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Indie Retailing 101:Why Good Design = Good Business


Higher Expectations

Now that cannabis has become a significant part of mainstream culture as waves of legalization wash over the nation, the basics are no longer going to cut it when it comes to product design. Whether in terms of beauty, functionality, or longevity, we are innately drawn to objects — especially in our homes — that speak to their level of ingenuity.


Due For a Disruption

This is certainly true in the cannabis accessories market, where many head shop shelves are still stocked with the same ol' rolling papers from the '70s. Even someone who hasn’t smoked pot since they called it that would recognize some of the biggest brands on the market, meaning the modern market is desperately due for a disruption. But when you take a consumer object that everyone already has (or can find one for cheap) — how do you convince your consumer to invest in their smokeware?


New Demographics

Stoners are no longer just teenagers following the Dead across the country; they're mothers, professors, athletes, and more. They crave aesthetically oriented smokeware that is as unique as they are -- and many of them are willing to spend on it. The smoking experience is no longer one-size-fits-all, and the plethora of canna-entrepreneurs from war veterans to celebrities prove that the expanded market requires a bolder design to stand apart (and last) amongst their many competitors.


The Big Upgrade

Even the smallest accessories, like a plain lighter with well-designed graphics, can improve sales and thus your return on investment. For more substantial cannaccessories like grinders, water pipes, and more, the majority of your target audience likely already has a perfectly serviceable version in their home. A better design — through aesthetics, functionality, or material — must be compelling enough to drive your customer to add to their collection or, even better, replace the smokeware they already have.


Partnering for Success

The customer’s experience begins the moment they get your mail. You've just flubbed your first impression if your beautiful product is shrouded in not-so-pretty packaging. In this industry especially, small businesses often feel they have to do it all themselves, but a strategic design partner can be a hugely beneficial way to boost your business through resonant products and packaging.


What We Offer

Burning Tree is a boutique design studio founded to fulfill the ever-growing plant medicine market — and packaging is only the beginning of how to give your brand a design revolution. Besides one-off product design and development, their services sweep the gambit from full suites of white-label goods like rolling papers, matches, and more to manufacturing sourcing and influencer gifting.

Whether you’re just starting up or are looking to get an edge on the competition, great design (and later, great marketing) is the way to do it — just look at alcohol! Would you rather have a dirty martini or vodka in a solo cup? Even if the end result is the same, the way you look at it can change absolutely everything.


What's the Toke Away?

  • (1) NEW CUSTOMERS - Don't fall into the trap of stocking your store with products for customers of the past. Bring in products that will appeal to the tastes of who is actually shopping in your store (or someone else will).

  • (2) ENCOURAGE UPGRADING - Most of your customers already have a pipe, bong, and grinder. If you want to see these, you need to offer something that will prompt them to add to their collection or replace an existing piece.

  • (3) OUTSOURCE YOUR GAPS - If you need a fresh perspective of how your brand can come alive on private label products, reach out to Burning Tree to ensure you make a great first impression to your customers and who your products get shared with.

Interested to Learn More?

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