Politics and laws are in a bit of “who knows what’s gonna happen next?” state these days in the U.S., but assuming states that decriminalized marijuana are not shut down federally, this is a big growth area for a bunch of industries – including digital signage.
You have shops selling a lot of stuff over a counter, which begs for menus, as well as a product that’s going to be unfamiliar to many customers. You also have a lot of accessories and upsell opportunities. That means interactive screens and promotional displays.
Here’s an example of how that looks – the Medicine Man dispensary in Denver, CO, which has 14 screens at two separate locations (seven screens at each). One location has a five-wide menu system and the other has a three-wide menu system. The remaining six displays are playing promotional content throughout the store.
Jeremy Klammer of Anther Digital, which put the solution together, says the shops quickly saw the return. “We immediately saw increases in the redemptions of the featured promotions,” says Klammer. “Most notably, we saw $3,400 additional revenue from an Add-A-Gram initiative alone in the first month.”
The stores saw an increase of 580 purchases of Add-A-Grams in the first month after the screens went in, a 45% jump on the store’s highest margin. The system paid its way in that first month.
“This is from only one initial program. They have seen increased loyalty membership signups as well as sales boosts in all areas they have pushed,” add Klammer.
“While the customer will see these promotions, the salespeople also see the same promotion throughout their workday. During an eight hour shift, the promotion plays 120 times. Those are the people who are really making the sales happen, pushing higher margin items, and encouraging additional buys. It’s like having the sales manual in front of them all day long.”
The marketing team is now selling sponsor placements on the displays, which is incremental revenue. “I’ve provided them all the information they need to provide to a vendor – essentially breaking down the CPM for them,” says Klammer. “They handle the ad contacts – so it’s another thing. But it aligns everyone’s incentives and they see the highest return overall.”
One month ROI is obviously an eyebrow raiser – but it makes sense in a small environment where the screens will get noticed, and do the job of upselling.
Canada may also see a little boom in activity in a year as it legalizes marijuana sales. That’s being driven by the federal government, so there is no state/federal clash in the weeds (pardon the pun), but it’s also not all that clear who retailing will work.
The OTHER industry I see a lot of potential for, with a very similar model, is craft brewing with retail storefronts/bars. Small shops. Orders over the counter. Complicated products aimed at beer snobs and beer lovers.
Companies like Insteo have templates and I know solutions shops like Pacific Digital Signs are actively marketing to that sector.
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for some 14 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He’s based near Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast.