Curated cannabis service getting the word out by text

Jun 18 2020, 3:39 pm

Pre-legalization, when cannabis was a more informal affair, business was handled in person, on the phone, and often both. Most people who grew up texting a legacy dealer would occasionally find themselves using code, or simply asking, “Are you around?”

One company wants to recapture some of that magic of texting your dealer, without leaving you waiting outside a McDonalds for 30 minutes looking for a “guy.” Instead, Toke Text sends a daily offering of curated cannabis products to your phone, with same- or next-day shipping.

Once a day, those who sign up receive a single text to their phone offering something selected from the company’s list of retailers. Banking info is taken on sign-up and an order is placed and delivered quickly — usually within 24 hours, the company says.

Products range from dried flower to new beverages that can be hard to find in stock at brick-and-mortar locations.

Simple in its design and function, Jeremy Potvin started the company after initially hoping to open a store in his home province. Ontario’s now-infamous lottery system presented an unexpected hurdle at the time.

Instead, he waited and pivoted to mobile when he saw an opportunity.

“You never miss a text message. You could have been constantly missing email, and no one likes downloading apps anymore,” he told Daily Hive.

Currently, the service is currently only running deliveries in the Greater Toronto Area, including Toronto, Oakville, Burlington, Hamilton, Oakville, Mississauga, Scarborough, North York, Vaughan, Richmond Hill, and Markham, though Potvin says the goal is for an eventual expansion across Canada.

“We’re getting such incredible feedback. It’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before on email or regular eCommerce.”

By having banking details input before receiving the texts, Potvin has eliminated what he says is a key point for lost business, the fumbling for banking information.

“We ask for the most boring and difficult parts of e-commerce the day you sign up. So every retailer, every e-com retailer, abandoned checkout is the biggest headache.”