Mist Smoke Shop opened on January 31st of 2019 near Signal Hill in Long Beach, CA. Since opening, they’ve been building a name for themselves in the LBC for supporting the local cannabis community. This isn’t your typical smoke shop, as they thrive on educating customers about the positive forces of cannabis. In addition to curating one-of-a-kind glassware, they’ve been hosting private smoke sessions that unite local influencers and industry members. Mist Smoke Shop is owned and operated by true cannabis advocates that boast affordable prices and incomparable customer service.
Mist’s goal is to entice cannabis lovers new and old into their shop and make them feel like they’re coming home. As frequent customers of various cannabis shops themselves, the people at Mist have made the aesthetic of their shop both visually engaging, yet relaxing and chill. They’re truly building a brand that encompasses all facets of cannabis culture beyond maintaining a retail space.
Ben, shop owner, went into detail on his plans for building the Mist empire, his private smoke sessions, as well as what he strives to give anyone that enters his head shop. With a longstanding history with real estate and interior design, he has made strategic efforts to create a unique experience for the consumer.
It all began when a friend of Ben’s who owns several convenience stores had an extra retail space he wasn’t using. “Hey man, you should open a smoke shop,” Ben said was all it took for him to pivot away from flipping houses to start his first brick-and-mortar business. He then began researching the most popular glass pieces and bringing in rare items to the shop. Simultaneously, he’s been building the brand’s name through custom merchandise and fueling the local cannabis community.
Not Your Regular Smoke Shop
There really isn’t any other smoke shop in the Long Beach area offering this kind of service to the cannabis lovers of the LBC. Ben said, “we break the stigma of explaining the medicinal quality of cannabis, and how it’s open to different people and personalities.” Ben and his staff permeate the truth that cannabis culture is inclusive and not exclusive. “We’re trying to embrace the idea that the plant isn’t the problem.” By giving knowledge to the consumer Ben and his brand seek to “explain to people what cannabis can really do. We want to build a community that will help break the stigma.”
Artisanal Glass And Pipes
By researching trending types of glassware, Ben has made strategic partnerships with glassblowers to produce his own unique pieces for his shop. In addition to curating world-class glass in-store, Mist Smoke Shop has a thriving online store. There you can find the newest and most cutting-edge smoking pieces. Ben said, “we start moving glass and getting designs based on online research through trends and social media.”
Private Smoke Seshes
Once a month, Ben has been bringing loyal customers, influencers, marketers, and industry members to his lounge at the shop to sesh and chop it up. The time and date of these sessions vary, and they are one hundred percent private events. “We bring in influencers and local regulars, and people with the right mindset that encourage good conversation,” Ben said. There’s an at-home atmosphere at Mist Smoke Shop that you can feel right when you enter. If you get the invitation to one of their sessions you’re sure to meet valuable people to network with.
Rare items are typical fare at the shop, among which are exotic sodas from Asia and Canada. “I did research and saw an opportunity to get in [exotic sodas.]” Ben brought up that by bringing more rare items into the store, he’s further enticing customers to make the 15-20 minute drive to his shop. He made note that people will always come back to a place where they can find something special like exotic beverages.
Within the next year and a half, Ben is going to open another store in the Los Angeles-area. “The plan is to franchise the smoke shop, have another store in LA, and focus on those two stores,” he said. After building the brand for a while, he went on to say that “if the forecast is good, maybe we can open a third.” Ben approaches owning and operating a retail space differently because of his background in real estate.
Typically, when you buy up a commercial unit, you rent it out. “I want to buy the unit myself instead, and run businesses through there,” Ben said. With his eyes on the prize, Ben is quickly building the Mist Smoke Shop empire around intelligent market research, positive education and encouragement to unite all cannabis lovers. With the addition of his killer original glass and rare in-shop items, he’s sure to keep growing rapidly.
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