Themes are a fraction of the entire cannabis market, but around Valentine’s Day, when lots of couples are trying to spice up their sex lives, the product category rides Cupid’s arrow to higher sales.
Food and beverage sales are also growing, according to Headset, a Seattle-based data analytics company.
Sales in topics related to Valentine’s Day 2020 – including massage oils, bath salts and lubricants – rose more than 20% in the past four weeks, according to Headset.
Sales of food and beverages rose by more than 10% over the same period.
The rosier sales figures are not a romantic accident, but part of a concerted effort by a growing number of marijuana companies to get new customers and use love to increase sales.
“It’s a great way to introduce people to cannabis as it’s an intimate, special holiday when people try things out. You will try them with a partner. It’s an ideal cannabis adoption vacation, ”said Lisa McClung, CEO of Coda Signature, a food and current product manufacturer with offices in Colorado and California.
Cultivators, product makers, and retailers in legal marijuana markets in the United States create vacation-tailored products and promotions, and hire in-house and third-party designers to create packaging that will pique customers’ curiosity.
“It shows that the cannabis industry is becoming more mainstream. Just like you would go to Trader Joe’s or your local grocery store, you will see Hershey or the seasonal baked goods, ”said Janet Matula, product specialist at Platinum Vape, a California company that sells groceries, flowers and vapes in addition to vapes CBD themes.
Cannabis users expect the same thing, Matula added.
Topics score in February
Usually a wallflower in the pharmacy, the subjects receive their Cinderella moment in February.
Last year, the product category saw relative sales growth of almost 21% from February 12-14, compared to the previous four weeks. Sales of groceries increased by almost 13% and sales of beverages by 12%, according to the Headset.
According to Headset, the current segments with the highest relative sales growth compared to the past four weeks were:
- Massage oil / lubricant: + 115.3%
- Bath salts, soaking and peeling: + 34.8%
- Transdermal products: + 32.1%
According to Headset, massage oil and lubricant products accounted for 2.3% of their total sales for 2020 from February 12-14, 2020, although those three days accounted for only 0.8% of the available shopping days in 2020.
This is a big reason why Coda paired infused bath bombs with two infused bars of chocolate as part of its Valentine’s Day promotion.
“We have put together a promotion that is supposed to offer a sensory experience. How many of the five senses could we help brighten people’s Valentine’s Day? “Said McClung.
While themes and groceries generate higher sales on Valentine’s Day, the industry as a whole is far more modest compared to other occasions.
In 2020, Valentine’s Day – which fell on a Friday – and the previous two days (February 12-13) saw modest growth in total marijuana product sales of 7.8% in the past four weeks, Headset reported.
The retail chain The Green Solution (TGS) in Colorado, whose special products for Valentine’s Day include a tulip-shaped pre-roll, recorded a sales increase of around 10% compared to typical days during the holiday week.
In comparison, the increase in sales over the unofficial 4/20 cannabis vacation is about 50%, said TGS President Steve Lopez.
Codas McClung agreed.
“It’s got a slight increase, but it’s not like 4/20,” she said. “We thought it could actually have more traction … because it doesn’t necessarily have the upward trend I would expect.”
Even so, Coda is making more targeted efforts to take advantage of Valentine’s Day and other seasonal occasions to boost business. However, efforts are not only focused on creating short-term revenue, but also on:
- Gain new clients.
- Introduction of new products.
- Strengthen relationships with retailers.
“The packaging, the flavors and the high quality ingredients can go together and be a special moment,” said McClung.
“But you can also introduce something to people that will keep them coming back to the store.”
While some companies bundle existing products for special occasions like Valentine’s Day, others make special limited-edition products that can also increase sales.
Platinum Vape, for example, developed Love Bites – strawberry gums dipped in dark chocolate – for the coming Valentine’s Day.
The company produced approximately 4,000 units – one unit is a bag of 10.10 milligram pieces – that were released the last week of January and sold out before February.
Because of the success of that first run, Platinum Vape ran a second run that exceeded the number of units in the first run shipped to stores in the past week, Sadler said.
In the past, Platinum Vape has done additional advertising for special occasions like Valentine’s Day.
But it’s only in the last few months that the company has gone to great lengths to take advantage of seasonal occasions by developing special products.
For example, Platinum Vape has also created limited edition products for Christmas and the Day of the Dead.
Not all marijuana companies hit it off on Valentine’s Day, however.
Karyn Wagner, an executive at Paradigm Cannabis Group, a California-based company with extraction and food divisions, said the company’s Sexxpot subsidiary, which offers a low-potency pre-roll, is having trouble finding pharmacies ready To try out Valentine’s Day promotions.
The problem: Most pharmacy executives who choose the products to sell are men, Wagner said.
“They don’t understand that women want sexual enhancement products. They just don’t get it, ”she said.
Wagner added that while the owners of pharmacies with Sexxpot got cold feet, the feedback from the budget tenders is that it is a product that can be sold.
“Why wouldn’t you want products that target older women who might be part of your population,” she said.
Omar Sacirbey can be contacted at [email protected]