Helping The Retreat Launch a Dispensary from Scratch

The Retreat wanted to start a dispensary in the newly-legal New Jersey market.

The Retreat is a New Jersey-based modern wellness dispensary that prioritizes wellbeing. They believe that every individual has a unique version of a ‘retreat,’ where they define how cannabis contributes to their health and wellness.

Founders Natalie and Alex are extremely passionate about diversity and inclusion, social justice, and giving back to the community. Given this priority, it was important to create a brand that is deeply informed by creating a retreat for all.

Cannabis Creative fleshed out a beautiful, minimalistic brand that evoked the feeling of a retreat.

The team at The Retreat came to Cannabis Creative with inspiration from dark, natural, and minimalistic brands in a variety of industries and a fundamental element of brand identity: a logo.

Knowing they wanted this to translate into their in-store experience and website, our team took great care in expanding on their visual brand identity that spoke to the peaceful ambiance they were going for.

The first step was to establish an official color palette that evoked a welcoming, relaxing, and inclusive atmosphere. We leaned into neutral skin tones without much accent color to emphasize a down-to-earth feeling.

A neutral palette paired with their existing logo created a natural, serene vibe to the brand that could easily be translated into an in-store experience. Once this visual feeling was established, the Cannabis Creative team moved into brand messaging.

Brand messaging is meant to carry the emotional aspect of the brand throughout all its communications. The mood that was solidified through the visual branding only fits if the words on the pages align.

Our expert writers brought The Retreat’s brand to life with brand messaging guidelines that pulled together all the non-tangible pieces of the brand: mission statement, core values, personality, voice, and more.

Through this process, we came up with the tagline: “Your retreat – your way.”

The team at The Retreat really valued this phase of the process because it turned their vision into reality. Between the brand messaging and visual brand identity, they could see the pieces of their brand being put together, brick by brick.

Next, Cannabis Creative built a best-practice dispensary website to give their brand an online presence.

Knowing that they were starting from scratch before they even had a physical storefront ready to go, it was important to set them up for success and stay within their startup budget by only focusing on things that would move the needle.

For a new dispensary, this includes content strategy, search-engine-optimized copy, and a beautiful website design and user experience. Our Dispensary Launch Package emphasizes translating a brand idea into a stunning website experience because it will ultimately be your online HQ as a business – new or not.

To weave in The Retreat’s strong brand values, we used diverse imagery all throughout the site and kept the user experience simple, minimalistic, and high-end to emulate their in-store experience.

We also set up an ADA tool because the team really believes in accessibility for all. They wanted users of all abilities to be able to easily navigate their site and hopefully be compelled to visit them in-store.

All of these elements combined resulted in a website design that achieved the calm and comforting ethos of The Retreat. In addition to emphasizing the driving values of the brand, we wanted to create a personal and relatable element to the site that made users feel welcomed into the dispensary, even if they were browsing online.

Our expert copywriting team collaborated with the client to craft a unique “Letter from the Founders” section on the About page. Here, founders Natalie and Alex shared their journeys and expressed their mission and vision for The Retreat.

With a personalized approach to this part of the business, the whole website felt much more inviting, embracing the very foundation of creating a ‘retreat’ for all.

Another major aspect of the Dispensary Launch Package is a strong SEO foundation. In addition to optimizing the website copy, we wrote three, long-form educational blogs to include on the website. This gives Google strong, relevant content to crawl, right from day one.

Not only does the blog give search engines more to work with, therefore increasing the likelihood of ranking in search results in the future, but it also gives visitors and potential customers content to read and learn from.

Cannabis Creative was able to develop a purpose-driven, community-first, custom-built website that beautifully captured the brand’s mission while offering all the benefits of an optimized, mobile-ready website. Now, they’re equipped with the most essential marketing assets as The Retreat prepares to open its doors in 2024.

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