One of the challenges that we come up against at Parsl from a marketing perspective is clearly communicating the full breadth of benefits we deliver to the cannabis industry.
For instance, one question that crops up fairly regularly, and was brought up in our Telegram group recently, was how we are planning to achieve significant market penetration when many legal cannabis industries have state-mandated tracking systems, such as METRC, that businesses must use in order to legally sell cannabis products.
It is a fair question. Why would a business use Parsl when it would also have to run a different tracking system co-currently to legally operate?
Well, the answer is that tracking is not the only thing that we provide. If it was we would have a very difficult time of things but for Parsl tracking is only one component of the capability of our technology.
The highest value add we provide to the industry has to do with how we integrate both product compliance and financial compliance. So when a cannabis business comes to us to enquire about what they get for their subscription to our technology (plus the extra cost of smart tags), we don’t just say “this will do your tracking for you” even though it will, we also explain that;
- You will have easier access to banking and payment services and those will be provided to you at a lower cost because of the way we de-risk things from the bank’s perspective.
- We will provide you an ROI because you will be able to market better to your customers
- We will help generate additional ROI from the fact that customers will prefer your product as it can be verified and provide more information than any other system can provide
- We can ensure that your products aren’t tampered with using our anti-counterfeit function, which are a core part of our system. We stop counterfeit product, and also stop money laundering, prevent product and financial leakage.
And that is just a small part of the value we provide. Depending on where your cannabis business sits in the supply-chain there is a wealth of different tangible benefits that using Parsl can deliver that will impact a business’s bottom line, even when tracking is taken out of the equation.
Systems such as METRC are indeed mandated for cannabis companies to use to report their product tracking data (known in the industry as Seed-to-Sale). With the above in mind, our system is going to be built with an API endpoint that integrates with Metrc so that the data our system collects can be easily reported via METRC.
And it’s not just METRC, it’s also BiotrackTHC and MJFreeway and other mandated systems. In many places you have to use them, and in some others you can choose which system to use as long as you report the data in a structured way that the government requires. Our plan is to be able to work in all places and with all systems. We have a global perspective, and are focussed on not just the USA, but also Canada, Colombia, Australia, China, Greece, Malta, Lesotho, Germany, Korea, Thailand and everywhere else on the planet cannabis is legal in any form.
So we aren’t just building Parsl to be a hard replacement option for cannabis tracking systems. You can use it in conjunction with a mandated system, or use it as its own independent tracking system and get the full suite of benefits either way.
Our go-to-market strategy is not to play the “pay the lobbyist” game, as that’s a war we won’t win, and not a smart strategy anyway.
It works for a little bit of time, but eventually incumbents are disrupted by up and comers. In the same way that METRC disrupted MJFreeway and the numerous other examples we have, METRC themselves and others will also be disrupted as they haven’t built a product that the industry actually likes to use.
Legislators aren’t in place forever, and government contracts always need to be renewed. We are building our product to make the industry fall in love with what we’re building. We make sure that people don’t need training to be able to use our software (something currently required by METRC and others for example) and we try to ensure that additional staff members don’t need to be hired just to run our system.
In addition to the fact that we are able to offer extremely low pricing. Subscriptions will be as low as $10 a month in some cases (exclusive of smart packing) making us a compelling option for cannabis businesses to consider. Add to that the fact that we hit multiple pain points such as law enforcement integration, lab test integration, superior regulator monitoring abilities, public transparency dashboards, limits on customers who try to game the system and more.
Parsl doesn’t have first mover advantage from a Seed-to-Sale perspective, that ship has sailed. But METRC’s hold on the number one spot is predicated on the fact that they are a package deal with owning a cannabis license. This might have helped them be first to market, but it is a lousy way to maintain the position of first to customer’s mind.
Internet Explorer manages to survive because it comes preinstalled with Windows and Bing survives because it is the default search engine of Internet Explorer. Sure, this might be an adequate way for those companies to continue to make money, but when you think ‘web browser’ and ‘search engine’ who is the first company that comes to mind?
Parsl is going to make itself the number one cannabis tracking system by being the option that cannabis businesses want to use, instead of the one they have to use.