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March 29, 2021

Dispensary Text Marketing: 3 High-Impact SMS Campaigns & Why They Work

Matt Dell

Keen to get more SMS campaign insights? Download our free SMS guide!


Dispensary text marketing can be one of the biggest revenue-drivers for cannabis retailers. However, the trick to SMS isn’t sending the same messages to every customer.

Happy Cabbage analyzed data and methods behind our clientele's most successful campaigns in March 2021.

We’re sharing the results with you today to help your cannabis SMS marketing efforts.

Highest Conversion Rate in 24 Hours: 14.92% 

A dispensary in Los Angeles sent this text out to 21 customers who opted-in to receive SMS marketing.

The campaign converted 14.92% of customers in 24 hours and 23.8% after 1 week.

Why It Worked: Targeting Product Type Affinity 

The dispensary sent SMS campaigns out to customer demographics segmented by preferred product type.

In this example, the text was for a demographic of flower consumers. 

Essentially, this meant they messaged a group of customers based on previously-known purchase behaviors in-store.

Targeting customer affinity to specific product types is an excellent way to personalize cannabis SMS marketing efforts instead of offering a catch-all discount.

Although the segmentation approach is relatively general, it’s more likely to bring customers back into the dispensary because the promotion mirrors preferred mode of consumption.

Highest ROI in 24 Hours: $17,867

This dispensary sent a SMS campaign out to 8,882 customers, returning nearly $18,000 in sales within 24 hours.

The targeted customers responded almost immediately, as most sales attributed to this campaign after one week happened within the first 24 hours.

Let’s break down the SMS campaign approach.

Why It Worked: Buying Pattern Segmentation 

Unlike the product affinity campaign that scored highest for conversion, this dispensary text campaign targeted different customers within unique buying behavior segments.

Looking at buying patterns, dispensaries can understand specific nuances in how customers interface with their storefront. 

 A few of those behaviors include:

  • Average order size
  • Average time between orders
  • Time since their past order
  • How long it takes to complete an orders


Buying pattern segments can help retailers deploy campaigns that target certain customer engagement levels.

This factor could potentially determine immediate ROI from dispensary text marketing.

Highest Customer Recapture Sales in 24 Hours: $1,387

Recapturing lost customers is an essential process to sustaining long-term dispensary revenue.

To understand the value in customers that lose interest in a retail location, take the following campaign as an example.


This dispensary sent a campaign to nearly 4000 customers, which prompted 12 lost customers (that didn’t order for 90 days or more before the campaign) to make a purchase.

The 24-hour sales from those 12 customers were $1,387, representing an average ticket size of $115.58.

Why It Worked: Hybrid Behavior & Preference Segmentation  

While the previous examples show targeting customer segments based on buying behavior or product preferences, this campaign combines into one further personalized across specific customer niches.

The campaign demonstrates how dispensary SMS marketing delivers impact when used within granular customer segments that incorporate data across preferences and purchase behaviors.

While this campaign did not generate the highest sales or ROI, it did bring back high-value customers that might not have returned after conventional promotions.

The findings from these three campaigns reveal a few critical takeaways for dispensary marketing teams to consider.

Key Takeaway #1: Personalize Marketing with Data 

Cannabis dispensary marketing isn’t as simple as setting up a mass text campaign or loyalty program. Customers expect more than that.

Furthermore, retailers can use the massive amounts of data within their POS to deliver personalized marketing experiences to consumers.

In the SMS campaigns, we found dispensaries that delivered targeted messaging to customer segments produced various unique sales outcomes related to conversions, sales, andcustomer retention.

Retailers that devote time to defining customer segments– independently or via platforms like Polaris– will likely have better control over the marketing results needed to sustain their business.

Key Takeaway #2: Lost Customer Opportunities 

Lost cannabis customers can hold significant value to dispensary revenue. 

As seen in our campaign study, lost customers averaged a ticket size of $115.58. That’s revenue that could’ve otherwise gone untapped.

However, marketing is required to recapture. 

The lost customers campaign metrics also lend to dispensary customer retention.

In advance of conventional loyalty programs, the role of targeted SMS campaigns can maintain or augment customer interest.

How do dispensaries engage lost customers as an opportunity?

The answer lies again in data and personalization. Find high-value lost customer segments and deploy relevant marketing that brings them back to the store.

Happy Cabbage’s Polaris helps dispensaries generate sustainable revenue via targeted SMS campaigns. Keen to learn more?
Get in touch!

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