Featured Listing: Sammys Woodland Smokes

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About the business

Tell us a little about yourself. What’s your background? How did you start the business?

My business partner and I are two LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs who saw a big opportunity in the hemp industry two years ago.

Together we set out to help tobacco and nicotine smokers across the nation envision a better, more sustainable way to smoke. And we accomplished our goal. Our company now distributes a 100% all-natural, delicious, biodegradable, smokable CBD hemp product that changes lives and plants trees for the environment through our partnership with the non-profit organization One Tree Planted. Together we’ve planted 450 trees for forest fire recovery in Oregon and Washington this past summer.

We set out to help smokers quit smoking nicotine and feel good about helping the planet at the same time. And we’ve accomplished our goal. We now distribute our products to CBD stores, headshops, gas stations, and more across the United States.

As an eCommerce business, where are your products made?

Our products are grown in Oregon and manufactured in California.

What can you tell us about your Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) and Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

Our B2B and B2C customers keep coming back. They say our smoke is smoother, better tasting and has higher quality hemp than our competitors. We also gain folks that are looking for 0% THC cannabis as we have one of the lowest THC contents on the market at 0.16%.

Our customers tell us that our non-addictive CBD smokes have helped them quit smoking tobacco, nicotine and marijuana products. Our customers tell us that Sammy’s Woodland Smokes gives them the CBD & Chill vibe they want to calm their anxieties, help their depression, and help get them through the day without any of the nasty withdrawal symptoms associated with tobacco or the psychoactive effects of marijuana.

Our current business model primarily uses B2B customer account management to sell our product, rather than B2C. However, our website’s SEO and a few well-placed advertisements on certain websites have made our customer acquisition cost relatively low.

How have you marketed the product and where are your customers originating from?

Due to Covid and our other business commitments we faced two barriers to reaching market potential.

Firstly we were undercapitalized and lacked the investments needed to employ CBD marketing channels at this time, leaving lots of market opportunities on the table for other folks. Some of the more tried and tested marketing channels like Google Ads were closed to us because of our status as a regulated CBD product. However, legislation has now eased a little making it easier for CBD companies to reach audiences.

Our second barrier for marketing our product was our limited time and capacity. We have two other companies, a video production company and a local news media company that have really taken off and needed the majority of our attention and time. In addition, our staffing levels changed due to COVID leaving us with lowered capacity for this venture. Someone with a little more capacity than we’ve had will make a short meal out of maintaining the business as it stands and growing it to exceptional profit levels.

Despite the hurdles we’ve faced we did manage to build up a dedicated customer base.

Our customers have mostly originated from a B2B sales strategy. Our sales team would contact buyers via phone, email, and text. Our most reliable B2B customers have been small businesses, headshops, gas stations, CBD stores, and gift shops. We also approached some box stores and CBD/hemp store chains but due to covid, many buyers were not willing to take a risk with a new product.

Our secondary source of customers has been our eCommerce website and Instagram. Our SEO has enabled us to quite effectively reach a good group of repeat customers as well as new one time buyers who are looking to try something new or give our products as gifts.

Is the asset on your listing owner-operated, how much time does it take to run the business, who else is needed on the team, and what is automated?

We are owner-operated.

Currently, the business gets between 1- 2hrs a day from a single person, which is not quite enough to make it thrive but has managed to make the business break even. However, one part-time position would work and a full-time position would be even better to make this company really thrive. There are lots of opportunities for good work to happen.

The online sales and shipping label generation is automated through Shippo.

What does someone need to do to continue operating the business in its current form?

Fulfil online and wholesale orders, check in with current wholesalers and stores on stocking levels, respond to emails and maintain insurance & permits.

Growing the business

Can you list a few opportunities for a potential new owner to continue growing the business?

Make new deals with wholesalers & distributors. Increase B2C sales through SEO, Online marketing and listing the product on other sales channels. Run Social Media Influencer campaigns. (Easy and fun with a new product like this) Make new products like an SWS “smooth” and “flavour burst” brand. Get into other legal cannabis channels. Continue to develop networks with our established European and African ambassadors.

What has been the evolution of this asset since its launch?

When we started we had a very clear vision of the product we wanted to make and we haven’t strayed much from that vision since our onset.

Originally we had even thought of hand-rolling our hemp cigarettes. However, when it got down to feasibility and time management costs we elected to go for a more streamlined manufacturing process.

We did originally have more time to give to this business when we started, but due to the evolution of our other businesses, we have decided to sell this business.

How does this business make money? What are the current revenue streams?

We make money through Wholesale (B2B) and Ecommerce Sales (B2C) – it’s about 50%-50%

What marketing channels are most profitable for the business?

Speaking directly to distributors, retailers, and wholesalers opportunities.
Online Marketing.

How does the business currently acquire customers and what is your breakdown for marketing costs?

Sales calls to leads, product discovery in stores, and online, Instagram. We currently have very little marketing cost.

How big is your current team? How many people does it take to run this business?

Just one person with a little help from a partner.

What’s the reason for selling your business on Flippa?

Covid unforeseeably changed our other business so dramatically we have a much-lowered capacity to do sales for this product. It’s an excellent opportunity and hemp/CBD is a booming market, but It really should have a part-time or an almost full-time person continuing to develop relationships and sales opportunities.

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