Medterra Joins Private Companies Penetrating the Mass-Market Channel
By William Sumner, Hemp Business Journal Contributor
Hemp Business Journal has been monitoring a growing number of privately held hemp companies making significant increases in sales across the online and mass-market channels. One company that has stood out in such research is Medterra, which has defied analysts’ projections by penetrating the U.S. mass-market channel in a matter of months.
Before passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, there was considerable debate among industry insiders as to which hemp companies would be among the first to enter the large-scale retail market. Most expected publicly traded operators like Charlotte’s Web Holdings or CV Sciences to become the first to penetrate the mass-market channel. Companies like Medterra were hardly on the radar.
Despite the lack of national attention, Medterra’s products are now sold in national outlets including CVS, Walgreens, and Albertsons. According to Jay Hartenbach, the CEO and cofounder of Medterra, it was no accident. Medterra was able to pick up those stores, Hartenbach says, because his company focused on building the parts of the business that retail chains look for, as opposed to merely raising money or acquiring other companies.
“You’ve got to have your supply chain fully intact, you need to have a sales team that knows how to navigate major retailers, you need to have product offerings that are unique,” says Hartenbach, “because they’re not taking a hundred companies, they’re taking five.”
This laser-like focus on the fundamentals has brought Medterra success not only in the retail space, but also with online sales. Medterra accredits its online success to its ability to educate health- and wellness-based consumers, and earn their loyalty.
“From an e-commerce standpoint, you’re going to live and die by your customer’s reorder rate,” said Hartenbach. “You’re going to have to spend some money to acquire those customers. The goal is to give them a good enough product so that they come back and reorder, allowing you to recoup some of the acquisition cost.”
In addition to providing a product that customers trust, one of the most significant contributing factors to Medterra’s progress has been its focus on consumer education. For both retailers and consumers, CBD is still a relatively new substance that leaves many with more questions than answers.
By providing educational resources about CBD, Hartenbach says, Medterra was able to convert clients and customers at a much cheaper rate than through traditional forms of advertising.
“People naturally come back to Medterra after they did their own research,” said Hartenbach. “Those customers are more loyal because, instead of being convinced to buy something, they convinced themselves.”
The company’s most recent education initiative is a website called Medterra University, which is aimed at educating retailers about the potential benefits of CBD as well as what makes the Medterra brand different from its competitors. While the site is primarily aimed at retailers, the company also hopes consumers will gravitate to the online education resource.
By focusing on the fundamentals and by offering consumers additional value that exceeds its product offering, sales are booming for Medterra online and with mass market retailers. The company is poised to become one of the top-selling hemp CBD brands in 2019.
William Sumner is a writer for the hemp and cannabis industry. Hailing from Panama City, Florida, William covers various topics such as hemp legislation, investment, and business. William’s writing has appeared in publications such as Green Market Report, Civilized, and MJINews. You can follow William on Twitter: @W_Sumner.