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8 Dispensary Marketing Strategies That Work

Running a dispensary is a great business venture for any budding entrepreneur. As the legalization of cannabis spreads across the country, the demand for legal cannabis grows and so does the number of dispensaries offering products to customers. But with the increase in competition, dispensary owners need to stay on top with the best dispensary […]

8 Dispensary Marketing Strategies That Work

Running a dispensary is a great business venture for any budding entrepreneur. As the legalization of cannabis spreads across the country, the demand for legal cannabis grows and so does the number of dispensaries offering products to customers. But with the increase in competition, dispensary owners need to stay on top with the best dispensary marketing strategies that work.

Marketing cannabis businesses can be a struggle sometimes. There are certain laws and restrictions in place which bar you from advertising your dispensary in traditional ways, such as using billboards and TV advertisements. Major digital advertising platforms such as Facebook and Google also have restrictions on cannabis ads. However, you can get creative.

Fortunately, there are still many effective ways to market your dispensary. These methods will help you reach your target audience and ultimately appeal to as many new customers as possible. Not only are these impactful, but many of these methods are also cost-effective and some are even free. Here are 8 top dispensary marketing strategies that work.

1. Build A Website

Your website will become the core of all your digital marketing endeavors. Having a professionally-made business website can help in various ways. Not only is it a great place to promote your company and tell customers what you’re all about, but it can help increase sales and even help attract new people.

Practically all businesses nowadays have some sort of website, and not having one will cause your business to struggle immensely. It’s a place where you can instantly tell customers why they should buy from you and what you can offer them. You can explain your company’s goals, add menus, and even let your customers know how to buy from you.

What’s more, your website will link to various other forms of digital marketing. For instance, social media marketing can be used to direct potential new customers to your website. So can SEO content marketing. As you build more links back to your website, it’ll climb the rankings on Google and bring you even more new customers.

Many customers nowadays check a business’s website before they choose where to buy from, so make sure yours stands out. It’s worth seeking the help of a professional web designing service to ensure your site is user-friendly for users both on web browsers and mobile browsers.

Build A Website

2. Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is one of the most impactful marketing methods for all businesses today. A report found that 78% of consumers claimed social media posts from businesses informed their buying decisions. As such, it’s vital to take advantage of social media channels to reach new customers.

There are many ways you can use social media to market your dispensary. For instance, you can get involved in cannabis-based discussions. Look for cannabis-related hashtags and use it as a way to appeal to enthusiastic marijuana buyers with your products.

Social media is also the perfect place to post special offers and competitions. For example, asking users to share a link to your website for a chance to get 20% off or win some swag can instantly help your website spread to hundreds or thousands of new viewers.

Every social media platform is different, and it’s important to adapt your approach as such. For instance, you can use Instagram to post high-quality photos of your products. Twitter and Facebook are great places for posting links to content, interacting with customers, and promoting special offers. You can also make use of platforms such as Snapchat and Pinterest.

The more good content you post on social media, the more your following will rise. Having a strong social media following will make your dispensary look even better and encourage more users to buy from you.

3. Branded Products

As important as digital marketing is nowadays, it’s important to still utilize traditional marketing and promotional methods. One of the most impactful, tried-and-tested ways to promote your business is with custom branded products.

Custom branded products or “swag” are products with your brand name and logo imprinted on them. One of the main benefits of these is that they can help boost brand recognition and reputation significantly. The more times people casually see your logo, the more intrigued they’ll become.

This can be seen in all kinds of companies. Think of how it affects consumers if they commonly see people displaying a brand name on their t-shirt or even on the shopping bags they carry. Over time, it’ll cause them to see the brand in a more positive light.

Using custom branded products is also perfect for dispensaries, especially as there are so many important accessories that cannabis users regularly buy. You can offer custom grinders, custom rolling papers, custom lighters, custom rolling trays, and more.

Custom packaging can also help. Research shows that 31% of global consumers consider packaging very or extremely important. It’s also particularly important for dispensaries as cannabis needs to be packaged well to retain its freshness and potency. You might want to use custom Exit and Mylar bags for this.

Having custom branded products that appeal to cannabis users will encourage more sales. It can even boost repeat sales as they’ll remember your brand and want to buy from you again. Having a good, easily-recognizable logo is important for this, so you might want to invest in your branding if you’re running a dispensary.

Local SEO

4. Local SEO

SEO stands for search engine optimization- a series of marketing practices that boost your company’s visibility on search engines. The more you boost your search engine ranking, the more new customers will be able to find you when they search for dispensaries online.

Local SEO is particularly crucial for dispensaries, especially as you currently can’t deliver marijuana products across state borders. As such, you’ll want to finetune your SEO methods to reach as many local customers as possible.

A great way to do this is to list your business on as many directories as possible. Not only will this directly help local customers find you, but it’ll also have a positive impact on your local search rankings over time, resulting in you gaining even more customers.

Google My Business is a good place to start. Listing your business here will ensure you’re listed on Google Maps and also allow customers to review your business. As you gain more positive reviews, more local consumers will be drawn to your dispensary when they search for local dispensaries.

You should also list your business on cannabis-specific directories such as WeedMaps and Leafly. These sites are fantastic for attracting customers, especially as so many people use them to find local dispensaries.

On top of that, you can also boost your local SEO by using targeted keywords. Competing for keywords such as “best dispensary” will be tough with so much competition. However, using keywords such as “best dispensary in Tacoma” or “best weed to buy in Washington” can have a huge impact on local consumers.

5. Targeted Content

Targeted content refers to content that’s geared specifically towards your target market. This is a great way to appeal to the kind of people who would buy from your business. It’s also a highly effective way to maximize your SEO potential.

Most businesses have a blog for creating targeted content. By targeting blogs at specific keywords, businesses can instantly improve their chances of being found by new customers on Google.

There are many ways that dispensaries can use this marketing strategy to their advantage. For example, you might want to make blogs regarding “the best strains for relieving chronic pain” or answer frequently asked questions like “should you use marijuana to help with your anxiety?”

The goal is to create blogs based on things consumers are likely to search on Google. The more specific your content is, the higher it will rank on Google for the keywords you’re targeting. You can even use keyword tools such as Ahrefs to find out what people are searching for.

Email Marketing

6. Email Marketing

Email marketing is one of the most effective marketing methods today. An email marketing report found that using automated emails to appeal to customers could result in a 320% increase in revenue. Since it’s so cheap and easy to carry out, email marketing can yield a huge return on your investment.

Many companies nowadays use automated mailing lists to send things such as new product offerings, special deals, interesting content, and more to a list of interested customers. This helps your company remain at the forefront of their minds and can significantly increase repeat sales.

Of course, it’s important to handle email marketing right. When it comes to signing people up, ensure you offer a way for them to voluntarily opt-in while visiting your site or making a purchase. You should also make it easy to opt-out. This ensures that people on your mailing list are those who willingly want to be contacted.

You should also make sure you don’t overdo your automated emails to your subscribers. Sending out a special discount code now and then can instantly peak their attention. However, sending them content they aren’t interested in every day will cause them to opt-out and avoid your site. 

Reports on email marketing suggest that one email a week seems to be the sweet spot- but make sure you focus on emails that will interest your subscribers and cause them to potentially make a purchase.

7. Mobile Marketing

Much like email marketing, mobile marketing is a very impactful way to directly market your products to customers and encourage purchases. But again, like with email marketing, you need to handle your mobile marketing with care.

Mobile marketing involves sending SMS messages and push notifications to consumers who have opted-in to say they’re interested in receiving these messages. You can use mobile marketing software to do this and it can be a great way to instantly catch the attention of consumers.

However, as useful as it can be, it’s important not to overdo it. If users feel like their phone is being slammed with unwanted notifications, you’ll likely turn them away from your business. On the other hand, the occasional SMS to notify them of interesting deals can be a boon to your dispensary.

A good way to do this is to advertise exciting sales or discounts. If a customer receives a push notification telling them there’s a 25% off everything sale lasting for 2 days, they’re much more likely to visit your dispensary and make a purchase.

Mobile Marketing

8. Referral Programs

When it comes to getting new customers, nothing beats referrals from your existing customers. People are much more likely to buy from a dispensary if it’s recommended by their friends. And while you can’t force your customers to refer your company to friends, there are ways to encourage them.

Referral programs are becoming increasingly popular as a way to encourage customers to vouch for businesses to their friends. Just like other businesses, dispensaries can promote referrals in various ways.

For example, you could offer a special one-time discount for each referral. This encourages customers to refer as many new people as possible to your dispensary. Offering a discount for the people they refer can also bring you tons of new customers.

If you don’t want to offer discounts, you can also use a reward point system. These usually offer a free product or gift when a customer reaches a certain amount of points. Offering points for each referral a customer makes can encourage them to refer more people.

No matter how much you incentivize referrals, it’s important to ensure your business is worth the referral. Make sure that customer service is a priority for every customer who uses your dispensary. A good review can result in much more success whereas a single bad review can do much more harm.


Promoting your dispensary can be tough, especially as you’ll have to face restrictions on how you can market your dispensary. However, these 8 dispensary marketing strategies can do wonders for your business, gaining you many new customers as well as encouraging customer loyalty.

Many of these marketing strategies can also link to other strategies. For instance, you can promote your targeted content on social media to reach even more people. You can offer custom branded cannabis products as promotional gifts at events to improve brand recognition. Get creative with your marketing and your business will reap the rewards.