Growth Strategies / Cannabis

6 Ways Green Entrepreneurs Are Integrating AI Into Cannabis Sales and Ecommerce

Technology helps find leads, filter prospects and more.
6 Ways Green Entrepreneurs Are Integrating AI Into Cannabis Sales and Ecommerce
Image credit: Nick Shepherd | Getty Images
Guest Writer
CEO of Fancy Lab
4 min read
Opinions expressed by Green Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

It’s 2019, and the cannabis industry is finally on the verge of widespread global legalization.

With 33 states in the U.S. allowing patients to use cannabis medically and 10 of those states enjoying the use of marijuana for recreation, the growth and technological advancement of the cannabis industry can only get better.

As a result of the growing global demand for cannabis, many AI and machine learning companies have launched innovative products to help marijuana businesses speed up processes, reduce errors and significantly reduce their cost of production. Some of these companies, like Motorleaf and Leaf, have completely revolutionized farming as we know it.

Related: President Trump Signs Executive Order Establishing the 'American AI Initiative'

AI products also help to drive sales by making it easier for businesses to keep the transition from online visitor to customers as convenient and engaging as possible. Here are six ways artificial intelligence is helping green entrepreneurs make more sales.

1. Improved customer service with chatbots.

The introduction of chatbots has disrupted the customer service process in the cannabis industry. As the need for education on safe cannabis use grows, chatbots are being used to educate and engage users in active learning through guided discussions.

According to Armen Yemenidjian, the founder and CEO of Essence Vegas, virtual assistants inform users of different cannabis strains and peer-reviewed medical journals. They pair this information with various health symptoms to help them make the best buying decisions.

AI bots have been predicted to take over 85 percent of customer service and interactions by 2020 and drive up to $33 trillion of annual economic growth, according to leading research and advisory company, Gartner.

2. More effective employee training.

Technology has brought an end to the days of “one size fits all” in employee training. Now, AI can collect and analyze data, which will facilitate the creation of customized learning programs. The cannabis industry is growing, and more companies are springing up every day. Sales managers are implementing AI to help their team members learn more over time.

Today, learning is more about flow than instruction. This is why implementing new sets of technology and experiences to drive learning and performance will help to equip your sales team with the skills they need to close more deals.

Related: High Tech Is Powerfully Influencing the Future of the Cannabis Industry

3. Find leads.

More than 40 percent of salespeople say prospecting is the most challenging part of their job. Instead of buying lists of prospects who’re not interested in their products, green entrepreneurs are using AI to find the people who are most likely to buy their products.

Node, Siftrock and the Linkedin sales navigator tool integrate AI and machine learning to help marketers discover and recommend new potential customers.

4. Filter prospects.

Artificial intelligence helps cannabis businesses filter through warm and cold leads. By analyzing data and identifying people who are searching for specific products, AI helps sales teams prioritize leads and focus efforts on good prospects.

An example of an AI system that helps marketers understand prospects better is Netra. Netra analyzes visual content from social media platforms to understand consumer interests better.

5. Better post-sale delivery experience.

Because of how competitive the cannabis industry is becoming, optimizing post-sale user-experience is critical. Top marketers understand the importance of converting a new customer to a loyal customer and ultimately a brand ambassador.

Starship Technologies is revolutionizing neighborhood deliveries by piloting wheeled delivery robots in London. This post-sale delivery experience gives customers something to talk about and converts these customers to brand ambassadors.

6. Sales forecast.

Artificial intelligence can be used to estimate future sales. With accurate sales forecasts, green entrepreneurs can make informed business decisions and predict long and short term performances. Using AI for sales forecasts helps companies achieve:

  • Efficient resource allocation
  • Better future planning
  • Highly effective sales strategies

Related: Women Bought Twice As Much Cannabis in 2018 As They Did The Year Before

Conclusion.

While it may seem like AI is taking over most of the marketing roles in the cannabis industry, human beings still have many positions to fill. AI bots struggle with the context in language and behavior, but the best sales reps effortlessly communicate the value of their cannabis products to a variety of audiences.

Artificial intelligence may be more efficient, but human beings will always be more relatable.

By Javier Hasse
From retailers to growers, producers, and suppliers, there’s a seemingly never-ending list of startup opportunities in this emerging market. In Start Your Own Cannabis Business, marijuana, biotech, and entrepreneurship reporter Javier Hasse introduces forward-thinking entrepreneurs like you to the industry and shares hard-earned tips and success stories from pioneers and visionaries in the marijuana industry.
Learn More

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