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  • Writer's pictureLeafbuyer Technologies

Best Practices in Dispensary Texting: Retain your Customers Effectively

Updated: Jul 17, 2023

Cannabis marketing is challenging. Facebook and Instagram don’t allow you to communicate cannabis deals, new customer acquisition channels are highly fragmented, and search engine marketing is prohibited by Google. Making sure you are engaging with your existing customers is essential, especially when you’re competing with so many cannabis retailers. It’s easy to throw tons of money on a myriad of platforms, but you also need to learn how to best utilize your existing tech stack, like a texting/loyalty platform. Here are ways you can maximize your return on investment (ROI).



MMS (Picture) Messages Work

Based on Leafbuyer’s POS integrations, using a text marketing service can increase your dispensary or delivery traffic by 15-25% on the days you send an MMS message. Using a picture message attracts customers’ attention and makes them less likely to opt out, along with increasing click through rates and differentiating your brand.


Picture messages furthermore have a far higher success rate in successfully getting your cannabis message delivered. Maximizing your reach vastly increases your ROI. Right now in the cannabis industry, MMS messages are performing far better than SMS campaigns, and we expect that trend to continue.


Engage Your Customers with Personalized Messages

Consumers buy different forms of cannabis for a variety of reasons. You want to make sure your messages show that you understand what products they want. According to Lisa Buffo.


Sending promotions for cannabis concentrates to a longtime shopper who buys only flower is not just a waste of resources. Such blanket marketing practices also could drive consumers to look for a different company that better understands their preferences.



Make sure that your texting platform can effectively target certain customer segments with their POS integrations. With Leafbuyer’s integration with major POS systems like Dutchie, Flowhub, Blaze, and Treez, dispensaries can target a text message to just customers who buy “PAX pods” or pre-roll buyers, for example. This type of marketing resonates better than a mass text blast, since it can increase loyalty within that demographic to better retain customers.


Automating personalized messages is crucial for dispensary operators who are constantly putting out fires. It’s easy to set up a campaign to retain a customer after 30 days to tell them “We miss you!” You can also send a happy birthday text, which shows them you care, since everyone wants their birthday to feel special. Automating your one-to-one cannabis texts fosters a personal connection with your customer so you can win their business for life.


Acquire New Opted-In Customers to Your List

Increasing the size of your texting list is incredibly important since you want anyone to start shopping with you to become a sticky customer. Do you know what your return rate is after a customer’s first visit? Many customers come in for first-time offers, but you need them to come back to make your margins work (which we know are tight!). Here are some tips to get a customer back after their first visit:


1. Include an incentive if they sign up for texting.

It’s helpful to provide this incentive on the second visit, since if they’ve shopped twice with you, they’re more likely to become a regular. An example text could be, “Come back in to XYZ dispensary and show this text to get 15% off your order.”


2. Educate your budtenders on the opt-in process.

Customers need to opt-in themselves, however budtenders can help coach a customer through the process, whether they’re opting in through a QR code, tablet, or sign-up link


3. Incorporate texting with your loyalty program.

Explain to a customer that they will receive exclusive deals and be a VIP member, further making them feel special.



But Where’s the ROI?

An effective retention strategy involves customer outreach, loyalty, and a unique dispensary experience. Communicating cannabis deals via text is one component of that, but an important one! Harvard Business Review did a study showing that retaining another 5% of your customer base can increase profits by 25-95%. SMS messages receive a 10x the response rates of print coupons, and are opened 5X more often than email campaigns.


Based on our POS data, we see that opted-in customers using who receive our messaging shop 15% more often. This also includes push notifications through


Customer retention is a key factor in long-term success, so prioritize strategies that not only attract new customers but also keep existing ones satisfied and engaged. By combining these approaches, cannabis businesses can optimize their marketing efforts and foster a loyal customer base in an industry that’s more competitive than ever.


To learn more, request a demo.

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