Locale
Most likely, one of your target demographic is adults in your dispensary’s local area or neighborhood. How do you get your closest customers to remain loyal? Stock your store with items cultivated, made or distributed by a local company. People appreciate the chance to support their local small businesses when given the chance. Choosing to support your community and keeping money in the area goes a long way in the eyes of the locals. If your retail store is based in Los Angeles, support local brands and businesses from L.A. and you’ll definitely appeal to shoppers there.
Keep Your Eye on Social Media
Oftentimes, online reviews and interactions with your customers on social media will help more accurately inform you about your customers really want. Through review and commenting features, you can hear straight from your target audience what they think about current products you’re carrying or products you didn’t have in stock that they wanted to buy. Keep an ear to the ground at all times to find out what your customers are truly demanding.
Continue to Evolve
One simple rule in the cannabis industry that brands must follow in order to survive is never to stop innovating and evolving. Over time, as your company becomes more established and experienced, you will be able to better cater to your target demographic’s wants and needs. Once you’ve been operating for awhile, you’ll be able to use projections based on previous years to determine your inventory size and stock. Every month, more and more different cannabis products are hitting the legal market. Your work is never done when it comes to choosing which new products to stock your store with, but getting to know your target market is the best place to start. Your individual customers offer the best insight into which new products may become best-sellers, helping you always continue learning and evolving as a business.