159: Canna-tech: Marketing in a “Budding” Industry
A major CRM company, Springbig, is blazing a trail. They’ve become a go-to provider in the industry they focus on, they’ve got a 98% customer retention rate, and have their entire staff supporting a brand purpose: Help retailers accomplish their goals, every day. On this episode, co-founder and CEO Jeffrey Harris explains how they managed to come into a new industry and quickly establish themselves as key players. The kicker? The area that Springbig pivoted to focus on is the rapidly flowering, marijuana dispensary industry.
The cannabis tech industry—think martech, but specifically for cannabis companies—is booming. Updated legislature and an overall cultural shift in perception are two especially large factors in this market’s rapid growth, and as such, a massive new marketplace is opening up, meaning companies have huge opportunities, but need to move quick. Springbig recognized this and set to work identifying and understanding their target. Now, they’re sought out at industry conferences, expanding their vast clientele, and helping dispensaries optimize customer messaging with advanced metrics—After 4 visits, Springbig can actually predict with 90% accuracy what time a dispensary’s customers will have their 5th visit!
Tune in to this week’s episode to hear more about their rapid ascent in dispensary circles, their approach to quickly gaining an accurate understanding of the market, how they use marketing to foster loyalty, and more. Plus, take a look at a couple highlights below:
So, you made the decision to boldly commit to one, new-ish vertical market. How’d you approach it?
When we got into it, we didn’t realize what pent-up demand there was in the space for a service like ours. When we got into the space, there was one competitor that had gotten in before us and they were doing very well. And they were they were well-known. We were basically the other guys. We’re now at the point where there’s probably three other players besides us doing similar things in this space, in this vertical. And we probably are the most well-known now and probably have the most customers. You know, partly because we really delved into it. We really got to understand not only the general market, but the state-by-state market, because every state has its own market in this industry. You really have to continue and commit to those cycles of learning to try to get to a place where you can accelerate your success
Were there some things that you did to help market your organization that were, in retrospect, particularly effective?
Well, it’s an industry now, but when we got into it about three years ago, I would call it more of a community than an industry. When there’s this cause going on, there’s a community built around that cause. And where does a community meet and get together? In person, at conferences. In other industries that I’ve participated in, you go to a conference and you may see the marketing managers, or the marketing directors of these companies. In cannabis, the owners were there. All of them. That was where we wanted to spend the most dollars and the most time. So, we basically brought people onboard, and walked through those conferences. We were advertising beforehand to let people know we were there, we were trying to do everything that we could to get the exposure that we needed. This past year, just to fast forward about a year and a half, at the big conference in Las Vegas—it’s called MJ BizCon—we finally had people seeking us out. Coming over like “Oh, I was looking for you guys.”
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