The price of flower or edibles is the number one consideration of cannabis shoppers in Massachusetts now when they decide where and how often they are going to shop. That’s one of the key findings of our second annual research study, and that price sensitivity has taken an 8% jump since last year.

It’s not surprising when you consider the proliferation of shopping options the cannabis consumer has today versus just 12 months ago. Nearly 300 additional licenses to operate have been approved by the state’s Cannabis Control Commission in the past year and at least 18 Massachusetts cities and towns have five or more active. Worcester has 17. Northampton has 10.

What our study says

Our consumer research study, powered by our Syracuse based partner Drive Research, also uncovered increases in first-time users and an 11% increase in those saying they consume daily. These findings point directly to the lowering of social stigma around use of the formerly illegal product. Industry investors and operators nationwide see the lowering of stigma as a massive opportunity. Already, in Massachusetts the industry has seen $2 billion in sales since legalization, and 2021 alone could surpass $1.5 billion inclusive of medical sales.

At MassLive Media we see two major takeaways from these trends that should inform your marketing strategies. We work with dozens of cannabis clients in Massachusetts, Maine, and other legal states such as Michigan and Oregon. Relative to medical-only markets like Pennsylvania, or approved but not operating adult-use markets like New York and New Jersey, Massachusetts is a rapidly maturing marketplace. We continue to see a heavy concentration of marketing spend on top of the funnel awareness strategies such as billboards. While brand and location awareness are surely important, we recommend some shifting because the research shows:

  1. Existing cannabis consumers are becoming more discerning and choosier
  2. Massive opportunity exists through the lowering of stigma

What does this mean?

These trends point to a need for:

  1. Mid and lower funnel marketing strategies for existing consumers who want specials, deals, and product details
  2. Educational marketing such as branded content and video to help fence-sitters understand how to safely and effectively bring cannabis into their lives.

If you’re even curious about legal cannabis as an alternative to alcohol or prescription drugs you likely know there are dispensaries near where you live and work. Successful cannabis businesses need to be well positioned for that consumer’s curiosity and research.

If you want to dive deeper into our research study and talk with us about the resulting marketing solutions our clients are seeing success with, check out the full webinar below, visit us online here or contact us at sales@masslive.com