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    How to Catch a Unicorn / Engaging Millennials and Why Their $$ Matters to You

    You already know how important young customer sales are. You need them to thrive. Why? Twenty- something cannabis consumers make up over half of all cannabis sales. Gen X is on the rise, but nowhere near the spending power of millennials. You’ve got to connect with the largest spending group to remain profitable long-term.

    So why are the cool kids lining up at one dispensary and not another? Just like boomers, millennials have certain store attributes they’re looking for when shopping and why they avoid certain shops. Here’s what the research is telling us and some ways you can attract that unicorn.

    Social connection

    Millenials have an innate need for social connection, physically (especially after taking a covid year off from in-person shopping) and virtually too. This is probably a byproduct of the saturated social media world they’re grown up with. You will need your shop to be a part of their social connection. Become a safe place for millennials to connect with you and your products. Pull together your waiting area and make it a space for friends to meet up and shop together. Don’t worry- I’ve got some tips to get you thinking about what that could look like.


    This age group has a great concern for society as a group. They also hold a great need to be heard, seen and an ability to share online. This means that if you want to capture the client, you’ve got to give them an outlet to be seen. Check this past blog out if you haven’t already read it. (Quick tricks to make a great selfie area) You’ve also got to let them know they’re being heard. Those google reviews? READ them. Reply to them and share the hell out of the good ones. You can expect that if you’re engaging with your millennial on social, they’re telling their friends that you’re listening to them.


    Millennials thrive on seeing growth, wellness and healthy living. The dropout stoner stereotype no longer applies. This generation really does care about what they’re consuming. They also care about educating themselves on the best product for the result they want. Be a community leader, a cannabis educator. Ever lead an “edibles for newbies” class? I guarantee your crowd will be more millennial than any other age group. They care and they want a quality journey. Engage in their wellness.

    Personal Values

    85% of Millennials were willing to switch brands — assuming price and quality were equal — if the second brand supported a good cause. Millennials love buying products that align with their ethics and personal values. On nearly every Design Map Session, I learn about what got you into this industry, your why. You need to tell your story to your customer as well. Your why and your journey. Give the clients something to connect to and they are 10000% (not an actual statistic, just a ballpark) more likely to not only remember your story and what you stand for. And that obviously makes them more likely to return and spend.

    Here’s a great little visual on what millennials care about, which is exactly what you should be marketing to in order to capture their attention. See how much brand image matters to them?

    This generation holds great power with their spending habits. They make up over half of all cannabis sales. Also- these could be lifelong customers. Very few retail segments are able to retain customers into multiple life stages, so it’s ultra important your branding, vibe and social statement is clear to them. So continue to be clear through all aspects of your retail dispensary and you will no doubt capture the unicorn millennial clientele.