Personalization in Cannabis Marketing: How to Get it Right and Why You Should Try


Personalization in Cannabis Marketing: How to Get it Right and Why You Should Try

If you’ve been using cannabis for a while, you probably tried lots of different profiles and consumption methods before you found what works best for you. Relieving backache and anxiety? Check. Falling asleep at your nephew’s 5th birthday party? Not the one. 

What and how we consume is so personal to each of us and as our choice increases, we’re looking for brands that acknowledge our individual needs. 

And it’s not just in the cannabis space; the modern consumer landscape demands relevancy. There are quintillion bytes of content created every day and we have more options to purchase than ever so our expectations are evolving. In fact, 71% of shoppers feel frustrated when their experience is impersonal. 

Recognizing that there’s nothing else that feels as personal to us as health care and wellness, how can we get started with a personalization strategy?

Take stock and set goals

Take stock of where you are now. What data do you collect? How well do you know your customers? Do you have any processes that currently facilitate personalization? 

Then think about where you want to go. What goals and objectives would you set for a program like this? How do you want your customer to feel? 

And consider all the ways you can better understand your customers. 

If you lean into first-party data and insights from the customers you already have, you can get granular in your personalized strategies, and create micro-segmented audiences (where you group small numbers of customers into extremely precise segments). You can give them the content they need and identify new people who will feel engaged by your brand. 

How does that work on a practical level? 

Surfside’s Jon Lowen told Forbes, “We suggest finding out why current consumers purchase your products or visit your store, then replicating that success by marketing to lookalikes and building out brand experiences tailored to unique brand differentiators.”

Think about how you can take action on the data you collect and how you could leverage it across each customer touchpoint. 

What does that look like? 

Loyalty programs
Rewards make customers stick with a brand. Making sure that the reward fits the person and their spending habits is an extra step to keep them coming back. 

Tailored unboxing experiences
A great personalized unboxing experience not only makes people feel special, it’s also highly sharable. Try adding a QR code that shows customers where their product was grown when scanned or even add a card with food or music pairing ideas. 

Personalized samples
After checking to make sure that you can offer free samples legally in your area, try offering personalized samples based on your customer’s previous purchases or demographic.

Send a segmentation email
Send a ‘get to know you’ email after someone signs up to your website to gauge their tastes and preferences. No need to ask more than two or three questions. Then you can start to segment your email lists. A watch out for this is that people can still be suspicious about sharing their cannabis habits, even in recreational states. Be friendly and light. 

Delivery options
For online shoppers, offer a few delivery options for people who are out at work all day and may not want to receive their package at the office, or who may want to use pickup point near their shop or pharmacy. Then remember their choice for next time. 

Reengagement emails
Set an email to go out a couple of weeks after your customer has made a purchase to ask for feedback, encourage a repurchase, or suggest similar products. Most mail providers don’t allow you to promote cannabis sales in an email but Sendlane, Moosend, Mailerlite all allow for personalization and are cannafriendly. 

Text updates
Most people are generally over getting a menu texted to them each week. But they do like to know where their package is, when their favorite product is back in stock, and how they can access tailored offers.

Embracing AI 

In a growing business, personalization can feel quite daunting. Automation is obviously the quickest and most expedient way to achieve some of these experiences, but can small businesses afford fancy AI? 

There are plenty of scalable email automation platforms that can help you get started with basic segmentation emails, automated thank you emails or prompts for feedback. 

If you’re serious about personalization, platforms like, Omniconvert, and Froomle can create adjustable modules on your website that show your website user personalized categories, gift ideas, or promotions. You could have a ‘recommended for you’ box that displays high THC strains for heavy users and a low-dose cannabis tea for the cannacurious. These types of platform are flexibly priced so smaller businesses with fewer data points can use a basic package.

The biggest benefit to starting AI as a small business is that they get better as they process more data, so you won’t be trying to retrofit these types of systems when your business scales up and you have tens of thousands of customers.