Skip to main content
The Brand Insider

The Brand Insider

By Steve Smith

MediaPost Editor Steve Smith's Intimate marketing, advertising and strategy discussions with top brand marketers.
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

Overcast Logo

Overcast

Pocket Casts Logo

Pocket Casts

RadioPublic Logo

RadioPublic

Spotify Logo

Spotify

Currently playing episode

Ep. 70 with Zulily's VP Integrated Customer Marketing Denise Jaeschke

The Brand Insider

1x
Ep. 77 featuring Brenda Demers, CEO, SmartyPants Vitamins
Ep. 77 featuring Brenda Demers, CEO, SmartyPants Vitamins
This week Steve has a conversation with the CEO of SmartyPants Vitamins, Brenda Demers.
22:15
January 19, 2023
Ep. 76 with Matt Carrington, CMO, Athletic Greens
Ep. 76 with Matt Carrington, CMO, Athletic Greens
This week Steve chats with Matt Carrington. Matt is the CMO ­at Athletic Greens, the decade old maker of a nutritional supplement, a category now known as green powders. The company works on a DTC model around a deliberately narrow set of products available in a single-sale or subscription model. Any podcast fans will recognize the brands, especially under its more common recent moniker, AG.
24:04
January 13, 2023
Ep. 75 featuring Joshua Fajardo, Senior Director of Brand Marketing at Zelle
Ep. 75 featuring Joshua Fajardo, Senior Director of Brand Marketing at Zelle
This week, Steve sits down with Zelle's Senior Director of Brand Marketing, Joshua Fajardo to talk about the digital payment landscape and banking apps.
28:15
December 23, 2022
Ep. 74 featuring Zappos CMO Ginny McCormick
Ep. 74 featuring Zappos CMO Ginny McCormick
This week Steve sits down with Ginny McCormick, the CMO of Zappos.
28:39
October 26, 2022
Ep. 73 with EyeBuyDirect's Brand Director, James Merk
Ep. 73 with EyeBuyDirect's Brand Director, James Merk
In today's episode, Steve sits down with James Merk, Brand Director of EyeBuyDirect.
30:54
October 21, 2022
Ep. 72 featuring Bayer's Denise Vitola, VP Brand Integration PR, Social and Influencer
Ep. 72 featuring Bayer's Denise Vitola, VP Brand Integration PR, Social and Influencer
This week Steve sits down with Denise Vitola, Bayer's VP Brand Integration PR, Social and Influencer.
23:10
October 10, 2022
Ep. 71 with Tyson2.0's Chief Marketing Officer Jackie Guarini
Ep. 71 with Tyson2.0's Chief Marketing Officer Jackie Guarini
Steve chats with Jackie Guarini, Tyson2.0's Chief Marketing Officer.
30:33
October 07, 2022
Ep. 70 with Zulily's VP Integrated Customer Marketing Denise Jaeschke
Ep. 70 with Zulily's VP Integrated Customer Marketing Denise Jaeschke
Today Steve sits down with Denise Jaeschke, VP of Integrated Customer Marketing at Zulily.
27:36
September 20, 2022
Ep. 69 with Salim Holder, Co-Founder & CEO, 4th Ave Market
Ep. 69 with Salim Holder, Co-Founder & CEO, 4th Ave Market
The pioneering 4th Ave. Market e-retailer is powered by a community of Black-owned CPG manufacturers across a wide range of product categories. Its model is deeply grounded in principles of empowering minority businesses at every level, from manufacturing to marketing to personal professional development. Founder Salim Holder discusses what it means when the retail model is truly powered by and for the community it serves.
24:50
August 25, 2022
Ep. 68 With Tim Kaufeldt, CEO of Laso Health
Ep. 68 With Tim Kaufeldt, CEO of Laso Health
Steve chats this week with Tim Kaufeldt, CEO of Laso Health.
34:17
July 14, 2022
Ep. 67 With David Johnson, CEO and Co-Founder of Genexa
Ep. 67 With David Johnson, CEO and Co-Founder of Genexa
Steve chats with Genexa's CEO and Co-Founder David Johnson.
25:07
June 29, 2022
Ep. 66 With Bayer Consumer Health's Patricia Corsi, Global Chief Marketing & Digital Officer
Ep. 66 With Bayer Consumer Health's Patricia Corsi, Global Chief Marketing & Digital Officer
This week Steve talks with Patricia Corsi, Global Chief Marketing & Digital Officer for Bayer Consumer Health.
26:56
June 15, 2022
Ep. 65 With PepsiCo's Paul Mascali, Head of Esports and Gaming
Ep. 65 With PepsiCo's Paul Mascali, Head of Esports and Gaming
Today, MediaPost's Steve Smith chats with Paul Mascali, Head of Esports and Gaming at PepsiCo.
31:46
June 09, 2022
Ep. 64 Featuring Kelly Hornick, Director of Marketing and Communications, LEGOLAND
Ep. 64 Featuring Kelly Hornick, Director of Marketing and Communications, LEGOLAND
This week Steve chats with LEGOLAND's Kelly Hornick, Director of Marketing and Communications.
24:41
May 09, 2022
Ep. 63 Featuring Erin Chin, Chief Marketing Officer, Logitech For Creators
Ep. 63 Featuring Erin Chin, Chief Marketing Officer, Logitech For Creators
Steve welcomes to the Podcast this week Erin Chin the Chief Marketing Officer for Logitech For Creators.
29:44
April 08, 2022
Ep. 62 Featuring Pearl Servat, Head of Brand Marketing and Demand Generation at Visible Wireless
Ep. 62 Featuring Pearl Servat, Head of Brand Marketing and Demand Generation at Visible Wireless
This week Steve chats with Pearl Servat, Head of Brand Marketing and Demand Generation at Visible Wireless
31:35
April 08, 2022
Ep. 61 With Berlin Brands Group's General Manager and President Bob Land
Ep. 61 With Berlin Brands Group's General Manager and President Bob Land
The Amazon ecommerce ecosystem continues to breed fascinating marketing and business offshoots, not the least of which is the so-called "Amazon roll-up." These companies, like Berlin Brands Group (BBG) acquire digital native brands that invented themselves principally to sell in Amazon. As General Manager and President Bob Land tells us, this is a wild world unto itself that challenges many preconceptions about what constitutes brand and valuations.
30:33
April 08, 2022
Ep. 60 Featuring CMO Robin Zucker of Codecademy
Ep. 60 Featuring CMO Robin Zucker of Codecademy
Codecademy's CMO Robin Zucker is marketing the brand at the intersection of performance and storytelling. The company’s new tagline, “live by your own code,” aspires to make the brand more personal than transactional.
31:18
April 08, 2022
Ep. 59 Featuring Tom Arrix, Founder/CEO of Get Joy & Co
Ep. 59 Featuring Tom Arrix, Founder/CEO of Get Joy & Co
This week Steve talks with Tom Arrix, Founder/CEO of Get Joy & Co.
26:26
February 10, 2022
Ep. 58 With R. J. Ancona Vice President & General Manager, B2B, Global Merchant & Network Services at American Express
Ep. 58 With R. J. Ancona Vice President & General Manager, B2B, Global Merchant & Network Services at American Express
Steve chats this week with R. J. Ancona Vice President & General Manager, B2B, Global Merchant & Network Services at American Express.
28:15
January 20, 2022
Ep. 57 Featuring Helaine Knapp, Founder and CEO, CityRow
Ep. 57 Featuring Helaine Knapp, Founder and CEO, CityRow
Steve starts the New Year talking with Helaine Knapp, the Founder and CEO of CityRow.
24:56
January 04, 2022
Ep. 56 Featuring Co-founder of Resident Home, Eric Hutchinson
Ep. 56 Featuring Co-founder of Resident Home, Eric Hutchinson
This week Steve chats with Eric Hutchinson, the Co-founder of Resident Home.
25:58
December 28, 2021
Ep. 55 With Alex Chahin, Sr. Director, Product Marketing at hims & hers
Ep. 55 With Alex Chahin, Sr. Director, Product Marketing at hims & hers
Steve talks this week with Alex Chahin, Sr. Director, Product Marketing at hims & hers.
23:55
December 22, 2021
Ep. 54 Featuring Jerry Hsiao, Canon USA's Director of Business Planning
Ep. 54 Featuring Jerry Hsiao, Canon USA's Director of Business Planning
This week we welcome Jerry Hsiao, the Director of Business Planning at Canon USA to discuss how Canon’s business solutions is reorganizing its marketing around these new patterns and gives us a chance to dig into some of these changes and to understand what the implications are for marketing going forward. Jerry's been with Canon over eight years, previously worked at Luminous Brands, Nielsen and Clorox.
30:58
December 16, 2021
Ep. 53 Featuring David Marine, CMO, Coldwell Banker
Ep. 53 Featuring David Marine, CMO, Coldwell Banker
In this episode, Steve chats with Coldwell Banker's CMO, David Marine.
28:16
December 13, 2021
Ep. 52 With Melissa Menta, SVP of Marketing and Communications for Peanuts Worldwide
Ep. 52 With Melissa Menta, SVP of Marketing and Communications for Peanuts Worldwide
Steve gets the old Peanuts gang back together to chat with Melissa Menta, SVP of Marketing and Communications for Peanuts Worldwide! 
25:45
December 02, 2021
Ep. 51 With Amelia Thorn, Ancient Nutrition's VP Brand Marketing
Ep. 51 With Amelia Thorn, Ancient Nutrition's VP Brand Marketing
Steve talks with Amelia Thorn, VP Brand Marketing at Ancient Nutrition.
25:24
November 23, 2021
Ep. 50 Featuring PlantStrong Founder Rip Esselstyn
Ep. 50 Featuring PlantStrong Founder Rip Esselstyn
Steve chats with PlantStrong Founder Rip Esselstyn.
25:30
September 28, 2021
Ep. 49 With Nutrabolt CMO Rajaa Grar
Ep. 49 With Nutrabolt CMO Rajaa Grar
Steve chats this week with Rajaa Grar, CMO of Nutrabolt.
23:19
September 22, 2021
Ep. 46 With Jed Berger, CMO of Foot Locker
Ep. 46 With Jed Berger, CMO of Foot Locker
The future of the physical retail experience may be murky, but product innovation, creativity, relevance and meaning will always drive consumer interest. Foot Locker has launched literally hundreds of sneaker models in the last year, many tied to everything from human rights issues to breakfast cereal, sports stars to Gummy Bears. It is part of a customer acquisition and brand building strategy that brings CMO Jed Berger and his team to the center of the product development cycle. What does it take to reorganize thinking, people and budgets around a product-centric marketing model?
26:29
September 16, 2021
Ep. 45 With JewBelong co-founder Archie Gottesman
Ep. 45 With JewBelong co-founder Archie Gottesman
Even a crusty, jaded critic of the advertising industry like Steve Smith can be a sucker for a great ad concept like JewBelong out-of-home campaigns on New York streets. Steve chats with JewBelong co-founder Archie Gottesman about a range of things — from the real impact of cause-related advertising, being snarky on bus shelters, and rebranding an entire religion.
33:02
August 19, 2021
Ep. 44 Featuring Kath Swallow, Global Brand VP for Rexona at Unilever
Ep. 44 Featuring Kath Swallow, Global Brand VP for Rexona at Unilever
Grounded in pandemic and post pandemic behavior research, Rexona/Unilever's Degree deodorant brand's Move Again effort is as you'd expect from the CPG giant, a massive multimedia rollout leveraging every imaginable channel. One of their new buzzwords is "un-missable," says Kath Swallow, Global Brand VP for Rexona at Unilever. But that doesn't mean relentless TV spots and billboard coverage. As she tells Brand Insider this week, it's as much about creating critical partnerships: from a famous drag celeb to video games. It even includes a Degree branded "Pit Mobile" making neighborhood stops with truly un-missable pit-related imagery.
24:44
August 19, 2021
Ep. 48 with Vivid Seats CEO Stan Chia
Ep. 48 with Vivid Seats CEO Stan Chia
Steve chats this week with Vivid Seats CEO Stan Chia.
26:16
August 12, 2021
Ep. 43 Marketing avocados with Mission Produce head of marketing and communications, Denise Junqueiro
Ep. 43 Marketing avocados with Mission Produce head of marketing and communications, Denise Junqueiro
If Millennials have a signature food, then surely avocados would be it. But herein lies the opportunity, says Mission Produce head of marketing and communications, Denise Junqueiro. Mission is a farm-to-grocery avocado brand that is both b2b and increasingly b2c. By focusing on creative product development, especially around Millennial lifestyle needs, Mission is working a different lane of produce branding and trying to de-commoditize this trendy fruit. If like me, avocado minis or even the prospect of avocado baby food sounds even zanier than avocado toast, think again, Boomer.
22:11
August 12, 2021
Ep. 42 With Liza Darnell, Senior Director at Clif Brand Portfolio
Ep. 42 With Liza Darnell, Senior Director at Clif Brand Portfolio
Post-pandemic ad campaigns are trying to thread the needle - find ways of gently alluding to the past 15 months of lockdowns, grief and social unrest, while pointing towards brighter days. Clif's "Move the World" messaging wraps such a light note of return-to-normal in purposeful branding as well as a an overall theme of adventure. As Senior Director, Clif Brand Portfolio, Liza Darnell explains, it is designed for open interpretation around evolving notions of adventure, movement and social impact. In many ways, "Move the World" recalls the fleeting age of the big idea but executed across a wide range of video, display and marketing partnerships. The big idea meets the fragmented customer journey.
27:51
August 12, 2021
Ep. 41 Featuring Bob Evans Farms CMO, Thyme Hill
Ep. 41 Featuring Bob Evans Farms CMO, Thyme Hill
Even locked-down seekers of eating therapy eventually crave variety. Apparently, Bob Evans Farms is on it. The company famous for freezer aisle comfort dishes like mac and cheese sides and  countless sausage varieties, recently launched a new line of riffs on classics and breakfasts. CMO Thyme Hill discusses how product development is central now to CPG marketing.
28:53
August 10, 2021
Ep. 40 With El Pollo Loco’s CEO Bernard Acoca
Ep. 40 With El Pollo Loco’s CEO Bernard Acoca
MediaPost's Lisa Singer fills in this week for Steve. El Pollo Loco is in growth mode. With several recent record breaking weeks, the company sees itself entering a growth trajectory that includes new audiences, deepening digitization and enhancing its brand position. Lisa chats with CEO Bernard Acoca about how the brand learned from and even grew during the pandemic year.
25:15
August 09, 2021
Ep. 47 Featuring Michele Waits, Vice President of Marketing and Commercial Support at illy
Ep. 47 Featuring Michele Waits, Vice President of Marketing and Commercial Support at illy
This week, Steve Smith welcomes  to the Brand Insider Michele Waits, she's the Vice President of Marketing and Commercial Support at illy, the coffee makers. illy caffè is an 80 year old premium coffee brand, many of you will be very familiar with that red logo that you see on the store shelves. The company just launched a major multi channel campaign, it calls, “Welcome on the Road to Happiness.”
24:36
August 06, 2021
Ep. 39 Featuring Danielle Parra, Head of Marketing and Culinary for McAlister’s Deli
Ep. 39 Featuring Danielle Parra, Head of Marketing and Culinary for McAlister’s Deli
Steve welcomes Danielle Parra, Head of Marketing and Culinary for McAlister’s Deli to this week's QSR focused Brand Insider podcast. 
31:13
May 27, 2021
Ep. 38 Featuring Ryan Dillon-Curran, Peloton's Senior Director of Global Product Marketing
Ep. 38 Featuring Ryan Dillon-Curran, Peloton's Senior Director of Global Product Marketing
Few D2C brands have experienced the rapid success and cultural profile of Peloton. But how does the company that introduced many of us to HIIT cardio training handle its own high intensity growth. Company veteran Ryan Dillion-Curran discusses with Steve how the brand has evolved in response to data, product usage and market needs and is creating forward looking teams that bake “slack and flexibility” into the Peloton marketing infrastructure. Find out why one of D2C’s biggest success stories recommends emerging brands think more like a CPG.
29:22
May 21, 2021
Ep. 37 Featuring Stephanie Perdue, VP of Brand Marketing for Chipotle
Ep. 37 Featuring Stephanie Perdue, VP of Brand Marketing for Chipotle
Steve chats with Stephanie Perdue, VP of Brand Marketing for Chipotle.
27:02
May 13, 2021
Ep. 36 With Joe Tertel, Director, Digital Media, Rite-Aid
Ep. 36 With Joe Tertel, Director, Digital Media, Rite-Aid
One of the largest drug store chains in the US puts email at the center of customer experience. Digital Director Joe Tertel explores how email helps him build his workflows and scenarios that extend out to the full customer journey, whether on site, on social, and even in display advertising. This is next generation messaging, where email is made central to a holistic view of the customer journey that touches all media.
28:21
April 21, 2021
Ep. 35 Featuring Jim Simon, Founder, CEO, JiMMYBAR!
Ep. 35 Featuring Jim Simon, Founder, CEO, JiMMYBAR!
Building a CPG brand within the Grocery Industrial Complex can be daunting and costly. Jimmy Bars co-founder explores with Steve the innovative distribution and marketing channels that has helped build the brand without breaking the bank.
29:53
April 19, 2021
Ep. 34 Email Marketing with RentPath's Chester Bullock and Purple's Scott Cohen
Ep. 34 Email Marketing with RentPath's Chester Bullock and Purple's Scott Cohen
Email is 50 years old this year. Its resilience is so familiar that we don't even bother joking about the many "Email is Dead" eulogies. In advance of EIS, this week's Brand Insider calls on two of the EIS veterans (Chester Bullock at RentPath and Scott Cohen at Purple) to reflect on how the pandemic and looming changes in digital tracking will bring email back to the center of marketers' planning.
38:14
April 09, 2021
Ep. 33 with David Prokupek, CEO of Ideal Image Med Spa
Ep. 33 with David Prokupek, CEO of Ideal Image Med Spa
Steve chats with David Prokupek, who is the CEO of Ideal Image Med Spa, a medical aesthetics company with well over 150 locations in the US. Their services include laser hair removal, cool sculpting and botox, all administered by medical professionals. It also uses a virtual consultation system to leverage the digital channel in preparation for the engagements. The company has seen growth this year as it quickly pivoted to a telehealth consultation platform that now serves over 25,000 people a month. 
Prior to Ideal Image, David himself helped build both the Smashburger QSR brand and Jackson Hewitt tax service brands.
29:04
March 19, 2021
Ep. 32 featuring John Sheldon, CMO, SmileDirectClub
Ep. 32 featuring John Sheldon, CMO, SmileDirectClub
As the oral care upstart SmileDirect grows its brand into new product lines and customers, the company is bringing its performance-oriented media to every screen. CMO John Sheldon explores how a CPM-centric approach continues to perform across linear, CTV and social. Likewise, highly modular creative and leveraging shorter formats are giving SmileDirect the flexibility to grow despite the opaque outlook for 2021 media.
25:22
March 04, 2021
Ep. 31 with Ulli Haslacher, President and Founder, Pour Moi
Ep. 31 with Ulli Haslacher, President and Founder, Pour Moi
Steve chats with Ulli Haslacher, President and Founder, Pour Moi
29:45
February 26, 2021
Ep. 30 with Kayla Rochkin, VP of Marketing at TREC Brands
Ep. 30 with Kayla Rochkin, VP of Marketing at TREC Brands
Kayla Rochkin is the VP of Marketing at TREC Brands, a purveyor of cannabis based products in the Canadian market. TREC is only a few years old, but has already established several cannabis brands and we'll discuss how the company targets distinct consumer segments, with different branding and packaging.
28:25
February 11, 2021
Ep. 29 with Stephanie Synclair, founder of the luxury tea and accessories brand LaRue 1680
Ep. 29 with Stephanie Synclair, founder of the luxury tea and accessories brand LaRue 1680
Steve chats with Stephanie Synclair, most recently, founder of the luxury tea and accessories brand LaRue 1680. But this is just the latest project for the serial entrepreneur, author, and business coach. Her book ‘Shut Up and Do the Work: The entrepreneur's guide to creating massive success’ was published in 2016.  This discussion with Stephanie will focus on the topic of building a new brand. 
32:11
February 01, 2021
Ep. 28 with Director of CRM at Helix, Laur Fiatoa
Ep. 28 with Director of CRM at Helix, Laur Fiatoa
Helix Sleep has refocused a lot of its data-driven strategy to LTV and launched several new brands, among them the AllForm sofas. Director of CRM at Helix, Laur Fiatoa, tells us how emphasizing an LTV strategy for growth involves changes to messaging, the channels you use, and even the internal “data culture” that drives it all.
33:30
February 01, 2021
Ep. 27 with Alex Reed, co-founder and CMO of Truman's
Ep. 27 with Alex Reed, co-founder and CMO of Truman's
Alex Reed, co-founder and CMO of D2C cleaning product brand Truman's, is one of the only marketers to give an honest and nuanced answer to my cynicism about "brand love."  He gets it. There really is no love lost between most of us and the spray we use to clean our counter top. Nevertheless, Truman's is trying to build a different kind of CPG relationship with consumers without ad-bombing Instagram.
33:25
February 01, 2021
Ep. 26 with Tara McGowan, Founder and CEO of ACRONYM
Ep. 26 with Tara McGowan, Founder and CEO of ACRONYM
McGowan is a longtime evangelist of digital marketing in Democratic campaigning, as she also ran digital advertising for the massive Priorities USA PAC during the 2016 cycle. Political wonks will want to lean back for this full podcast version, where McGowan reflects on how the consultancy/agency structure in political campaigning skews media allocation and stifles innovation. It echoes eerily sentiments we hear increasingly in the general consumer brand world.
38:60
January 08, 2021
Ep. 25 with Matthias Paisdzior, Head of North America for GOT BAG
Ep. 25 with Matthias Paisdzior, Head of North America for GOT BAG
Matthias Paisdzior is the Head of North America for GOT BAG, a Germany-based company that makes backpacks and bags out of recycled ocean plastic.  It was a passion project that started in 2016, and has become a business and the mission. Matthias’s job is to bring that brand over the plastic-choked Atlantic to the US shores and launch here.
30:36
December 23, 2020
Ep. 24 Featuring AJ Bhatia, CMO of Pier 1
Ep. 24 Featuring AJ Bhatia, CMO of Pier 1
Pier 1 closed all of its retail stores by the third quarter of this year, Retail Ecommerce Ventures or REV bought the IP and the data in July. That company has been collecting a number of struggling retailers like Modell’s, Dress Barn and most recently Radio Shack, with the aim of relaunching them first as DTC ventures. AJ was the CMO of DressBarn, now he’s the CMO of the Pier 1 brand as it turned very quickly from a model almost wholly dependent on bricks and mortar to DTC. This kind of transition we're obviously going to see a lot more of and the kinds of processes that he's put in place to turn legacy brands into DTC friendly venues is really, I think, going to be relevant to almost everybody.
28:21
December 21, 2020
Ep. 23 Featuring Sal Tripi, VP, Publishers Clearing House
Ep. 23 Featuring Sal Tripi, VP, Publishers Clearing House
In its 67 year history, I don't think anyone ever accused Publishers Clearing House of elegant stylings. But those garish paint-factory explosions of entry forms, stamps to apply, subscription offers and giveaways actually worked - both as promotions and as data gathering vehicles. At a recent Email Insider Summit, PCH VP of Digital Operations and Compliance, Sal Tripi, explained how ugly can be good when it is also relevant, entertaining and fresh.
31:03
December 11, 2020
Ep. 22 Featuring Julie Roehm, CMO, Party City
Ep. 22 Featuring Julie Roehm, CMO, Party City
It is hard to think of a brand name less appropriate to the conditions of a deadly pandemic, both in spirit and business model, than "Party City." But the largest retailer of celebration supplies is weathering the crisis by rethinking its role in customer's lives both during and after COVID. That means teaching us how to party safely and often virtually. And there lies the lasting lessons of the crisis. As CMO Julie Roehm suggests, that involves a deeper, more imaginative rethinking of corporate culture, product mix, and especially content.
43:02
December 04, 2020
Ep. 21 with Chester Bullock, Director of Technology at RentPath
Ep. 21 with Chester Bullock, Director of Technology at RentPath
In this week's Brand Insider, Chester Bullock, Director of Technology at RentPath and a longtime email marketing maven, explains how the next normal will be about a long-ball brand building. RentPath operates Rent.com and ApartmentGuide.com and generates leads for property owners and marketing partners targeting renters. In our podcast Bullock shows one of the ways RentPath is trying to build brand by reducing customer friction in the lead-gen process.
24:26
November 30, 2020
Ep. 20 White Castle's Lynn Blashford, Chief Marketing Officer
Ep. 20 White Castle's Lynn Blashford, Chief Marketing Officer
White Castle was “craveable” long before the term became a QSR cliché. In fact, since its founding in 1921, the brand quietly pioneered many conventions of the industry. It tried QSR delivery in the 1930s, had drive-thrus and app-based advance ordering years before most competitors, and its product went into grocery stores over 35 years ago. Not surprisingly, this QSR/CPG hybrid was very well positioned to weather, even prosper from the pandemic year. CMO Lynn Blashford explains how a highly centralized structure of nearly 400 company-owned outlets helped White Castle make the necessary pivots. At the same time, the company structure also allowed it to fully embrace the social protests and calls for justice that from which many other brands demurred.
30:55
November 20, 2020
Ep. 19 With Nurx CMO Katelyn Watson
Ep. 19 With Nurx CMO Katelyn Watson
How much of the digital business surge this year is the result of temporary lockdown culture and how much is attributable to your native marketing genius? The path back to real life interaction is unpredictable in most categories, but is especially acute for the telemedicine sector where the hands-on doctor/patient experience is as old as Hippocrates and the days when Shamans made cave calls. Nurx CMO Katelyn Watson has been thinking ahead and is already calibrating her media buys and content with the expectation the wave of telehealth activity will ebb and diffuse eventually. Nurx is a vertical telehealth provider, offering patients online connections with their own doctors as well as prescriptions, ordering, delivery and follow-up. She is a veteran of startup marketing, with previous marketing roles at IfOnly and Kabbage.
32:10
November 13, 2020
Ep. 18 With Avocados from Mexico's Head of Digital Marketing and eCommerce Ivonne Kinser
Ep. 18 With Avocados from Mexico's Head of Digital Marketing and eCommerce Ivonne Kinser
"We don't sell avocados, and we aren't from Mexico" is the inside joke at the Avocados from Mexico brand. Since its founding in 2013, the Texas-based nonprofit marketing group has been dedicated to increasing demand for hundreds of importers and distributors and thousands of growers and packers of avocados grown in Mexico. Yet, since 2015 the group has leveraged expensive Super Bowl ad  space into exceptionally successful digital activations that have driven exponential growth in Avocado consumption. But Avocados from Mexico is passing on the big game of 2021. Instead, it is focusing  on the three months of football season before the finale by tying an aggressive shopper marketing program at point-of-sale with digital extensions. A veteran of MediaPost's Insider Summit, Head of Digital Marketing and ecommerce for the brand Ivonne Kinser explains this strategic redirection, not to mention what "ecommerce" even means to a company that has nothing for sale.
37:10
November 12, 2020
Ep. 17 Featuring Just Salad's CMO Andy Rooks
Ep. 17 Featuring Just Salad's CMO Andy Rooks
In the early days of the COVID lockdowns some restaurants and QSRs became makeshift grocery stores. They filled a gap for their customers when standard groceries ran low or just felt too dangerous to shoppers. But the self-descriptive brand Just Salad turned the idea into a new business to go alongside its 30+ store footprint in cities worldwide. This is but the first in a line of new business ideas CMO Andy Rooks and the management will be exploring in the next year. The impetus for all such innovation, Rooks says, is having genuine conversations with customers, not just harvesting data points.
26:11
October 30, 2020
Ep. 16 Urban Skin Rx founder/CEO Rachel Roff
Ep. 16 Urban Skin Rx founder/CEO Rachel Roff
It has been a wild ride this year for skincare maker Urban Skin Rx and its founder/CEO Rachel Roff. The company was launched around 2010 as an extension of her successful spa and laser treatment center in Charlotte, NC.  It was driven by Rachel's own passion for making skincare products more relevant to a wider range of melanin-rich skin. A decade into Urban Skin Rx, about half of sales are still D2C but its products are available at Target, Walmart, Ultra, CVS, and a number of other outlets. A surprise TikTok hit and the Covid-driven self-care impulse have helped sustain the company's meteoric growth. But as a white founder of a company with a 90% African-American clientele, the social protest movement this year presented Rachel and the brand with a special challenge. Roff and the company came under pressure and criticism from which it continues to learn.
30:12
October 23, 2020
Ep. 15 Purple's Omni-Channel Marketing Director James Brohamer
Ep. 15 Purple's Omni-Channel Marketing Director James Brohamer
Let's welcome to the Brand Insider James Brohamer, who's the Omni-Channel Marketing Director at Purple. The D2C mattress and comfy products brand. We've all seen Purple in every imaginable media channel.
33:24
October 19, 2020
Ep. 14 Saladworks' CMO Mark Mears
Ep. 14 Saladworks' CMO Mark Mears
Every marketer wants to crack the code on younger demos and the ways that digital entitlement has shaped Millennials and Gens Y/Z. But not many CMOs with whom I have spoken plot it as out as specifically as Saladworks' Mark Mears. He has pored over the research, and folded in his experience leading the marketing for Cheesecake Factory, Noodles & Co. and Schlotzkey's to create a concise profile of digital natives that informs all of the fast casual restaurant brand's efforts. Mears is tweaking every touchpoint with these cohorts, even the terminology he deploys across the franchise. 
42:13
October 09, 2020
Ep. 13 A&W's Director of Digital, Liz Bazner
Ep. 13 A&W's Director of Digital, Liz Bazner
In July, A&W Restaurants announced that it had it had seen same store sales increase an average of 12%, making it the third straight month of double-digit year-over-year growth. As A&W's Director of Digital, Liz Bazner tells Brand Insider this week, a lot of that growth took place when A&W's media spend went dark. There may be ominous signs here of how brand reevaluate the value of traditional media in the next normal.
36:07
October 02, 2020
Ep. 12 General Motors' David Spencer
Ep. 12 General Motors' David Spencer
MediaPost's Editorial Director Steve Smith interviews Assistant Manager of Audience Buying Strategy for General Motors, David Spencer.
49:33
September 22, 2020
Ep. 11 Haven Life's Brand Director Adam Weinberg
Ep. 11 Haven Life's Brand Director Adam Weinberg
As Brand Director Adam Weinberg tells us this week, Haven Life aspires to change the conversation around life insurance. Think confetti and hero moments rather than the end-of life euphemisms insurance ads have used for generations.
30:09
September 17, 2020
Ep. 10 Fazoli's CMO Jodie Conrad
Ep. 10 Fazoli's CMO Jodie Conrad
MediaPost's Steve Smith welcomes to the Brand Insider Jodie Conrad, who is the CMO for Fazoli's, the fast casual Italian American themed restaurant based in Lexington, Kentucky, and has over 200 outlets.
25:37
September 10, 2020
Ep. 9 NI CMO Carla Piñeyro Sublett
Ep. 9 NI CMO Carla Piñeyro Sublett
NI is a B2B company in the engineering world formerly known as National Instruments, it makes automated test and measurement systems for a range of industries, from auto to wireless, energy to manufacturing equipment. In June NI launched its rebranding campaign. NI's CMO Carla Piñeyro Sublett tells MediaPost's Brand Insider this week how the company handled that rebranding.
23:47
September 03, 2020
Ep. 7 PepsiCo Foodservice Global CMO Scott Finlow
Ep. 7 PepsiCo Foodservice Global CMO Scott Finlow
The Empathy Metric: PepsiCo Foodservice Checks In On How We're Feeling Using everything from relentless Zoom meetings to market research, Scott Finlow and his team worked on the best ways one of the world's largest CPGs could offer genuine help, not just lip service.
31:15
July 24, 2020
Ep. 6 Purple's Burke Morley, VP of Brand and Executive Creative Director
Ep. 6 Purple's Burke Morley, VP of Brand and Executive Creative Director
MediaPost's Steve Smith interviews Purple's Burke Morley, VP of Brand and Executive Creative Director.
37:25
July 16, 2020
Ep. 5 Spread the Love’s CEO Zach Fishbain
Ep. 5 Spread the Love’s CEO Zach Fishbain
One of the most popular organic peanut butter brands on Amazon started as guest favors that Val and Zach Fishbain whipped up in a Vitamix for their DIY wedding. It is a classic “you-oughta-market-this” story. Seven years later, a full line of nut and fruit spreads is a hit both as an ingredient in the wholesale channel and on Amazon. As Zach tells Brand Insider, the founding couple believes in business models that are as sustainable as their ingredients. It turns out that eschewing VC funding and focusing on B2B as well as that single Amazon consumer channel paid off big when the COVID-19 crisis strained their competitors’ omnichannel distribution networks. Spread the Love had the nutrient-dense nut butters consumers needed. And the Amazon ecosystem had the engine that helped the brand surface.
48:02
May 28, 2020
Ep. 4 Skullcandy's CMO Jessica Klodnicki
Ep. 4 Skullcandy's CMO Jessica Klodnicki
Showing the ROI of elaborate content marketing programs remains one of the biggest challenges for brands and their budgets. And one would expect these to be the first allocations  to go in a downturn like the current crisis. But for headphone maker Skullcandy, its long-planned “Mood Boost” campaign and product releases were eerily well-tuned to the COVID-19 lockdowns. And it was easy to double down on a content-first strategy, company CMO Jessica Klodnicki tells Brand Insider this week. The brand already had in place what she calls a “content-to-commerce” model that connected the dots between brand building and performance. It turns out that getting behind a timely cause while providing customers with positive messages and music has measurable ROI.
42:13
May 26, 2020
Ep. 3 Indeed CMO Paul D’Arcy
Ep. 3 Indeed CMO Paul D’Arcy
The largest job search engine comes at the COVID-19 crisis from several unique perspectives. Foremost, it is a barometer placed at the center of the record unemployment storm. As Indeed CMO Paul D’Arcy told us hours after the release of the historically tragic jobs report last week, his site is more than an activity meter around job searches during these challenging months.
30:12
May 13, 2020
Ep. 2 Slumberkins Co-Founder Callie Christensen and VP Marketing Vanessa Holfert on how its devoted social community is helping it thrive
Ep. 2 Slumberkins Co-Founder Callie Christensen and VP Marketing Vanessa Holfert on how its devoted social community is helping it thrive
Emotional learning brand Slumberkins was built for precisely this kind of current crisis. MediaPost's Editorial Director, Events, Steve Smith chats with Co-founder Callie Christensen and VP of Marketing Vanessa Holfert as they explain how the company’s roots as a homemade Etsy project and its devoted social media community are helping it thrive in a shelter-in-place economy.
29:05
April 29, 2020
Ep. 1 Potbelly CMO Brandon Rhoten on moments of disruption
Ep. 1 Potbelly CMO Brandon Rhoten on moments of disruption
While many brands are responding to the COVID-19 crisis by putting their media plans on pause, Potbelly CMO Brandon Rhoten believes in investing in moments of disruption. Listen as MediaPost's Editorial Director, Events Steve Smith chats with Brandon about these moments of disruption.
25:33
April 24, 2020