In the not-so-recent past, pot users dreamed of walking into a store and walking out with a quality product. Since marijuana was illegal, the idea that such a store would exist seemed like a fantasy, but a lot has changed since then.
Shifting state laws have allowed the legal marijuana industry to flourish, and with that growth comes competition. Now, pot users don't have just one store to choose from. They may have two, three, or even five on the same block.
Quality products keep consumers coming back. Setting the tone and ambiance with music can help shoppers feel affiliated with your store. That could keep you safe from pesky competitors who want to steal your high.
Understanding Your Market
When legal issues are under control, it's time to consider what sorts of music would work for the consumers who come into your dispensary. In general, the music you play should feel familiar and appropriate to your audience. When they walk through the door, they should feel like the music and playlists are just right for your space.
So what's right for your space? Digging into research on marijuana users as a whole could help you to understand what this group typically likes and what they look for.
This seems to suggest that people who come into a typical marijuana dispensary are young, and they might appreciate music that seems familiar to this age group. Very old music by Benny Goodman or oldies by Elvis might not be right for them.
In 2018, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a study about marijuana users in the state of Colorado. Researchers found that the prevalence of use was highest among people ages 18 to 25. In this age group, close to 30 percent used marijuana. Among people 26 to 34, only about 18 percent used marijuana.
In a similar study, published in the Journal of Drug Education, researchers found that listening to energetic music (which researchers defined as rap, hip hop, soul, or funk) was associated with marijuana use. The researchers were trying to determine the type of music that prompted people to start a marijuana habit, but it's reasonable to assume that people who liked this music at the start of the habit would also like it later in life.
Research like this seems to suggest that people who use marijuana appreciate faster, modern, soul-infused music. This is what they tend to listen to on their own, so they might appreciate hearing it in their favorite shop.
For example, if you're hoping to connect with people who just don't feel comfortable with marijuana culture, like grandparents, you might use a playlist that draws heavily on the artists they know, such as Neil Diamond, Barry Manilow, or Cher. When they walk into your shop, they'll know they are in a different space made just for them.
If you're hoping to connect with a younger crowd that is really interested in traditional marijuana culture, your playlist could be heavily influenced by reggae. Playing Bob Marley or Jimmy Cliff could help them feel like you're speaking their language.
To push a subliminal sales message, you could ensure that your music playlists are dominated by artists who have expressed an interest in marijuana, including:
Whatever you choose, make sure to watch your customers as they stand in your shop. Are they bobbing to the music? Are they singing along? Or are they frowning or complaining? Your customers can help you understand whether you've hit the tone just right or if you need to make an adjustment.
Understanding what the typical marijuana user likes can be helpful, but don't discount the personal factor.
We'd love to help you find just the right ambiance for your marijuana shop.
We can help you pick the music that appeals to your customers, and we've connected with the legal entities involved, so you won't have to worry about inspections or fines. Contact us and let's get started.
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