Hemp Barons 0012: TabBrands

As a third generation marketing professional Dean Harris was shocked to discover that there isn't a cannabis brand that sells exclusively to the 7 billion dollar medical market.   He speaks to Dan Humiston on Hemp Barons about how TabBrands is using patent pending technology and non-conventional product to market channels to become the dominate medical cannabis brand. 

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Dan Humiston:
I'm Dan Humiston. And on today's show we have a third generation marketing guy. who is combining patented technology and using unconventional product to market channels to create one of the only CBD brands that are exclusive to the medical cannabis market. Let's join my conversation. with Dean Harris from TAB brands.

Dan Humiston:
Hello Dean welcome to the show.

Dean Harris:
Thanks. Thanks for having me.

Dan Humiston:
Before we talk about tab brands I read in your bio that your family has been in the marketing industry for three generations. Yeah that's right.

Dean Harris:
Three generations of marketing probably for formal marketing in the United States probably started in the late eighteen hundreds and the first person in my family to be in marketing was my grandfather who started an advertising agency in New York City in 1922. And then my father had a direct marketing agency. My wife and I had an advertising agency and I actually have two kids once in marketing and one has an advertising agency here fourth generations now for generations. It's like madmen. Yeah. My father was sort of from the Madmen era. I was kind of post madmen myself.

Dan Humiston:
Oh that's great. Well let's jump into this cab brands just taking this right. It's a patent pending effervescent cab hence the name that delivers CBD to medical marijuana patients. So let's start right off with. Tell us what an effervescent tab is and how does it work.

Dean Harris:
Well we have a what in effect is in our profession delivery system. So the idea is how do you deliver an active ingredient. In our case we're doing both CBD and something called THC which is the non psychotropic form of cannabis. How do you deliver it efficiently quickly and with discretely and with good taste. So we figured out how to do it using an app for best and tablet technology and an effervescent powder. Essentially you place the tablet in any liquid hot or cold the tablets are very small and discrete they're about the size of a Benadryl. Place it in any liquid hot or cold. It dissolves instantly and takes on the flavor of that liquid. We also have of CBD powder which in effect is our CBD formula that an in an uncompleted form and that powder is actually being used as an ingredient for many products. Pretty much anything that's water soluble so CBD beverages can contained our powder which is water soluble and in a way of delivering CBD efficiently using CBD that's non nano infused.

Dan Humiston:
I can see where that is going to be huge.

Dean Harris:
Yeah. We really have only been in the CBD side of the business for less than two months. It's been exploding in large part because CBD is so popular due to a change in the U.S. farm bill at the end of 2018 CBD as a market that's that's really interesting. It's huge. But from a marketing perspective which is certainly one of the ways I look at it CBD has been marketed all over the place. I mean there are all sorts of incredibly unrealistic claims and we feel that if we can present it in a professional transparent and interesting way we can create a brand that really breaks through.

Dan Humiston:
Yeah. I mean I love your brand strategy in one of my favorite sayings when it comes to brands is you always want to be narrow and deep and you've elected to put all your cab brand eggs into the medical cannabis market. I really think that that's a great approach. Explain to our audience though why you made that decision.

Dean Harris:
Sure. There are a couple reasons. Number one we started in cannabis with this THC a brand that we told you about called TAP relief and we looked at the market and the market for for medical cannabis thing that his states was around 7 billion dollars and there were no medical cannabis brands and we felt that if somebody was serious about using cannabis for medical purposes they wanted a brand that delivered efficacy. Many of the brands either have a celebrity name or essentially are variants of getting you high or higher and we don't think that that's what medical patients want. In fact it's interesting there was a study recently done by the University of Michigan and it said that if people that use medical cannabis roughly 44 percent of them have tried some sort of prescribed pharmaceutical and for one reason or another it hasn't worked it's had a side effect et cetera. So they then moved to medical cannabis. So our our senses from a competitive standpoint our competition our prescribed pharmaceuticals rather than other cannabis brands. And then you have the market all to yourself would you see seven billion dollars with no brands is pretty good. You know as a marketing branding guy I mean that just that turns me on big time. And then of course there's that there's another reason too and that's that for those of us that are working on this this is really purpose driven. I mean we really want to do good for people and we think that having a medical cannabis brand aligns more closely with our philosophy. And one of the things which we find fascinating is that the need for medical cannabis or CBD which offers health and wellness benefits is global. Interestingly with TBD we don't have the same sort of constraints that we have with cannabis where we don't have the same issues in terms of scale of production or licensing or access to raw materials. So we really think that what we're trying to do is ultimately going to create a. Global brand rather than a brand just in the United States.

Dan Humiston:
Well in that same kind of in that same line is getting your product to market. I also love your sort of out of the box approach to getting your product to the market. You use it to that conventional method selling through dispensaries. But you're also in some nonconventional places like senior citizen centers in assisted living.

Dean Harris:
We think that we can go to places where patients in a sector aggregated where they need our product and where there is direct medical supervision. So places like assisted living centers where essentially everybody who is there has got issues with and information appetite. And in many cases if they're in the memory loss unit our product can help there as well. We're selling in effect one to many rather than one to one. And as a marketer you always want to establish direct relationship with your consumer. We've got a much greater chance of doing that in places where patients are aggregated. Other places might include opioid treatment centers pain relief centers addiction clinics. These are all places where the patient population can use our product can be aggregated and we can ship to one place rather than many places. So it's a more efficient way of distributing. And I think also a smarter way of establishing that one to one relationship and brand loyalty.

Dan Humiston:
If you're the only one there you're going to get the brand loyalty. Like you said they're going to recognize your brand over all the other ones because sure it's established in a facility that sort of warrants trust. I think that's key to this.

Dean Harris:
Yes. And I also think that we would very much like to make our product in effect a subscription product. It's like a prescription where you get it on a monthly basis and we'd like to be able to sell our product to people on an ongoing basis. So the customer acquisition costs would be ones rather than an acquisition costs that changes every time somebody goes into a dispensary and they have to make an individual decision having that direct relationship and an enduring way of selling it to consumers we think is better for consumers and certainly provides a more profitable model.

Dan Humiston:
I think the technology is really really exciting and we didn't talk a ton about it but I think it's great now. So I think it's great that you're sticking sort of Dancing with the girl that you came with staying in the market did you want to be in and you're not going to go to different markets and try to be something for everybody. But as far as it goes. Are there going to be opportunities for people to maybe license your technology yes.

Dean Harris:
Yes absolutely we do have a licensing model and we've also tried to build our company very lightweight. So the deals that we're doing currently almost entirely represent licensing deals where we're licensing our tech either under our brand or under other people's brands on a white label basis. And in effect we're being paid on you on a royalty basis. So essentially it's a win win. It's performance space. We want them to sell more and when they sell more they earn more and we earn more too.

Dan Humiston:
It makes a lot of sense. Well we've been speaking with Dean Harris who's the CEO of Tab brands and we have all of his contact information on our website so if anybody wants more information you can use it on our website to see this.

Dan Humiston:
Really exciting stuff. So glad that you were on the show with us today. Hopefully I can get you back on again as this continues to take off.

Dean Harris:
That would be great. Thanks so much for having me on. And I look forward to hearing the podcast myself.

Dan Humiston:
Well good luck.

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