The timing couldn’t have been worse. On March 1, 2020, Colorado start-up Remedy + launched its very first line of hemp-based sports performance products at the US Open Paddle Tennis tournament. A salesperson had just been hired to put CBD-infused gels, tinctures, ointments and other products on the shelves of country club stores and spas.
Within weeks, Covid shut down the country.
Suddenly there were no more stores to set up the displays that would showcase Remedy + to the company’s target consumer, said company co-founder Tom Kurz, “the country club athletes – people in the community. forty who still want to compete “. The natural place for a hub would be online advertising, he said, but major social media and advertising companies like Facebook and Google don’t allow any CBD brand advertising, even hemp products. which do not contain any psychoactive THC ingredients. found in close cousin marijuana.
With no retail presence or available online advertising, the company turned to informative web content to showcase the brand, said co-founder Chris Peck. Remedy + funded research at the University of Colorado at Boulder to study the interaction between CBD and other drugs to help people decide which ones could be safely taken together. The company has also ordered CBD content and sports performances from Instagram and Facebook. She is currently considering adding a YouTube video channel.
However, with the stimulation of online demand had to be accompanied by the ability to deliver these products to customers. With their initial golf and tennis store distribution plan on hold, Kurz and Peck turned to their network of investors to fund an e-commerce site that would serve as their new distribution method.
During the shutdown, the company also took the time to study and better understand the distribution channels it wanted to enter beyond country club stores. Convenience stores could stock their protein bar and two ounces of caffeine as alternative purchases to crisps and soda, Kurz said. Spas may want to display the entire product line, including tinctures and ointments, in one display. Diving deep into the relationships that needed to be formed and the physical delivery mechanisms required, helped founders get their products to the shelves faster when businesses reopen, they said.
There are still few rules regarding the ingredients in CBD products and their labeling, so earning the trust of customers, distributors and sellers is a big part of the company’s strategy, Kurz said. “We are transparent about our ingredients and our tests,” he said. When the market grows and sellers are looking for three or four brands to put on their shelves, Peck added, “We try to position ourselves to be at the forefront. “
Pandemic or not, “it’s still the first or second round” of the CBD market, and the situation is changing rapidly, Peck said. There are currently a large number of brands, he said, but in a year or two it should only be half.