Minimum Branding for Dispensaries
Keith Wilkins
November 30, 2021

What are the 2 minimum cannabis branding things you need to have for brand awareness?

Spoiler alert: there are 3. 
Disclaimer: a modern brand has many moving parts. It includes your company values and mission statement, loads of customer research, positioning, visual identity, personality, voice and tone. We are scratching the surface of one of these parts--visual identity. This isn’t meant to be a done deal, but rather a starting point for developing your brand. 
The THREE, not two, bare bones branding items you must have in place are:
a Logo
a Color Scheme
and Fonts


I’m assuming you already have a logo of some sort. It should be simple and easy to recognize. One way to test your logo is to make it really small and see if you can still see what it is.

It’s fairly common to have 2 versions of a logo. One is a symbol and the other one is the name of your business in text. The text version is called a wordmark. Which one you use depends on the space your logo needs to fill. The symbol logo works best when it fits a square space. A profile picture, for example, is normally square. So, you would use your symbol logo. You’ve probably seen the combination of the two together in a letterhead or on an envelope. This works well because the space is horizontal.


Color Scheme

The next thing you need to decide on is your brand color scheme. If you have a logo already, you can use the main color of your logo as the primary color.

You need one primary color and between 1 and 3 secondary colors. The fewer secondary colors you choose the more impact they’ll have on your presentation. But, having options is always nice. I usually have a primary color in mind and then pick one or two secondary colors to go with it. Then I choose a dark and a light shade of the primary to use as backgrounds. Like this:
Yours doesn’t have to be all shades of the same color like the example. There is a great tool I like to use called It’s an online color scheme generator. On the website you click ‘Start the generator’ and keep hitting the spacebar until you see something you like. You can also upload a photo--like your logo--and it generates a color scheme for you.

There is a lot of research available on the psychology of color, and the emotions that colors can bring up. Take it into consideration:



Now it's time to pick your brand fonts! It's easy to get overwhelmed by the crazy number of options--don't. You need to pick at least 2 fonts--one to use for headlines and one for regular text. Keep in mind that different fonts have different vibes. Before you start looking at fonts, decide how you want your brand to come across to readers: modern, traditional, "fun", high end, low end, funky, simple or elegant. This will keep you focused when you are looking at hundreds of fonts.
You want to make sure the fonts you choose represent your brand. As a general rule sans serif fonts are clean, modern and simple. Serif fonts are usually thought of as traditional, but they can also be dope when combined with a sans serif font (yes, I said fonts can be dope).

For the headline font you can go a little crazy, if you want. Let your freak flag fly, or whatever. But try to keep your text font easy on the eyes. 

There are a lot of free fonts out there that you can use, like Google Fonts
Some great pairs from the Google collection: 

So there you have it! The three --not two-- most important pieces of the brand puzzle that your dispensary absolutely must have in order for your customers to remember and recognize you.
All you have to do now is always, always, always use them. There will be times when you won’t have the option, like on Weedmaps or Facebook, but do the best you can. Soon, depending on how high they are, your customers will see your colors or font and think of your awesome business.

I like to think of it as a kind of mind control. But that's just me. 

To make it easy for you there's a template you can download so that you can always have your colors and fonts handy. And you can share it with anyone that creates things for you.