The CBD Revolution - Through the Eyes of a Millennial
I was driving in Western Massachusetts recently and behind me was a young girl with long blond hair sporting a brand new BMW convertible. I couldn’t help but stare for a moment, wondering how such a young girl ended up in this fancy car. Was it a present from her parents? It seemed like she was older than the age of a first car from Dad at 16. She was more like early 20’s. Then I noticed something. Her vanity license plate said CBD. Dang. She probably earned that car herself. Maybe those Millennials were doing something right, my older-than-a-millennial brain said to myself. Maybe you can still get money quick with only a little effort. That’s what we lived out in the 80’s, and Millenials are all about that 80’s vibe.
This was not my first taste of what was happening here in Mass in what has all but proven that we are on the cusp of an economic boom. I had had recent CBD conversations about investors, products, growers, and seen the lines of people around the block when retail stores first opened. The county was buzzing with cannabis conversation. And it was about to land right in my lap. I had met with local business leaders and during our discussions of technology and software, there it was again, the conversation about CBD and the influx of business to the area. My wheels starting turning. So I set to work to discover what the technology pieces to this industry were all about.
This is how I ended up at the NECANN expo in Springfield, MA in June 2019. I was pleasantly surprised that I entered into a a quietly bustling and industrious exposition. I stopped at nearly every booth, transfixed by the products on display. It wasn’t all about the end user, it was a standard B2B consortium. Energy providers, greenhouse builders, software developers, regulatory advisors, and innovative equipment addressing various industry-specific needs.
One of these products was in the back corner where a large white container was obviously on display. A beautiful logo was spread across the unit and was sprinkled amongst the literature. I perked up when I met the team behind this unique looking solution, called iDry. I was very impressed. So much so that I had to interview Emily, the young and energetic young lady in charge of marketing and learn more about this small business. That is the beauty of seeing this burgeoning industry spring to life. Whether you like it or not, cannabis is like a study of capitalism at it’s best.
I learned the story first-hand from the founder, who was so excited to show me his product with a tour of the drying machine. There was so much need for a quick-drying machine that through word-of-mouth, people started to show up in his parking lot with truckloads of product to dry. This was a goosebump moment of “build it and they will come” that showcases this industry to a T.
The Interview of Emily Tuttle, iDry LLC, Director of Marketing:
You went from corporate to start up. Care to share why, and some of the major differences?
-As to the why, I was incredibly inspired by the vision of the President of the company after spending a day volunteering for them at a conference. We had a phone interview a couple days later and within the week I had quit my corporate position and gone to work for him.
As to the difference between corporate and this company, I feel much more valued as an employee, my ideas are always heard and talked through. I have a lot more autonomy and creative freedom which goes hand in hand with much more responsibility, but in a good way.
Also, Why this industry?
-I am a big advocate in this industry. I believe the medical side of things can have huge benefits for many different kinds of conditions and disorders that might usually be treated with heavy pharmaceuticals. Not to say it is a replacement, but an added source of relief for many people. I am a cbd user myself for anxiety disorder and sleep issues and can speak to how its helped me personally.
Are the rumors about millennials true - they have a completely different viewpoint? How do you market differently to them? Or is that not your market?
- I think there is a perception about millennials in the workplace for sure, I think it is a little deeper ingrained in corporate culture than in smaller companies. As far as marketing to millennials a clean and clear approach is what I find works best, it doesn't need to be flashy which I think is a common misconception. We are surrounded by flashy ads and marketing all the time, what I find works best is the simpler approach because it actually pops out as different. Our market is extremely varied actually so we market to all kinds.
What is your biggest success story as a young woman in marketing/tech? Any advice?
-Get back to me at the end of the year! I am measuring my success in this new venture as it happens, slowly with small successes. At the moment I am on a very positive path with this industry and this company so I am taking it day by day.
- The Women in Tech blog highlights women in business today, their viewpoints, and their impact on how business runs. By: Amy Patt