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David Coté and Julie Poitras-Saulnier run LOOP Mission which collaborates with major food industry actors to save perfectly good, but rejected products discarded before reaching grocery stores and transform them into products such as juices, smoothies, sodas, beer, gin, soaps, and dog treats.I have to be frank and I can cut this intro very short: I have a complete brand crush and to me, LOOP is inspirational on so many fronts that it would be silly to mention them and instead I will assume you will trust my opinion and dive right into this episode where Julie and David share the way they continue to build their ever-expanding brand upon purpose – with a twist of wit.
Nick Green is the Co-Founder & CEO of Thrive Market, a membership-based online platform that makes healthy living easy and accessible to all. Since launching in 2014, Thrive Market has grown to more than 1 million paying members and become a touchstone example of a mission-driven company at scale. In addition to offering great natural and organic products at affordable prices to its members, the company donates a free year of membership to a family in need for every paid membership. The business has also been recognized as a leader in regenerative agriculture, carbon-neutral shipping, and Zero Waste operations, and in 2020 became the nation’s largest grocer to receive B Corp Certification, as well as a Certified Great Place to Work.Nick and his 3 Co-Founders set out to launch a 'Costco meets Whole Foods' concept, which is insanely ambitious and a remarkable story given where Thrive is today. Needless to say, this conversation delivered many insights into today's Zeitgeist, technology, and consumer expectations, and it was an immense pleasure being able to talk with Nick about the way in which his brand continues to grow with a strong guiding star and our planet’s health top of mind.
Christina (Fagan) Pardy founded Shit That I Knit, a brand of sustainable high-quality knit-wear that one would say besides its name– although the contrary is true – has become known around the world. Christina was recently on the TODAY show and Shit That I Kit was the official Team USA brand partner for beanies and mittens this past Winter Olympics, which is rather spectacular.Here is an entrepreneur who started off with brand-thinking and learned the business side along the way. So obviously we talk about the name, how it was derived, how to say it on TV when you can’t use the sh*t word, and how not to overdo the shit pun in her brand language. Christina discusses how authenticity and transparency played a big role in her brand’s success. We chat about how to get your brand in front of influencers and celebrities, how she moved her production to Lima, Peru where she is now empowering over 200 women as part of her team and she shares her Give A Shit program with us.Another favorite episode of mine is now ready for your discerning ears!
Gardar Stefansson co-founded Good Good, a company from Iceland that makes waves around the globe with its no-sugar-added breakfast and brunch products.To me, startups like Good Good are extremely exciting since they have to embody all the components of great brand strategy: From starting with a niche product for a niche audience - while allowing the brand name and design to survive any pivots - to shared values, a great name, impactful design, all the way to creating a tribe that the big competitors can’t steal away from you. And doing so from a nordic island.Gardar and I talk about all of that and it is a wonderful story of accidental - as well as planned - brand success with many insights marketers and founders alike can learn from.
Andy Hunter founded Bookshop.org with a mission to disrupt Amazon’s book sales and put them back into the hands of bookstores. He sees his brand to be the MC and hands the mike over to the people who sell and love books. A mesmerizing uphill battle that you can witness him slowly winning by means of passion, dedication, and shared values between bookshop.org, physical bookstores, and last but not least book buyers that care about more than the lure of next-day shipping.As an author, it was wonderful to have Andy on the show, but also as a brand-builder since there is a lot to be learned from how he and his team have created a disruptive and beloved brand in just two years. 
Brice Partouche founded Satisfy, a performance fashion brand for runners to unlock the high. He wouldn’t say it, but I can: Satisfy is quickly developing into a cult brand and we spent ample time talking about Zeitgeist, culture, and community. Brice and I discuss how NFTs can be used to create access to a brand, the link between running and creativity, and how every product line starts with a story at Satisfy. A fascinating conversation.
Adam Rich co-founded Thrillist by sending out an e-mail newsletter to 600 people about things to do in NYC. Well, as they say, the rest is history. I talk with Adam about how a newsletter turned into a trusted brand and a global multi-platform media monster hitting the eyeballs of more than 300 million people a month, how understanding and sticking to your brand’s DNA is key to brand growth, how emotion and data demand to co-exist, and why thinking about your brand’s legacy must inform your brand’s every action.
Together with Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg and Michael Mohr founded Houseplant, a lifestyle brand rooted in cannabis that creates and curates thoughtful, design-led original products.By unifying the words “house” and “plant,” the brand has created an entirely new cannabis experience through curated, one-of-a-kind expert insights from Rogen and Goldberg that marry perfectly with well-designed, premium Housegoods.In this episode with Evan and Michael, we dive into the similarities of crafting a movie versus a brand, why pricing is key to positioning, how to create a welcoming brand in a misunderstood and jaded business segment, and how you can perfectly plan something yet it can still misfire. And that is in a way the challenge, but also the beauty of entrepreneurship and brand building, and I can guarantee you that you will not only gain a lot of insights into brand strategy but you will also greatly enjoy the company of these fine gentlemen on today’s show.
Doug Zell is the Founder of Intelligentsia Coffee, a beloved brand that established itself as a leader in what came to be known as third-wave coffee.Intelligentsia embodies a quest for superior quality and sophisticated design, but it is furthermore about the overall impeccable brand experience that those of us who have visited one of the 15 US locations have come to expect.Doug is a masterful brand builder and his insights from not only successfully building, but carefully expanding the Intelligentsia brand over the past 26 years is, just like the brand itself, rather illuminating.
Angela Jia Kim founded  Savor Beauty with a strong brand ethos inspired by a career as a concert pianist. What caught my eye about Angela's brand was how she checks off all the boxes a brand in her space should, and she does it seemingly with ease: farm-fresh small-batch organic products, cutting-edge technology, 100% non-toxic clean formulas, made locally, supporting various deserving communities, cruelty-free testing, minority-owned, et cetera, et cetera.And Angela understands that her brand ethos is the guiding light that makes all the difference in the why, the what, and the how of her brand. A wonderful episode, also because she shares with us how the person who sued her over her brand name gave her transformational business advice.
David Neeleman is the Founder of 5 airlines and changed the way people experienced surprise and delight by flying JetBlue. During the pandemic, he launched his latest airline brand, Breeze, and I sat down with David to talk about what branding means to him, what makes great company culture, how a book inspired the JetBlue brand, and his preferred airline naming process (in the case of JetBlue the name was derived the Friday before a Monday launch).Needless to say, an episode that is packed with insights from a truly amazing brand builder I believe all of us are thrilled to hear from on the subject of branding.
Chris Boyd is the Co-Founder of Monday, a Southern California distillery that crafts non-alcoholic spirits such as gin and whiskey. The brand is only a year old and its impeccable design caught my eye from day one. Chris and I talk about how community and authenticity are key to building his brand. And he is walking that talk as he has 1,366 shareholders to who he is reporting.And of course, we talk about the power of design and how the big question ‘why’ should be fundamental to any entrepreneur’s journey of building their brand. A spirited conversation all around.
Chris Meade, 28 years young, a Forbes 30 under 30 nominee, invented a new sport with his co-founders that mixes Four square with Volleyball.  Today you can catch Crossnet on ESPN and the product sells in over 3,000 locations in the US and around the world. Chris and I talk about naming not only a brand, but a sport, how to create not only momentum but a movement, the latest in digital marketing, and why communication, internally and externally is key to brand success and, as usual, we touch on a lot more. If you are an entrepreneur in the D2C space, listen in. If you are any kind of marketing professional, listen in. Much wisdom is to be gained from this conversation on how to get e-commerce traction in today's environment. 
Vicki von Holzhausen utilizes her background as a designer for Audi and Mercedes to innovate on materials that are truly sustainable through her eponymous vegan leather bags and accessory brand. Vicki and I discuss the weight of her brand promise, The Conscious Code, how she bootstrapped a luxury brand, how she showcases accountability by using her last name as the brand name and so much more.  
Kara Goldin is the Founder and CEO of Hint, Inc, the brand synonymous with the leading unsweetened flavored water in the US, loved by millions. Within minutes of listening to Kara, you will understand why she became as successful as she has and why she is such an influential voice in business. Kara shared an outpour of crucial lessons for both entrepreneurs and marketers alike, and her first book, Undaunted: Overcoming Doubts and Doubters, was released last October and is now a Wallstreet Journal Bestseller. Needless to say, an episode not to be missed. 
Natasha Case founded Coolhaus with her then-girlfriend – now-wife – in 2009. Inspired by her architectural background and a drive to create the best ice cream sandwich available, the couple bought "a piece of shit postal van masquerading as an ice cream truck’ on Craigslist for $2,500 dollars and towed it to the Coachella Music Festival using AAA." The rest is history. Today Coolhaus is the top women-led ice cream company in the U.S. and can be found in over 6,000 grocery stores.  Despite its growth, Coolhaus remains true to the authentic origins of the brand: represent positive change, push the envelope for the future, and create high-quality ice cream and plant-based novelties for all to enjoy. Coolhaus, with its quirky visual and verbal brand language, inspires the next generation of diverse founders, entrepreneurs, and creators to live out their dreams; and on today’s show, you will see just how they do it.
Jeremy Parker bought the url swag.com to disrupt the boring and outdated promotional products industry. Swag should stand for something new, and be bought differently, and it should be stuff people actually want to keep. That vision turned into reality as swag.com had 2000% growth over the last three years, made it onto Number 218 on Inc’s Top 500 Fastest Growing Companies list, and counts TikTok, Netflix, Facebook, Amazon, Mercedes, Starbucks, Google, and Spotify as its customers. Even during this tough past year, where events were canceled and offices shut down, the brand kept growing while most promotional product companies laid low or faltered. In the end, Jeremy's brand succeeded because he kept a razor-sharp focus on the ever-evolving customer experience. There are many brand and marketing lessons in this episode, from smart brand positioning within a commodity vertical to leading with empathy, this is an episode not to be missed.
Max Johnson built a tremendously impactful business over the course of the last 4 years through simple necklaces that celebrate female goddesses and leaders. The brand, Awe Inspired, was born out of Max's mother’s desire to empower fellow cancer survivors. From the journey of blindly walking into brand agencies on Madison Avenue to learning how personalization and shared values are key to the future success of their jewelry brand, Awe Inspired is exactly that: Inspiring. If you were wondering if taking a political stance is the right move for your brand, or how to navigate picking up the phone to call your customers to have them help you in creating the next iteration of your offering, to thinking of your brand as an actor, this episode is full of awe-inspiring – yes, I had to go there - nuggets of brand and marketing wisdom. And, who knows, you may even be moved to tears when you hear the brand story.
You must have been on a social media diet to not have stumbled upon TRUFF’s masterfully designed array of truffle-infused sauces. But TRUFF is not solely a social media sensation, you can find the brand anywhere from Whole Foods to Neiman Marcus, and from the U.S. to Australia. The two Co-Founders, Nick Ajluni and Nick Guillen, have a knack for brand building and now that I have tried their products, which of course in true TRUFF fashion they immediately shipped my way after recording the interview, I can attest that this is not just hot marketing; it is one unbelievably addictive, tasty, and unique product. I am thrilled to have had them on the show to share their branding and marketing secrets with you. We had tons of fun during this interview and it is an episode I would want no one to miss out on. 
Eddie Hartman created LegalZoom 20 years ago with two friends and built it into the best-known legal brand in the United States. LegalZoom has over 4 million customers and more than half of all Americans know the brand. I have been a customer for a mighty long time and having this chat with Eddie was just incredibly stimulating and rewarding. We talk about how celebrity lawyer Robert Shapiro became the face of the company, we discuss the impact of assurance and how ‘brand’ is the future promise about something you can not guarantee today, how the word ‘zoom’ used to stand for LegalZoom before the pandemic hit, and Eddie shares tons of actionable brand advice for any entrepreneur, CEO and CMO alike. 
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