180: Kim Feil on Aspire Healthy Energy Drinks’ Rapid Growth and Women in Business

Kim Feil, Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer at Aspire Healthy Energy Drinks

During this 180th episode of “Marketing Today,” host Alan Hart interviews Kim Feil, chief marketing and strategy officer at Aspire Healthy Energy Drinks.  She spent a number of years as a manufacturer, retailer, and consultant in the industry. Most notably, before turning to board service and fast growth start-ups, Feil served as CMO at OfficeMax, Walgreens, and Sara Lee.

Feil discusses the importance of key mentors in her life, specifically the influence her Dad had on her and the Network of Executive Women, an organization focused on empowering women executives and inclusion in the workplace. On the hard road to inclusion and diversity in the workplace, Feil shares, “it’s 2019 and the last Fortune 500 company not to have a woman, finally, put a woman on its board.”

Feil gives insight into the startup world through the story of Aspire, a healthy energy drink company that is quickly gaining traction in the industry. Their consumer passion is exceptionally high, and they have been able to move into major markets quickly. Aspire is on track to more than triple again this year and is in 4,600 stores. Feil shares more about their growth plans and “endgame” options.

Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today”:

  • Kim’s background in journalism and path into marketing. 02:19
  • Mentors and their importance in your career. 03:28
  • The Network of Executive Women, “more of a group that’s been mentors to me.” 03:50
  • How to get to the CMO level and stay there. 05:12
  • Combating Imposter Syndrome: “It comes down to how, especially for marketers, it’s such a combination of art and science.” 06:57
  • Kim’s career shift into board service, startup, and entrepreneurship. 08:04
  • The story of Aspire and what it is. 10:40
  • What’s the “endgame” for Aspire? 14:58
  • The difference in marketing at a large corporation vs. a startup. 15:45
  • The importance of Sampling: “Our number 1 marketing strategy.” 16:09
  • The biggest challenges and opportunities for big brands and fast-growth companies. 17:58
  • Discussing the goal of “Naturally Network.” “Their intent was to create an ecosystem of natural and healthier food products.” 19:50
  • An experience of Kim’s past that defines who she is today. 22:21
  • What three things that fuel Kim day-to-day? 25:05
  • Brands, companies, or organizations to take note of. 26:44
  • The future of marketing. 29:13

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