Cannabis Prospect Magazine - February '22 - Issue #19

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Tether Survey Results: What Cannabis Brands Need to Know About Budtenders


By Katie Pringle

udtenders are the face of cannabis retail, and they have a big job in the industry. They are the first point of contact to help guide consumers, no matter what stage of their cannabis journey. We look to budtenders to establish brand loyalty and act as the face of the cannabis industry. Tether, Canada’s budtender community created by Marigold PR, surveyed more than 300 budtenders across the country to learn more about who they are and what they’re looking for from brands, retailers and the industry. Through the survey and more than 70 in-person retail visits in multiple provinces, Tether got the opportunity to learn about budtenders’ career aspirations, their opinions on the industry as well as education preferences. From these insights, brands, marketers and sales agencies can better bridge the gap between budtenders and cannabis brand loyalty. “A sincere thank you to Canadian budtenders for trusting Tether with your thoughts and opinions, and for allowing us to get to know you better,” said Bridget Hoffer, CSO and Co-Founder of Tether and Marigold PR. Budtenders that participated in the survey were entered to win a free week of lunch for their team. Congratulations to our winner Shari and the team from Soul Rebel Cannabis in Scarborough. Budtenders, at a glance: »» 54% of respondents identify as female »» 42% of budtenders surveyed were within the ages of 26-35, people 35+ represented 29% of respondents »» 32% have been employed in cannabis retail for approximately two years, with 25% working in cannabis retail for 3-5 years »» 50% have aspirations of career growth within the cannabis industry »» 70% agree that there is a need for more in-depth


Cannabis Prospect Magazine | February 2022

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product and industry education 88% of budtenders say they primarily learn through online research 80% indicate product sampling is their preferred method of learning 84% say that packaging is the industry’s key area for improvement 62% state sustainability as one of their biggest concerns 80% want to connect and build community with other budtenders

BUDTENDERS WANT: EDUCATION THROUGH EXPERIENCE While online research is beneficial and currently the top way budtenders source their information, their preferred way of learning is through experience. More than 70% of budtenders agree there is a need for improved educational opportunities for cannabis retail staff. Budtenders’ preferred means of learning is through sampling and 82% feel they could benefit from sommelier and sampling sessions that allow them to pair personal experience with education and product experts. Other activities that rated high with budtenders include cultivation tours and education sessions. Brand ambassador visits are resonating with 60% of budtenders whereas popups, often targeted at consumers, scored lowest in terms of budtender impact and preference. The combination of personal experience and deep product knowledge empowers budtenders to enhance the customer experience. BUDTENDERS WANT: INDUSTRY ADVANCEMENT & IMPROVEMENT Budtenders care about the cannabis industry and should be considered a motivated talent pool. More than 50%