In early 2019, MSA partnered with Consumer Research Around Cannabis to perform an analysis on their consumer survey data. The goal of the survey, which included 70,000 legal adults in 69 different markets, was to identify the likely buyers of cannabis products and understand their purchasing trends.
Overall, opinion on the use of cannabis is positive – over 65% of those surveyed approve of the use for medical purposes and 43% approve the use for recreational purposes.
Shoppers who are likely to make a cannabis purchase are typically younger shoppers between 18 and 34, predominately single and childless. They largely rent their homes, are likely to own a pet and are politically liberal. These shoppers spends 3 or more hours online daily, where they source their news, movies and music, and they enjoy activities with thrill or risk, such as snowboarding and gambling.
Respondents cited sleep aid, treatment of pain and managing depression/anxiety/stress as their top reasons to use cannabis products. Correspondingly, health and beauty products are the top selling CBD products in sales dollars and units.
Smoking cannabis is the most popular form of usage, followed by edibles. This correlates with survey results showing that tobacco consumers are more likely to try cannabis products, with cigarettes, e-cigarettes/vaping, and cigars users being the most likely. However, this could also result in a negative impact on the vape and cigar categories.
Unlikely shoppers of this category are usually 50 or older and retired. They are either married or widowed, have owned their home for 20+ years and have an empty nest. Spending less than 60 minutes a day online, this group, prefers cable TV for their entertainment and print media for news. These shoppers regularly attend religious services and are politically conservative, enjoying leisure activities such as golf and cruising.
For those who did not favor cannabis use, fear of feeling “high”, mental or physical harm, and violation of moral/spiritual/societal principals topped the list of why they would not purchase cannabis products.
For retailers looking to include cannabis products in their stores, leverage the front-end/cash register for display and signage to appeal to younger, tech-savvy, tobacco consumer. Manage the category as with other health-oriented items, and include gummies, oils, heath/beauty (topicals) and vapor categories in the category mix.
For more information on how MSA can help you understand your cannabis opportunities, click here.