Brand Innovators LLC
Brand Innovators LLC
In 2014, Keenan Beasley segued from his illustrious career on the brand side, teaming with Dionna McPhatter to found The Strategy Collective, a full-service marketing firm that supports companies from start-ups to Fortune 500 in realizing their business goals. Keenan serves as Managing Partner for the venture, drawing on extensive experience managing some of the most iconic and fastest growing global brands at the nation’s top CPG companies. Prior to launching The Strategy Collective in February, Keenan was a VP at L’Oreal, responsible for leading the Garnier Fructis brand. Earlier, he worked at Reckitt Benckiser, where he oversaw Lysol and the Food Division. Keenan began his career at Procter and Gamble, where he managed Tide, launching Tide w/ Febreze and overseeing an Olympics campaign before moving over to lead emerging market development and expansion for Gillette in Brazil and CEMEA. Keenan received his BA from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a degree in Systems Engineering and Law. @KBeasley97
Henry Casanova is currently the Director of Executive Recruitment and Social Media for Macy’s Inc and has been part of the company since 2009. Prior to his experience at Macy’s, Henry occupied recruitment management positions at various recruitment firms in New York as well as here in Cincinnati. Before his corporate experience, Henry spent 9 years in the United States Marine Corps. He is holds a Bachelors in Creative Writing from the University of Cincinnati. @NYCtoCincy
Irv Cassio is the Program Manager for Luxottica’s Omni-Channel & Digital Initiatives. He has had roles from IT to Marketing in the areas of retail innovation, digital store experiences and software development. Irv has implemented unique digital experiences at flagship stores including Times Square and Fifth Avenue, implemented tablet programs enabling Omni-Channel capabilities and created digital strategies.
Irv best describes himself as a digital explorer passionate about retail and fashion. Truly a Jack of All Trades, his experience covers the areas of omni-channel, digital signage, social media, visual merchandising, marketing, e-commerce, customer experience and store design.
As VP, Ticketing & Business Development for the Cincinnati Reds, Aaron Eisel leads a team of 50+ to deliver annual ticket sales objectives and leads the strategic direction for the Reds consumer loyalty programs. Before joining the Reds in 2013 Aaron worked at Procter & Gamble in brand management, most recently serving as Associate Marketing Director. Throughout the course of his 14-year tenure at P&G Aaron held a variety of leadership roles in both Fabric Care and Home Care, focusing on retail marketing, new business development and digital marketing. Aaron also led P&G into the franchising sector, via the creation of Tide Dry Cleaners where he led the national expansion of P&G’s first retail concept. He is a graduate of Xavier University.
As head of brand initiatives at Outbrain, Kodi Foster is responsible for leading strategic account development, collaborating with Fortune 500 brand partners on their content marketing initiatives. Kodi began at Outbrain by establishing the brand’s paid recommendations business, helping to grow Outbrain into the largest content discovery platform in the world. He also spends his time evangelizing about trends in the digital advertising space. Prior to joining Outbrain, Kodi was VP of Business Development at Sahara Media Holdings, a publicly traded investment company specializing in the digital media industry. @KodiFoster
Brian Goldstein is head of Global Sports Marketing and Global Head of FIFA World Cup for the McDonalds Corporation, a position he’s held for 6 years. Prior to McDonalds he was head of Marketing and Events at Nike. He has an MBA in Marketing Management, Management and Organizations from the Kellogg School of Management and a BA from Northwestern University. @bgoldstein3
As Co-Founder of the Brand Innovators Summit, Brandon Guttman is responsible for developing premium content which means tapping marketers from the world’s most successful brands to share how they’re utilizing emerging technology and new media vehicles to build their brands and drive meaningful ROI. A prolific, highly respected writer, Brandon is an expert blogger at Forbes where his weekly contributions are featured on Forbes’ CMO Network, Leadership and Technology sections. Prior to launching Brand Innovators, Brandon held marketing and business development positions in the executive search sector where he forged relationships with some of the most influential brand marketers, technology developers and venture capitalists in our industry. @BrandonGuttman
TJ Hunter is the Director of Digital Marketing for Rosetta Stone’s Consumer Division. As Director of Online Marketing, TJ drives digital marketing strategy for the U.S. Consumer Business across social, mobile, search, display, affiliate, and digital partnership marketing channels. Before joining the Rosetta Stone team, TJ led AOL’s Renewal and Payment Marketing efforts, a $200MM P&L challenged to retain AOL’s most at-risk—and valuable—customer segments. TJ’s 15 years of success as a digital marketer are rooted in a thorough understanding of even the most technical aspects of each channel. In fact, he has leveraged his early career experience in Information Technology at FDIC, Duke Energy, Fair Isaac and BellSouth to create and implement a host of Database Marketing, Direct Response, and CRM Lifecycle programs.
Dhani Jones is a former American football linebacker who spent 11 seasons in the National Football League, playing for the New York Giants and the Philadelphia Eagles. In January 2013, Dhani partnered in Proclamation, a Cincinnati-based agency that helps brands capture the loyalty of today’s cross-cultural consumers. He is also the CEO of Hyur Staffing Services, a Minority Business Enterprise fostering cultural diversity in the workplace, and serves as Chairman of the private equity firm Qey Capital Partners. In his spare time, Dhani hosts “Playbook360” and “GT Academy” for Spike TV, and the Big Ten Network’s “LiveBIG.” @DhaniJones
Brian Kirby is the digital manager for The Wendy’s Company, one of the world’s largest quick service restaurant chains. He manages strategic growth and development of all web and mobile properties – most recently the national launch of their mobile payment platform and pilot of mobile ordering using Bluetooth Low-Energy beacons. Previous to Wendy’s, Brian worked at Hart, a full service agency, focusing on clients specific in the digital space. @brianmkirby
Before opening the Cincinnati Rockfish office in 2010, Dave Knox was a seven-year veteran of Procter & Gamble, where he was instrumental in the digital turnaround that led to P&G being named to the Ad Age Digital A-List. Previously, he served as P&G’s Corporate Marketing Brand Manager for Digital Business Strategy, responsible for digital innovation across P&G’s 300+ brands worldwide. Author of the industry-leading blog HardKnoxLife.com, Dave is widely recognized as a thought leader in digital marketing, social media, tech innovation and entrepreneurship and is a leader in the entrepreneurial community, serving as a board observer/advisor to several venture-backed companies. @daveknox
J. B. Kropp is VP-Digital Strategy and Business Development, The E.W. Scripps Company, founder, George Remus Bourbon & Rye. He joined Scripps in June to oversee Scripps’ digital entrepreneurs-in-residence team and work with its digital leadership team on strategy and execution. J.B. was prior to that an executive at Twitter,where he worked closely with client Procter & Gamble. He was also was a co-founder of Vitrue, the social media management platform recently acquired by Oracle. And he was one of the early team members who helped launch and grow the digital sharing and data company ShareThis. J.B. is a Cincinnati native and well known in the city’s startup community. He is a co-founder of the The Brandery, the Cincinnati accelerator that was a launching pad for such companies as FlightCar and Ahalogy.
Jenna Langer is VP Strategic Partnerships at Livefyre. Starting as the second employee at the company when it was founded in 2009, Jenna has built the Livefyre community from the ground up and touches all aspects of the business as it continues to grow. Her focus is enhancing Livefye’s real-time socially connected conversation engine. Outside of work she likes moving faster than walking – either on a bike, snowboard, kiteboard, or something else outdoors. @jennalanger
As Co-Founder & General Manager at Dynamic Signal (dynamicsignal.com), Jim Larrison is responsible for overseeing the company’s direction, product innovation, and market strategy to become a global provider of SaaS based advocate and social marketing enterprise solutions for leading Global 2K brands. Jim focuses on driving new businesses and markets, while guiding product innovation and customer successes. Prior to founding Dynamic Signal, Jim was an early founding member of a handful of successful start-ups. Jim was the CRO at Adify, which was acquired by Cox Enterprises for over $350MM in 2008. Prior to Adify, Jim played a leadership role, most recently as Executive Vice President of Corporate Development at comScore. Before joining comScore, he held management positions at leading US companies such as: Information Resources, Lever Brothers, and Vision Quest Research. Jim received a BS in Marketing from Bradley University and MS in Information Systems from DePaul University. Jim is an influential movie fanatic, local politico, blogger, and photographer. On weekends you can catch him on the sidelines of his son’s football or lacrosse games with a few Nikon camera’s around his neck. @jlarrison
Ernesto Levy is the North American Vice President of Marketing for Novartis Consumer Health. He is responsible for iconic brands such as Excedrin, Theraflu and Benefiber. He has been in his role for over two years and has been responsible for growing doubling the business in that span of time as Novartis recovered from a massive product recall in 2011. Previously, he spent 15 years at Procter & Gamble, leading the Oral Care (Crest, Oral-B), Beauty Care (Pantene, Olay) and Home Care (Dawn, Cascade) divisions. He has worked in his native Colombia, Mexico and in the United States. Ernesto holds Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Tech and an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin. He sits in the board of several organizations, including the Consumer Health Care products Association and the Executive Committee of Rockwern Academy in Cincinnati OH. Ernesto is married and has 3 boys.
As Vice-President of Global Media & Digital Marketing, Jason leads Brown-Forman’s approach to integrated communication planning across brand portfolios and markets. His work is at the intersection of global support for paid media, including TV, print, video, social, OOH, etc. and the influence of digital in the brand’s owned, earned and shared media. Jason has over 20 years experience integrating digital with traditional communication and innovation strategies from startups to the Fortune 100. Prior to Brown-Forman, Jason was SVP for Strategy & Development at Mad*Pow, a leading ux firm, working with partners including Aetna, GE Healthcare, McKesson and Intuit. At Humana, Jason led the adoption of digital across the enterprise. At AGI and Camping World, Jason established the Web as a primary channel for revenue and consumer engagement. His consulting background includes MSNBC, Danka and Frederick’s of Hollywood. Jason received his degree in Advertising from WKU and MBA at Indiana University SE. He lives in Louisville, KY where he volunteers with the boards of the WKU School of Journalism, Louisville Digital Association and First Tee of Louisville. @jloehr
Allen Mason is VP Strategy at dunnhumbyUSA where he oversees development of new marketing communication and media solutions. He’s been the driver behind using retailer purchase data to target and personalize media and loyalty communications as a way to transform brand marketing and has been an active thought leader on the topic. Prior to joining dunnhumby, Allen spent 15 years at Procter & Gamble as one of the pioneers of digital marketing launching and leading programs across iconic brands including Gillette, Pantene, Swiffer and the P&G Pharmaceutical business. Allen serves on the advisory board for Total Beauty Media and received his Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Cincinnati. @allenrmason
Heidi Matheys is SVP and General Manager of DIY Channels for Valvoline, a division of Ashland, Inc. Heidi is responsible for managing the Valvoline CPG business in the U.S., including sales, trade marketing, category management, brand management, creative services and consumer research teams. She assumed her current post in 2013. Previously, Heidi was VP, Global Brands, Ashland Consumer Markets, leading brand management, marketing strategy and consumer research for the Valvoline family of products. She earlier served as Senior Global Marketing Director, Innovation, at ALCON, a Novartis Company. At Novartis she also oversaw global marketing for Fashion Wear and led several global color contact lens product launches, including Ciba Vision. Prior to ALCON, Heidi spent 5 years at Johnson & Johnson Merck and McNeil Consumer and Specialty Pharmaceuticals working on brand marketing for Pepcid, Mylanta, Mylicon, Motrin IB, and Tylenol, among others. Matheys’ other experience includes account management at Young & Rubicam Advertising on the Lincoln Mercury business and media buying/planning for a number of automotive dealers and associations at Graham Advertising. Heidi earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism/advertising from the University of Missouri and an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
Drew McKenzie oversees Ahalogy’s media strategy and operations, working with brands and agencies to align business and brand objectives with measurable media solutions. Prior to joining Ahalogy, he led and managed digital media strategy for all of Luxottica’s retail brands in North America, including Sunglass Hut, LensCrafters, Pearle Vision, Target Optical and Sears Optical. Before Luxottica, he spent eight years on the agency side in the areas of digital strategy, media and account management, serving clients such as U.S. Bank, Michaels Arts & Crafts, Procter & Gamble and LexisNexis. Drew started his career with an immersion in politics as an advance man for President George W. Bush. Outside of his role at Ahalogy, Drew serves as a mentor for The Brandery, a startup accelerator based in Cincinnati. He is also an angel investor and adviser for several startups focused on consumer services and digital media technology. @drewmckenzie
Randal C. Moss pioneered in the non-profit sector the use of Virtual Worlds for raising revenue, driving brand recognition and managing relationships. He was a national presenter for the American Marketing Association’s Hot Topics Tour from 2006-2008, a 4 time presenter at SXSW, and is a current content advisor for SXSW and SXSW V2V. Randal has earned awards and recognition from the National Human Services Assembly, the ePhilanthropy Foundation, and the State of Play conference. He has volunteered as a board member with the Jewish Federation of Greater Cincinnati, the Florida YMCA Youth In Government program, and as a grant reviewer for the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Communication. Randal presently drives brand engagement and revenue growth for a portfolio of brands as the Digital Marketing Manger at ACCO Brands. @RandalC
Matthew Newell spent the first decade of his career at BMG/Sony Music, marketing artists ranging from Dave Matthews Band to OutKast to Foo Fighters. He later served as a Creative Director for a boutique ad agency and then Director of Marketing for a Gannett-owned NBC television affiliate. Somewhere in there, he also built three start-ups, including a watch company and app store. When he’s not digitally marketing at State Farm’s HQ in Bloomington, he’s either shoveling snow or watching corn grow depending on the time of year.
Clarissa Niese is the Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President of Tire Discounters, the nation’s 9th largest retailer of tires, wheels and automotive services. In her position, Clarissa leads development of all chain-wide Communications, Design, Promotions and Program Implementation. Clarissa has 15 years of marketing and brand management experience on iconic consumer brands such as Pepto-Bismol, Prilosec OTC, Pampers, Duracell, Metamucil, Airheads and Mentos. She has been featured on the cover of the Wall Street Journal for her creative marketing to women approaches and is well known for her ability to develop strong teams through inspirational leadership. She is a graduate of The University of Cincinnati with degrees in Marketing, Real Estate and Middle Eastern Studies. She is an avid Bearcats fan and resides in Fort Thomas, Kentucky with her husband and 2 children. @mamaniese2
Jake Rouse is the Co-founder and CEO of Braxton Brewing Company, where he leads the company’s strategic vision and execution. Primarily responsible for bringing the “Taproom of the Future” to life, Jake is focused on discovering unique ways technology can enhance the beer drinking experience. Founded in 2014, Jake led the company to become the most funded brewery project on the popular crowd funding website Kickstarter by raising $71,000+ in just 30 days. In addition to Braxton Brewing Company, Jake is also the the founder of JRV a group focusing on helping early stage, high growth technology startups in the Midwest leverage best-in-class B2B marketing and strategic alliance practices. Jake spent the past 4 years at ExactTarget where he led partnerships and strategic alliances as the company grew dramatically resulting a successful IPO in 2012, and acquisition by Salesforce.com for $2.7B in 2013. Jake earned his undergraduate degree in Entrepreneurship and Marketing at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. @JacobRouse
Ted Rubin is a leading Social Marketing Strategist, Keynote Speaker, Brand Evangelist, and Acting CMO of Brand Innovators. In March 2009 he started using and evangelizing the term ROR, Return on Relationship, hashtag #RonR. Ted left his position as Chief Social Marketing Officer of Collective Bias on August 31, 2013. He remains the 5th largest shareholder. In the words of Collective Bias Co-Founder John Andrews… “Ted, you were the vision, heartbeat and soul of Collective Bias, thank you for building a great company. From innovations like cbSocially to the amazing relationships you built with the blogger community, clients and employees, you drove the epic growth. You will be missed!” Many people in the social media world know Ted for his enthusiastic, energetic and undeniably personal connection to people. Ted is the most followed CMO on Twitter according to Social Media Marketing Magazine; one of the most interesting CMOs on Twitter according to Say Media, #13 on Forbes Top 50 Social Media Power Influencers, and number #2 on the Leadtail list of Top 25 People Most Mentioned by digital marketers. ROR, #RonR, is the basis of his philosophy…It’s All About Relationships! His book, Return on Relationship was released January 29, 2013. His latest book, How To Look People in the Eye Digitally, is being released January 2015. Connect with Ted… TedRubin.com or @TedRubin
Marc Sternberg is co-founder of Brand Innovators, a leading producer of conferences for the advertising and emerging technology industries. From 2007-2011 he was president and COO of AlwaysOn, annually producing more than 20 successful conferences in the digital media, clean technology and cloud computing sectors. From 1989-2007 Marc was the vice president of advertising sales for The Hollywood Reporter. Marc has served on the boards of numerous charitable and non-profit organizations, including Make-A-Wish Foundation of Los Angeles and the Anti-Defamation League/LA. @marcsternberg1
Jon Tauber brings over 15 years of experience in the brand marketing, media and technology space. In his role at Outbrain, Jon partners with top brands to help consumers discover their positive owned and earned media. Before joining Outbrain, Jon held leadership positions at AOL, MillerCoors and McDonald’s, as well as account service positions at Tribal DDB and Leo Burnett. @taubertalk
As the Senior Digital and eCommerce Capabilities Manager for Unilever, Chuck Van Hyning is charged with maintaing the highest level of eCommerce integration at the company. This includes identifying and vetting data sources, incorporating data streams into the organization and its processes, developing U.S. online category management standards and strategy. He is also in charge of development of online capabilities, growing conversion via Brand.com and the creation, development, piloting and testing of new business models. Chuck joined Unilever in 2005. Prior to that he was an Account Manager with NPD and a Senior Analyst with Synnovate. Chuck has a BS in Marketing from Arizona State University and an MS in Management Information Systems from De Paul University.
In his role as Director of Corporate Marketing and Communications at Western & Southern Financial Group, Frank Weikel leads the Corporate Communications, Corporate Marketing, Digital, and eBusiness groups to build successful digital and traditional advertising and marketing campaigns for target groups from 200 to 74 million. Before joining Western & Southern, Frank worked in the automotive industry developing e-commerce strategies and solutions to maximize revenue and marketing results for car dealers across the country. He earned his BA at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio and is an active community volunteer with the Boy Scouts of America and Special Olympics. @FrankWeikel