an industry leader growing a loyal customer base
Ahead of the curve and anticipating future growth, DreamFields is cultivating unique products to capture further markets
DreamFields was founded in 2016 by a group of college friends who made their mark in the music and entertainment industry for over 15 years. Always ahead of the curve and with focus on products to suit every taste, DreamFields has been able to capture a loyal customer base, and while adhering to its original business model, continues to expand and provide more innovative products. Expansion to new markets is also top of mind for DreamFields.
DreamFields was able to capture the cannabis market in California, which is the largest market in the world. To establish this footing in the market, the company built their manufacturing and distribution capacity from the group up, and established one of the most recognizable brands within the industry. Once this was put in place, the company could diversify its offering and expand its products from pre-roll to vapes.
DreamFields is headquartered in Southern California and runs operations in Michigan and Arizona, which means its marketing, sales, manufacturing, and distribution approach needs to work within the legal status of cannabis in those states.
“Our product is well placed for cannabis purists and novices. When somebody looks at our product, we’ve made it is attractive, clear, and concise in its language and allows everyone to know what they’re consuming, whether it is a sativa or indica dominant strain, or a hybrid,” says Carlos Hoyos, Vice President of People & Culture at Dreamfields.
The consumer base of the cannabis market wants to be informed about the product they have purchased.
Cannabis genetics or strains can vary widely, so it’s important to be able to depend on label information about what the flower contains. Our main priority is ensuring consumer safety which is why all our cannabis materials are tested pre and post-production. Another crucial factor within marijuana production is ensuring consistency in flavors, THC and CBD content, and more.
“When looking at Red Bull or Coca-Cola, consumers have an expectation of what it tastes like, looks like, feels and smells like. We’ve dialed in all our processes to emulate these brands, so every time our consumers open a jar of Jeeter, they know exactly what they are getting,” says Hoyos.
As a cannabis company, traditional media and advertisement outlets aren’t always available. This means they’ve had to adapt a genuinely innovative marketing strategy.
The cannabis industry still has many restrictions and stigmas. To make a positive marketing impact, DreamFields, with its ties to the music and entertainment industries, has developed immersive experiences for its consumers.
This means building excitement for the brand on-site at the dispensaries, turning local shops into works of art with bespoke display systems, and brokering deals with these local outlets.
Taking advantage of experiential marketing tactics, DreamFields has engaged in pop-up tours allowing them to create genuine consumer bonds. For those campaigns, the brand uses imagery that inspires nostalgia. Tapping into this visual asset, they created a campaign about a recently bygone era of using Blockbuster-inspired artwork.
For their first pop-up tour, they partnered up with dispensaries that would be converted into looking like old-school video stores, like Blockbuster. The campaign tour had ambassadors who tagged along on the tour and appeared at the venues.
The visual theme was carried through to outfits the staff at these dispensaries would wear. Clients could select old-school DVDs, and if they purchased enough of the product, they would be rewarded with a branded blanket.
The last pop-up tour was so successful that the company has ventured into a new immersive marketing experience tapping into the nostalgia of the American Corner Mart. Inspired by the corner store aesthetic of the 80s, the team have recreated a DreamField world with grocery bags and branded hotdog rolling machines that roll the company’s product.
The company recently moved its operational base to a new 80,000-square-foot facility in the City of Desert Hot Springs, which used to just be a cultivation operation and is now its primary operation center in California.
DreamFields employs over 1,100 people in California, and in Michigan, and Arizona, around 300 per state.
Along with the significant investments into real estate for the business, the company has also invested in increasing its operational efficiency to ensure that the market gets the product they deserve.
But above all else, DreamFields is focused on investing in its most important asset, its people. This extends from onboarding to training and developing individuals to ensuring everyone has the tools to accomplish their jobs more efficiently.
It also includes upskilling and grooming leaders within the company and investing in them to be the best they can be.
“As the VP of people and culture, I look at our people and their ability to grow within our operation as an important investment to make sure that we’re able to fill high level roles with our own employees in the future,” says Hoyos
All this effort ensures that employees stay at the company and means that staff retention is not a problem, as it is across many industries. What has affected DreamFields is supply chain issues.
Sourcing a constant crop of cannabis is tricky. Local flower suppliers must test their crops and comply with rigorous internal and state standards for testing.
The raw material can be sent to the manufacturing process only once the product has undergone these tests. And the supply chain for the cannabis industry is different depending on what state you’re dealing with.
Another element is finding cannabis growers who can meet DreamFields quality standards and can provide the volumes needed for the consumers.
However, in 2022, international suppliers were the real issue.
DreamFields packaging and artwork are supplied by an international supplier, who was badly affected by supply chain issues, with lead times of three weeks turning into three months. This is an issue that can shut down operations.
“We promoted individuals within our company to specialize in dealing with these issues in the future and now plan production six to eight months ahead,” says Hoyos.
As a company, DreamFields most significant partner is the city of Desert Hot Springs, California. The city is a developing area, and together the company has maintained a good partnership which has been integral for both parties.
DreamFields has partnered with the city with most of its recent public events for the greater community. And as members of multiple committees in the city, the company has been able to advise and develop ideas around the city.
A significant project with DreamFields and the city is revitalizing the downtown area, which has meant attending meetings about what businesses should be included and what public transportation projects should be undertaken.
“I’ve been involved with the city looking at public transportation efforts. I see people walking in the middle of the desert during summer or winter, and the Coachella Valley is very hot or very cold and windy. So now we’re investigating public transportation strategies and parking that would allow for a shuttle service,” says Hoyos.
With these initiatives that the company is participating in, DreamFields hopes to establish and maintain a good relationship with the city and improve upon it, moving into the future.
And as a company that cares about families, DreamFields has ensured that all its products are sold in child-resistant packaging (CRP).
Moving into 2023, the company’s top initiative is investing in its people. The new facility was bought because it is a friendlier working environment for employees.
DreamFields is also investing in training, development, and automation for its staff. This ensures that employees have the systems and the capacity to operate at their best.
In 2023, DreamFields will be a mature company that needs to maximize its operational efficiencies, creating more streamlined, effective, and consistent processes.
The next goal is to establish a presence in every market that allows legal cannabis consumption. Last year, the company opened up in Arizona and Michigan, and those operations are now up and running.
The next step is to expand into Colorado, Nevada, Massachusetts, and others.
“There’s going to be a lot of collaboration work with local authorities to identify compliance and regulations, as rules differ from state to state, but it’s worth sticking to the rules and ensuring everything is done to the book,” concludes Hoyos.
AT A GLANCE
What: Leading manufacturer and supplier of medicinal and recreational Cannabis products
Where: Desert Hot Springs, California