Kate Gunning (Crush Brands) - Let's Go For It

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This is a podcast episode titled, Kate Gunning (Crush Brands) - Let's Go For It. The summary for this episode is: <p>Ajay and Vincent chat with Kate Gunning, the Founder and Chief Marketing Advisor at Crush Brands. She talks about how curiosity is the key to effective marketing, and how technology and Social Media can help drive consideration for brands. Ajay attends Halloween parties, and Vincent can't handle a real drink.</p>
Intro to the episode
00:34 MIN
Learn about Kate
02:40 MIN
Highlights for Kate, in the last couple of years
04:26 MIN
Important skillsets for a marketer
02:24 MIN
Leveling yourself up
02:06 MIN
Staying on top of industry trends
03:03 MIN

Audio: Maybe big data has gotten too big. Whether you're a B2B marketer or a consumer brand, your data needs to be viable, relevant and accessible so that Stirista can help you retain customers, acquire customers and make it personal.

Vin: Welcome to the Marketing Stir podcast by Stirista, probably the most entertaining marketing podcast you're going to put in your ear. I'm Vin, the producer here at Stirista. The goal of this podcast is to chat with industry leaders and get their takes on the current challenges of the market, and we'll have it little fun along the way. In today's episode, Ajay and Vincent chat with Kate Gunning, the Founder and Chief Marketing Advisor at CRUSH BRANDS. She talks about how curiosity is the key to effective marketing and how technology and social media can help derive consideration for brands. Ajay attends Halloween parties and Vincent can't handle a real drink. Give it a listen.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to another episode of Stirista's The Marketing Stir. We are well into season three. Do you believe it? Season three. We were like, " Wait a minute, let's start this podcast and let's see what happens." And now, season three, hundreds of episodes, people recognizing us at the conferences now. Thank you. People are like, " Wait a minute, I listen to your podcast. Are you and Ajay like that in real life?" I'm like, " What does that even mean? Of course, we are!" But I'm actually even more excited in real life when you meet me. People are like, " Wow, you don't really turn that off, do you?" I do not. It annoys a lot of people. Just ask my wife. Ladies and gentlemen, it's so good to be here again. Let's talk about Stirista really quick. If you're just listening to The Marketing Stir, we have conversations here. If we met our guest at a conference, at the cocktail hour, or just a networking event, that's how we talk to our guests. We love our guests on the show. And I love my co- host on the show. We'll get to him in a moment. But Stirista, real quick, let's pay the bills here. I'm kidding. There's no bills to pay. I just like to say that. We are a marketing technology company. We own our own business- to- business data, our own business- to- consumer data. We own the technology that helps push to that data. Let us know if you need email marketing acquisition. We have our own DSP. We own that. We have OTT, connected TV, display. Email me, vincent @ stirista. com. That is how confident I am that I could help. I just gave you my email address. The other thing I'm confident in and that I love, I told you my, co- host. We really are like that in real life. He's really like that in real life. The Gupta, we call him. Ladies and gentlemen, Ajay Gupta. What's up, Ajay?

Ajay Gupta: Hey, Vincent. I'm starting to finally feel recovered from hanging out with you last week. But now, the weekend is here almost so we'll see how that goes. Got a couple of Halloween parties to go to.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Exactly. We're filming this a couple days before Halloween here. And I'm recovering from hanging out with you. Let me tell you something. Peer pressure exists well into your 30s and 40s, I will tell you, because we were at a networking event and I had a bourbon. And I drank the bourbon. That was the first thing I started out with. Then I switched over to light beer, light beer. And my CEO says, " Why don't you drink a real drink?" And so the remainder of the night, I went back to bourbon and boy, was that not a good idea. You know who doesn't care if you are hungover the next day? Children. Children, they don't care. My two- year- old did not care. Jumped right on me. Kicked me right in the face with his little foot. And they don't care. " Daddy, wake up. Let's play Legos." It's 6: 13 AM. I don't want to play Legos, but that's how it is. You're a bad influence, Ajay.

Ajay Gupta: In my experience, the hangovers are better if you only drink bourbon neat. So I don't know what's wrong with you, Vincent, why you had such a bad hangover.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Well, because I had four beers before that. And then I mixed it in.

Ajay Gupta: Well, next time, go bourbon all night, that way-

Vincent Pietrafesa: Next time I'm going light beer. I'm going to go Michelob Ultra, followed by a water. And I'm going to take a one of those pills that make you feel better after it. But that's where I'm at nowadays. But that's what New York City does to you, Ajay. Speaking of New York City, I wish this person still lived in New York City. We haven't met in person. But I always say this on the podcast, you can tell when someone lived here, you could tell when someone is from this area. And she is no different. She's rocking it out in Austin right now, though. That's crazy. Austin's an amazing city. It's not San Antonio, where our headquarters is. I of course, in New York. But Kate and I were almost literal neighbors. That's our guest, ladies and gentlemen. Kate Gunning, she's the Founder and Chief Marketing Advisor at CRUSH. Ladies and gentlemen, warm welcome, Kate Gunning. What's going on, Kate?

Kate Gunning: Hi, guys. How you doing?

Vincent Pietrafesa: Doing great. I love the sign. 99% of our listeners consume us via audio. Maybe they just listening to our voices. I don't know. Maybe it's soothing. Maybe I annoy you, but you still listen. But CRUSH it is in the back with a beautiful light. And all that space, that's why you moved from New York City, Kate, because you now have space. And you could walk around and have a sign. But I love the sign. But let's get right into it. Tell us about this venture for you. Introduce yourself, introduce the company, and tell us what your role is, your day- to- day.

Kate Gunning: Sounds great. Thanks so much for having me. And yes, it's true. We lived one block from each other. We went to the same coffee shop for years. Never met in person.

Vincent Pietrafesa: We probably passed each other 25 times. We probably stood in line next to each other and then now we're like inaudible crazy.

Kate Gunning: That's right. Shout out to Laughing Man Coffee and our friends inaudible. We love you. And your coffee is the best. Thank you. So I'm Kate Gunning and I've been in marketing for 20 years. Yes, I'm old enough to have been in marketing for 20 years. I am the golden age of 37. And I've been doing marketing since I was 17. In college, I had the great joy of interning at McCann Erickson in New York City, when I lived in college. And I thought it was the coolest. So I started my career working in big, global ad agencies in New York and in London, which was so much fun. And then I spent the last 10 years working on Wall Street. Yes, Wall Street. I'm kind of like a monkey on Wall Street, and otherwise. But I was grateful that they let me hang out with them for 10 years in various roles. And a couple of months ago I thought what I've always really wanted to do is my own thing. And the reason that I want to do my own thing is because growing up in marketing, and especially as an agency girl, and growing up on Wall Street, I have always known intuitively that the combination of creativity and vision from founders and business leaders coupled together with capital to deploy an idea is really powerful. And I think that that combination can almost create more impact in our world than politics, et cetera. So I love the idea that every day I get to collaborate with really creative visionaries of businesses that are really trying to make an impact, figure out how to deploy their capital for marketing so that their companies can improve the lives of lots of people and change, in some instances, how the world fundamentally works. So I'm super grateful. I always figured I would do this maybe by the time I was 40. I always wanted to work for myself by the time I was 40. But then sometimes the universe is like, " Oh, actually, you're going to do it now." So here we are. The vortex opened. I jumped in. It's the most fun I've ever had. And I'm just so grateful that I get to work with people that I really enjoy. I get to choose the people that I work with. We get to choose each other, if it's a match in terms of strategic partnership. So that's been such a thrill.

Vincent Pietrafesa: That's awesome. And 17, that's an internship you're doing at 17? Talk to me about that, because one of our staple questions, Kate, is how people got started into marketing. And no one has ever been like, "I was 17. I was working for a company." I was like, " Are you even allowed to work for a company at 17? There are people allowed to work?" No, I'm kidding. But talk to us about that.

Kate Gunning: So I graduated high school when I was 17. I was one of those August baby birthdays.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Me, too. August 15th.

Kate Gunning: August 15th? I'm August 9th. Wow. We have so many things in common. I love this triangulation, synchronicity. I started college when I was 17, because I was a young baby, August. I was the last one to drive, the last one to get to go to R- rated movies, all that good stuff. And so I got pooled around everywhere. But I knew right away that I wanted to do marketing and advertising. So I started interning and really hustling when I got to school. And at one point, actually worked at a local agency for a professor of mine. Hi, Tom and hi, Melissa! We had so much fun. And I did some marketing for a local coffee shop. So I've always loved marketing. I've always known I wanted to do it. And I'm really grateful that it's been a fun career for me for such a long time now.

Ajay Gupta: Kate, welcome to Texas, too. We're practically neighbors.

Kate Gunning: Yes.

Ajay Gupta: So what's been kind of a highlight for you in the last couple of years in your career?

Kate Gunning: So the last I would say four have been really wild. I was running brand at JP Morgan for almost six years, which was incredibly fun, challenging. I got schooled so many times by so many people in really good ways. Hi, guys. And I left when I was 33 to join IEX, which is an upstart stock exchange, as their CMO. And was terrified, because I had never run all of marketing before and I was young. And I thought, " I don't know how to do this, but let's go for it." So again, beautiful match between the founders and myself, whom I still love, adore, respect and appreciate. And so that was wild to just leave JP Morgan, leave people who I was really comfortable with, who I learned a ton from, could have used them as a crutch for a while if I had wanted to, but I love to be thrilled and afraid. So I was like, " All right, let's do it!" So I joined IEX. And then COVID happened, obviously. And I came to Austin with my family and a suitcase and figured we'd stay for three weeks, just while COVID lasted and until it was over after a couple weeks, since it was only going to last inaudible.

Vincent Pietrafesa: That'd be done by Easter.

Kate Gunning: Yeah, no problem. And so we came with suitcases and then decided to stay. And IEX office never really reopened. So I just traveled back to New York every couple weeks or so to see people who were there. And it was really thrilling to have that journey as CMO. And then I got a call from a guy named Omair Tariq, who founded Cart. com, and my friend who advises him. And they're like, " We have this company. It's Cart. com. We're competing with Amazon and Shopify. And it's B2B and it's Saas." And I was like, " Say what?" And we're in Austin. And I was like, " Okay, that sounds cool." And so I decided to transition from IEX to Cart. com, which again, was kind of a thrilling move. I've been in this other place for a while and having a really good time, but then it's like you feel kind of called to take the next jump. And so that was a rollercoaster, too. But at Cart, we raised 350 million in a year, acquired 10 companies. So it was an insane journey. And I only ultimately was there for 10 months. But 10 months felt like 10 years, because of all of the work that we did. And so that was wild, too. And then again, depending on who you are and how you make decisions, maybe seems a little crazy in the middle of an economic downturn to leave your role as Head of Marketing at Cart. com and start your own advisory firm called CRUSH, but I'm a gut- oriented human. And I just know, feel confident even more and more every day that that was the right move. So really, it's all been kind of wild over the last couple of years. And I'm really grateful for that. And as a marketer, I really believe in signs, and signals, and looking for patterns out in the world in terms of what customers are doing, and how they're behaving, and how they're talking. Not just about your product or your competitor's products, but just in general, like, who are they really? I think the same thing for me in terms of my careers. If there's a sign, if there's a signal, if something's opening itself up to you, then go for it. And I want to live my life to minimize regrets. My aunt used to always say that to me when I was young. And I remember that all the time. And I think that's really why wild for me is better. So thanks for the question. It's a fun one to answer.

Ajay Gupta: It sounds like you've done quite a few things already and being pretty young yourself. I like to point that out since I'm 38. I like to fill you inaudible.

Vincent Pietrafesa: I'm the old guy on the podcast here. 44 years old.

Kate Gunning: Well, I appreciate the opportunity to feel young with this group. Thank you.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Well, we'll inaudible you're way younger than all of us inaudible.

Ajay Gupta: So Kate, having worked at different places and being very successful already, what do you think some of the most important skill sets are for a marketer that they need to succeed these days?

Kate Gunning: Definitely curiosity. I think that there are a lot of people who have learned how to do marketing. And there are now, because of technology and social media, there are zillions of playbooks that you can just download for how to do performance marketing, and how to make a TikTok at video, and all this. But anyone can do marketing. Not anyone can really delight customers and pull people in, in a way that people just can't stop thinking about the brand. And I think that what creates that dynamic between a customer and a brand is a really deep, keen level of curiosity, which you've always got to have. And also, feeling confident in having ideas that are polarizing. So I feel very much that any time throughout my journey that there's been an idea presented or a strategy presented, where everyone at the board table is just kind of neutral, like, " Oh, that makes sense," that's usually when the results are okay, moderate. But when there's real debate at the table about, " Okay, let's unpack this idea, or this plan, or this approach, these are the things about it that are wild, these are the things about it that are awesome," that tension is usually when customers are really delighted. And I really think that in order to capture those kinds of ideas, you have to be really curious. And you have to study patterns in culture, and study patterns in the business, and study patterns in your customers' buying behaviors. And that's the kind of thing that does take a level of gut orientation, that I think people ignore, because we've got so much information in front of us and we're moving so fast. So curiosity drives creativity. And I believe creativity drives business. And that's why I named my advisory firm and fund CRUSH, because I think that it's possible, no matter the category, to make brands that people can't stop thinking about.

Vincent Pietrafesa: I love it. I was just going to ask, because I saw the sign earlier. And I was like, " Wait, I want to ask the question." So you answered it. I love the name. And you touched upon it as well, Kate, but let's go into a little bit more. Like you said, during in this pandemic you were at a company that was doing really well and acquisition raising money. And you just decided just to start your own company. Talk to us a little bit more about that. What was the process like? And what advice can you give to other people out there? Someone who's kind of like, " Well, maybe I should open that franchise or maybe I should do this or start that company." Would love to hear that, because it's very unique to the people we talk to on our podcast.

Kate Gunning: Absolutely. Well, one thing I'd say is I'm no stranger to doing something during a crisis. I started my career on Madison Avenue, during the financial crisis. And my client was JP Morgan. So I'm no stranger to trying to level yourself up during a crisis. And my father started his own real estate development firm during the financial crisis also. And I was like, " Dad, are you sure you want to do that right now?" And he's like, " KT, I'm telling you, there is so much demand. I've got to do it now or I'm going to miss it." And that's why. There's so many cool projects going on. There are so many people with inspiring ideas and trying to either gather capital or deploy their capital. And they just are like, " What do I do?" And so that's the real. Real is like, there's all this window of opportunity, all these super fun conversations that occur, tons of really interesting people to talk to about their business. And so I just felt like, " Gosh, I'm compelled to help them crush it. I might as well just go and do it." And so I'm just really grateful that I took the leap, put my neck out on the line. I purposefully talked about it, I would say. I was very intentional about telling people what I was doing before I was ready, because I really believe in intentionality, and putting things out there, and what you say is what's real, and creating the world that you want to live in. So I have found myself in a position where contracts are coming in. I don't have my LLC set up even yet, but you do it. You figure it out. You speak transparently with people and then it just all works out.

Vincent Pietrafesa: No, that's awesome. And this is not my official question, but how did your dad's company work out when he tried?

Kate Gunning: My dad's company is literally crushing it. Amazing. I'm not a designer, btw, but I designed his logo when he started. I cobbled it together in InDesign, and picks forest green for the brand color, because growing up he and I always had a family color between us two. And it was always forest green, so it's our color. So I picked forest green. He still uses that logo. And he just is raking in the dough, man. If you are in the southeast and there's a port nearby, my dad's probably built the manufacturing or distribution center. So he does the big centers for all the different kinds of brands and companies that you could imagine need to ship into ports, like Savannah and Jacksonville and Birmingham.

Vincent Pietrafesa: That's cool.

Kate Gunning: So he's the man.

Vincent Pietrafesa: Shout out to dad, ladies and gentlemen. Shout out to dad. And Kate, with your business and just again, your marketing background and wanting to be in this industry, like you said, 20 years, how do you stay on top of industry trends?

Kate Gunning: Honestly, I think that they cycle. So what's really interesting is if you're an idea- led problem solver, which I like to think of myself as an idea- led problem solver, then whatever is the trend, it's not that it doesn't matter, but it's like the idea should drive what you're doing, what's in the plan. And so there's always going to be a new trend or a new development in marketing to understand. So it's a couple things. One, when you are curious, then you are observing. You're reading. You are understanding what kinds of conversations are popping up. Right now, as an example, what's the kind of controversial new age one in marketing? Web3. Some people think it's dope as shit and they're totally down for it. And others are like, " No, I'm not touching that with a 10- foot pole for my marketing plan. Don't even say the word Web3 to me. You are nuts." That is an example of, what did I say before? Something polarizing. This is not dissimilar to when I lived in London. I was running the business for some of the Nestle portfolio at JWT London. And JWT had the TV business for Kit Kat for literally a hundred years. They did, "Have a break, have a Kit Kat," all the TVCs globally. They were like, " God, it'd be really great to diversify our revenue with Kit Kat, but we just can't seem to win the social media business." This is when brands first started going on Twitter. How do I do a Twitter? And now, that seems so silly. But that's kind of how I feel about Web3 now. It's like, " How do I do a Web3 NFT? What is that?" So I think again, having a level of curiosity about what's going on, what's starting to bubble up as a new theme, like that Web3 conversation, and then trying to find people who are becoming early experts in the subject matter. So I have a whole list of people that I call on right now, who are absolute knee deep Web3 experts. And I call them often. And I ask them questions. And I ask them, " Who do you see that's doing interesting things in this space? Can you help me think through how we might utilize this in our plan for a certain brand?" So I think it's always being open- minded, not necessarily feeling like you have to jump into a trend too soon. Let it be natural for the customer that you're solving a problem for. But understand it as best as you can. And find people who are really knee deep experts so that you can tap into them when you feel like you want to leverage a trend for a brief that you're working on, or whatever it may be.

Ajay Gupta: I think you might be our Web3 expert. You are very passionate about it.

Kate Gunning: Well, I just really love the fact that it's kind of a new age loyalty program. That's just the way I think of it, It's a new way to do loyalty in 2023. And so I am. I think it's not for everyone. And it's not something that everyone's engaging with. But if you can think about building loyalty for your customer, and then again, that's just a way you do it, a lot of brands have loyalty programs. Just like a lot of brands have marketing and media mixes. So it's just diversifying your media mix a little bit, I think, rather than unpacking it like it's this whole big, scary thing. And thank you, Victoria. She is the one who inspired me around that, because she broke it down for me at lunch in New York, very simply in that way. And then ever since, I'm just thinking about it very, very simply and very practically

Ajay Gupta: Lot of sense. What's your favorite marketing campaign that you've worked on? And I'm sure there's quite a few, but if you had to think of one.

Kate Gunning: Oh, man. Okay. Well, making a beer and a fake beer ad for a Stock Exchange, I'd have to say was a super duper thrill. And that came up so organically. I traveled with the founder when I first joined as CMO. He's Irish. People love drinking at the pub when Wall Street closes. It's just this whole cultural phenomenon. Our awareness was super low in NYSE and Nasdaq. And so I thought, " Let's make a beer." And then I thought, " Well, actually, the beer could represent one of our product's liquidity," which is just another way of saying stock inventory. And so it all came together. And that was so fun. And when I was presenting it to the company, I was like, " Ooh, we should make a fake Super Bowl ad and just throw it on Twitter for 500 bucks." So we did that. And then that turned into this big thing, where we made a dark beer to represent a type of trading called Dark Trading, a Lighter Beer to represent something called Lit Trading. And it just kept extending. The thing I loved about it the most honestly, was that it just was putting oxygen on fire. It just kept breathing new life, because we put something out and let the customer just tell us whether or not they liked it or not and they loved it. So we did more. And then for Cart. com, it's so cool to join a company whose whole entire reason for being is to help brands grow online. And to grow up as a brand strategist and to be able to then run marketing for a company whose whole mission is about a brand- obsessed way to help brands make their money with their business and they're trying to impact the customers that they've created their products for, that was so fun. And so we deployed Wild Posters in all the key local markets around the country where e- com companies are headquartered, like LA, Austin, New York, love letters to the companies that we wanted to do business with. And so it was basically publicly asking companies for their business, which was so much fun. And I got to read love letters on stage to brands. And it was just a thrill to be able to think about that. What are the brands that I've loved and that I'm really fond of? And let me publicly ask for their business. And the brief to the agency was just, I want to publicly ask the top brands in the nation for their business at Cart. com and maybe make it something like the We Want You poster from the Army. That was the brief. A brief should be brief, man. And then they came up with this amazing idea to write love letters and to personalize them. And it was just so fun.

Ajay Gupta: I was watching The Watchers last week. And I don't know if you have seen that show?

Kate Gunning: No.

Vincent Pietrafesa: No, I haven't seen either.

Ajay Gupta: Oh, okay. Well, it's somewhat similar, and maybe a little bit more creepy. The premise is the guy writes love letters to houses.

Kate Gunning: Oh!

Ajay Gupta: So that's where the term watcher-

Vincent Pietrafesa: To get them to sell? To get them to sell the houses?

Ajay Gupta: Well, I won't give away anymore.

Kate Gunning: That sounds fun. That's actually a good idea, if you see a house in your neighborhood that you really want to buy, like, " Hi, Dear house, I really love your house. Will you please sell it so that I can buy it?"

Vincent Pietrafesa: Especially, as an individual and not a realtor. Yeah, that would be inaudible.

Ajay Gupta: So last question from me, Kate, and this is the most important and staple question we ask. And it has to do with sort of similar thing. I'm sure you get a lot of unsolicited messages on LinkedIn and email. What's a message that gets your attention? And what's one that you really dislike?

Kate Gunning: I dislike canned messages. I don't read them. If I can tell that they are copied and pasted, I delete them, just because I feel that it's lazy. And LinkedIn is another way to build a connection. And you would never walk up to someone that you want to be friends with and just robotically introduce yourself. At least, I don't think so. So I hope not.

Vincent Pietrafesa: You haven't met people from Stirista, some of our introverts.

Kate Gunning: Maybe not. I just think using the online space as an excuse for trying to connect with people at scale is silly. So I really love it when people say, " I saw something that you did," or, " I noticed this article that I thought you might find interesting," or something personal. And that I really appreciate. I'll give you a great example. My new friend Dan, in London, hi, Dan, he works at an agency called Small Worlds. And he and I are actually talking about doing some really fun projects together, which is really exciting for me, because like I said, he used to live and work in London. And so that's really fun. So international, it's kind of a flavor, again. And he and I were friends on LinkedIn, because he saw the posters, the love letter posters, that we did for Cart. And he wrote a very simple little message about the fact that he'd seen them out in the wild, admired them as a marketing tactic, and said, " Hi!" and I was like, " Dude, that's so nice. Wow. Thank you so much for acknowledging my team's work. We appreciate that, because we all got to lift each other up. And of course, I would love to meet with you." And so we met on Zoom. And now we're buds and we're going to do some business together. It's great.

Vincent Pietrafesa: That's awesome. When we first met, you were at Cart. com. And then we were like, " We want to talk to Kate and the work she's doing." And then when you told us about what you're doing now, we're like, " That's awesome. And we want to get that out there, because we love what you're doing." Kate, let's get to know you personally these last few minutes here. And then we'd love any news you want to share about the organization, anything there. But Kate, you moved out to Austin for work. What do you like to do in your free time, your personal time? I know you're working, working, working, but there's got to be some fun things in Austin.

Kate Gunning: Austin's so fun. And I am working, working, working. But I have always felt like work- life fluidity is the name of game. And so I love thinking about all 24 hours in the day, and not just the work day, or the non- work day and figuring that out. Look, I love spending time with my community. I think being connected to people who you really love, and adore, and feel grounded, and inspired by, is just the number one way to love your life. And one of those people includes my son, who's turning seven in November, which is so crazy. He's so creative, and fun, and interesting. And so we love to sing, and dance, and play the drums, and draw, and paint. And he jumps all over the house like a little monkey. And we just have the best time. So he's part of the idea of just community and being connected. And I love doing things with the people that I love that bring us closer together, like cooking, and playing music, and playing cards, and sitting in front of the fire. And I love my morning routine. I love stretching, and I love journaling, and setting intentions. And so incorporating peacefulness into my day is really important to me. Being out in nature, which is so easy to do in Austin, is super important to me, too. And I love to travel. I love it. If I'm not with my son, I am basically on the road. So it's such a joy. And that's again, part of just curiosity. It's like going to new places, meeting new faces, trying new food, I love doing that. And I'm grateful that I get to.

Vincent Pietrafesa: That's awesome. No, sounds like fun. The nature part, I love it. You couldn't get that much here in New York, some areas. But that's amazing. And Kate, just some final thoughts, any exciting news to share, anything, a way to get in touch with you, if you want? Don't give your email address out, like I do. Trust me, don't do that. But any news to share and closing thoughts?

Kate Gunning: Yeah, for sure. Well, you can find me on LinkedIn. And if you do. Just say, " Hey!" And you listen to the podcast and I promise I'll respond to it. That'll be perfect. I love and adore to get messages like that. I mean, the most exciting thing is that I'm really one and a half months into CRUSH and we are doing such fun work for some really awesome brands, from skincare and beauty, to CBD and wellness, to crowdfunding for climate and clean tech. There's a platform called Raise Green that you can invest a minimum of a hundred dollars on. It's founded by this guy named Franz, who was in the Obama White House for eight years. He was on the team who did the Paris Accord. He started this amazing platform. The skincare brand is called Hanni. And they started with this really cool razor. It's a weighted razor that's made of metal. And it is helping the environment significantly, because we use so much plastic in our razors. And it's got this smooth shave that's unreal, because of the way that it exfoliates your skin. So just in terms of feeling good in your skin, especially as we're going into winter, that's an awesome brand I'm so excited to be part of now. And it's been such a joy to learn from their CEO and get to know her. And I'm doing some really interesting work with some private equity firms and portfolio brands that various private equity firms have in terms of marketing round tables and bringing brands together under one roof so that they can learn from each other and share with each other. And so there's this whole community building aspect to it, which has been really cool. And I'm so delighted by all of those fun conversations. And that I get to work with friends. The CBD business is my friend's business. It's called Bud Fox. It's absolutely amazing. It's going to have this really cool lifestyle angle on one side, super mountaineer and water outdoorsmen kind of a vibe. And then there's real innovation that they have happening with cannabis as it pertains to helping people who have real severe illnesses, like Parkinson's. So that's been so cool to think about, too. And again, to work with people who have a lot of vision, and creativity, and they're trying to make an impact, that's been so cool. So I'm really excited just getting started. There's much more that I didn't even highlight obviously, but those are a couple of the really awesome, fun ones that are just really exciting for me day- to- day right now.

Vincent Pietrafesa: That's awesome. No, it sounds like some great work you're already starting to do. This has been amazing, Kate. Thank you so much for spending some time with us. That is Kate Gunning. She's the Founder and Chief Marketing Advisor at CRUSH. Check her out. Mention that you checked her out on the podcast. She'll respond to you. She'll respond to you. We won't give her email away. But this has been great. Thank you so much. That's Kate Gunning. I'm Vincent Pietrafesa, that's Ajay Gupta. This has been an episode of The Marketing Stir. Thank you so much for listening.

Audio: Thanks for listening to the Marketing Stir podcast by Stirista. Please like, rate and subscribe. If you're interested in being a guest on the podcast, please email us at themarketingstir @ stirista. com. And thanks for listening.


Ajay and Vincent chat with Kate Gunning, the Founder and Chief Marketing Advisor at Crush Brands. She talks about how curiosity is the key to effective marketing, and how technology and Social Media can help drive consideration for brands. Ajay attends Halloween parties, and Vincent can't handle a real drink.

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