The legalized cannabis business in the U.S. has exploded and shows no signs of slowing down, as 11 states have fully legalized it for recreational and medical use and another 22 have legalized it for medical usage only. Retail sales of both medical and recreational marijuana will likely burn past $12 billion by the end of 2019. Some expect the business will reach $30 billion by 2023, according to a?report?by Marijuana Business Daily.
As the cannabis industry grows, retail dispensaries will be forced to keep up with a very large customer base, and they will need strong technology to keep those customers informed and satisfied. That’s where digital signage comes in. Digital signage can help keep guests informed of the latest products and recipes, while also delivering entertaining content while they wait in line.
Digital Signage Today spoke with Jermey Jacobs, co-founder and chairman of Enlighten, a digital signage provider for cannabis dispensaries, to learn about his company’s solution and how digital signage can transform dispensaries.
Q.?What do you offer for cannabis dispensaries?
A.?Our offerings are very diverse, as we have been operating outside of cannabis for over 10 years, helping to pioneer the digital signage industry. Enlighten’s digital signage offerings include:
Enlighten TV is the largest and fastest growing in-store network in the cannabis industry, currently displaying in over 1,000 locations nationwide. Our no-cost system seamlessly integrates custom-made, weekly-updated educational and entertainment content with location-curated marketing to engage customers and reduce perceived wait time, as well as educate customers to push for higher ticket sales. Educated customers are not only smarter but spend more money.
POS Integrated Smart Menus are designed to provide a hands-off experience to dispensary management. They are beautifully designed by our in-house design staff and integrated with the vast majority of POS providers, so you never have to lift a finger to update inventory on the screen.
On Demand provides a deeper level of budtender interaction, allowing the budtender to expand on specific product categories and even walk the customer through use methods, production methods, etc., through the use of a “emote”app on a tablet, phone, or computer. This can also be a customer-facing product, enabling the customer to take the selection process into their own hands by taking control of the remote.
TrafficWise allows retailers to get a more granular view on their in-store foot traffic. Included with every Enlighten TV system, TrafficWise pings passive cell phone signals to count exactly how many customers are in the store and remembers them for the next time they come back. This gives the retailer a view of not only total number of customers in a given time period, but also how many of those customers were return visitors. When compared with sales data, TrafficWise offers the retailer new insights into future sales strategies, staffing, and more. Beyond the retailer benefits, TrafficWise also serves as our impression verification system for advertisers.
Beacon CRM puts the power of frictionless-loyalty in the hand of the retailer. Customers are able to opt-in to visit-based loyalty systems and SMS marketing via a wireless check-in point, never having to physically check-in while visiting the location. Above SMS marketing and frictionless check-in, the retailer also gains access to proximity-based marketing if a rewards member is within a certain vicinity of the location. Think of Starbucks hitting you with push notifications when near a location.
Breakroom TV is a system designed to keep employees up to date on all company/compliance updates and active in the workplace while stocking, on break, or on lunch in the back office. You’ve heard educated customers spend more ? educated budtenders sell more.
ShowCase is our Virtual Budtender: an interactive kiosk where customers can educate themselves on products and their effects, allowing each and every customer an informative and interactive experience.
Captivate does exactly what the name suggests: captivates your audience. A completely custom-made video wall, Captivate displays curated content guaranteed to leave an impression.
Q.What are the dispensaries’ primary needs when it comes to technology like digital signage?
A.?An educated, well-informed customer base is what they are after. One of our primary goals is to empower customers to dive in and self-educate ? turning the guy who came in for the cheapest grams into the guy who is seeking out the highest quality concentrates to treat his pain. During his selection process, how will he know what to buy if your menus are out of date? Digital signage can educate customers on product offerings, and POS integrated menus effectively communicate your inventory.
Q.?How does digital signage help reduce lines?
A.?When a customer is well-informed on a location’s product offerings, they can make quicker decisions. Above that, when at a retail location, customers in any industry are passively asking themselves, “What should I buy today?” With location-curated marketing, dispensaries can answer that question. Lastly, kiosks allow consumers to make their orders directly.
Q.?How does digital signage help improve the customer experience at dispensaries?
A. Connection and understanding. If a customer can walk in and plainly see product offerings, they feel comfortable instead of lost. If that same person is able to learn something new about cannabis from signage, they appreciate the value-add and are more committed to your organization for providing the service. A deeper understanding of the product leads to confidence in product purchases. This translates to a win for the shop too because a better educated customer purchases bigger baskets.
Q.How can dispensaries save money on technology?
A.?One way is to consolidate vendors. This cuts down on the number of relationships you must maintain, while allowing companies like ours to offer deep discounts on the products and services you need.
Q.?What do you see as the future of customer facing technology in dispensaries?
A.Tablets and touchscreens are becoming standard: not only in retail, but in our everyday lives. How many times have you seen someone walk up to a screen and touch it, only to be disappointed that it’s not touchscreen interactive? Soon, almost every consumer-facing screen will be physically interactive.
We see larger touch displays and self-service kiosks becoming an option that retail storefronts will want to provide for their customers. Our express self-service kiosk, Touch n Go, will be launching in early 2020, and we already have many locations anxiously waiting to deploy this platform, which integrates with the same 20 POS companies as our Smart menus and On Demand products.
We also see augmented reality and shopper profiling being a great opportunity to empower the shopper: on the storefront and brand side. If customers are able to walk around a shop with a handheld unit that understands their product alignment and suggests products specifically for them, then the shop saves on staff time, the brand gets to engage directly, and shoppers feel empowered to take a deeper dive on their own.