customer loyalty program

Customer loyalty programs are a very effective remarketing strategy for all businesses, including those in the cannabis industry. Canna-businesses face unique customer engagement challenges that customer loyalty programs may help address. The key to implementing a powerful customer loyalty program for your canna-business is to choose one that suits your financial needs and appeals to your customer base. 

How can a customer loyalty program benefit businesses in the cannabis industry? How can you create the most effective cannabis customer loyalty program?

Read on to learn everything you need to know about cannabis customer loyalty programs. 

Perks of a Customer Loyalty Program in a Cannabis Dispensary 

Here’s how a customer loyalty program can benefit your dispensary:

  • Customer Retention. Loyal customers are incredibly valuable to all businesses, especially those in the cannabis industry. Given the challenges associated with converting new customers, repeat customers are incredibly valuable. Customer loyalty programs are a way to reward and entice existing customers, which in turn helps you create loyal customers that continue coming back to your dispensary. 
  • Generate new leads. While customer loyalty programs will certainly help you keep customers coming back, they can also set your dispensary apart and entice new customers as well. New customers will be interested in taking advantage of your deals. When new and existing customers sign up with their email or phone number, you’ll have their contact information for remarketing purposes. 
  • Increase customer spending. Customer loyalty programs tend to get customers to spend more per visit. On average, dispensary loyalty members spend $10 more per visit than non-loyalty members. This may because they are trying to earn their cashback or incentives. 
  • Analyze customer data. Your customer loyalty program is not only a way to give back to and encourage customers, it’s also important for collecting customer data. You’ll be able to use the data you collect from your customer loyalty program to determine which products to stock and promote. 

Visit-Based vs Spend-Based Cannabis Loyalty Programs

There are two primary types of loyalty programs that dispensaries tend to implement. One is visit-based and the other is spend-based. For visit-based programs, you reward customers based on how many times they visit your dispensary. Depending on how you set up the program, the customer may earn a set number of points or dollars per visit. For spend-based loyalty programs, the customers earn based on how much they spend. 

Typically, the spend-based loyalty program makes the most sense and is most beneficial for canna-businesses. For customers, spend-based loyalty programs can be more appealing, because the customer will feel they are rewarded more when they spend more. If you choose a visit-based program, it can incentive lower spending per visit. Spending-based loyalty programs can encourage bigger spending because the more that customers spend per visit,  the faster they accumulate points and can redeem rewards. Using this model, you can track exactly how much the program costs. You’ll also get deeper insights about individual shopping behaviors and the ROI of the program. 

Additional Loyalty Program Ideas for Cannabis Retailers 

While it often makes sense to use a spending-base loyalty program as your primary system, you can also offer rewards and incentives for other actions. You may add these ways to earn points as part of your overall loyalty program or run temporary campaigns. Here are some ideas for other ways to allow customers to earn canna-business rewards:

  • Allow customers to earn points or rewards for posting about your products on social media. Some ideas are selfies with your products, how-to videos, social media reviews, or other unique, engaging content. 
  • Gift card program. Gift cards are beneficial for your dispensary, and you can leverage them to build brand loyalty. For example, you can offer a 10% discount on purchasing gift cards, or you can provide loyalty rewards in the form of a gift card. Gift cards bring customers back to your store, and they can help you attract new customers if the customers pass on the gift cards to friends or family. 
  • Referrals. Adding referrals to your loyalty program is an excellent way to gain new customers. Offer the new customer an exclusive discount while also rewarding the referring customer with a free product or points for their loyalty cards. 

Tips for Creating and Implementing a Cannabis Loyalty Program

Understanding the perks and functions of a loyalty program is only the beginning. To realize success with your customer loyalty program, you’ll need to carefully craft and implement it. Here are some of our top tips for your canna-business loyalty program:

  • Determine your goals. Are you looking to attract customers, retain customers, increase visit frequency, or increase the average order value? The structure and rewards of your program should match your goals. 
  • Find out what your customers want. Take the time to research what your customers want. Ask them via short surveys to see what kind of program and prizes they’re most interested in. 
  • Start small and build up. You’re better off gradually increasing the perks and incentive of loyalty programs than making grand promises you cannot keep. 
  • Keep it simple. Overly complicated loyalty programs are a turnoff. Keep the process simple for customers and your team. 
  • Offer personal rewards. Discounts, points, and products are great but they only go so far. Incorporate some unique, personal incentives like exclusive events or outings. 
  • Announce the program early. Announce the start of your program, and any changes, well ahead of time. 
  • Engage customers with the program. Make sure the program is accessible to customers and make it fairly easy to earn the first few rewards so customers have a strong incentive to keep shopping at your dispensary. Send text or email reminders and updates with an easy way for customers to view their progress or account. 
  • Keep it fresh. The canna-business is a fast-paced, rapidly changing industry with a lot of steep competition. Keep your loyalty program relevant and fresh by adjusting it when needed. 
  • Monitor your ROI. Don’t forget the purpose of loyalty programs. While you want to provide value to your customer, you also want to be profitable. Monitor your program to ensure it’s benefiting your dispensary. 

The Best System for a Cannabis Loyalty Program

The right loyalty program can make a world of difference for your cannabis business, but the #1 tip for getting started is to have the right system in place. Anthea powered by RCS is a comprehensive retail management system designed to meet the specific needs of cannabis dispensary operations. With Anthea, you’ll always have the tools and analytics you need to make the best business decisions for your dispensary. With a blend of retail and technology experience, our team can help you optimize your entire canna-business, including your customer loyalty program. Learn more about our industry-leading Cannabis POS and how it can help you with your customer loyalty program by requesting your Anthea demo HERE

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