Gutsiest Brands


The Gutsiest Brands podcast is a show dedicated to truly understanding how bold, empathetic, and pioneering brands find their way in a hyper-competitive world.

In every episode we speak to a different innovative brand leader to learn about what makes them successful, what brands they think are gutsy, and to learn a little bit about who they really are.

Find Courage through Emotion with Brandon LarsonThis is Your Life with Lauren Wang
Jess Gaedeke, CRO of GutCheck, former Leader at Nielsen and Designalytics fan speaks with Lauren Wang, the founder and CEO of The Flex Company, a company who aims to help people with periods.  After Lauren spent 15 years suffering from infections from menstrual products, she decided to change the status quo, not just for herself, but for menstruators everywhere. She set out to create period products that were more innovative, sustainable, and made for the 21st century. Lauren’s Bio  Lauren frequently speaks on women’s health and entrepreneurship, and has been featured in TechCrunch, The New Yorker, Wired, The Washington Post, and NP. Lauren is a member of YPO and a graduate of Y Combinator. She gives back to her startup roots by mentoring entrepreneurs through both organizations, as well as with the Norrsken Foundation. Prior to founding The Flex Co., Lauren spent over a decade marketing leading consumer brands for companies including Coca-Cola, Upwork, and IMB, as well as advocating for issues she’s passionate about. She was the first in her family to graduate college, working full-time to earn her business degree from Georgia State University.  Lauren embodies gutsiness. Today, she’ll talk about why her path to entrepreneurship, the obstacles success comes with, expanding from direct-toc-consumer to mainstream retail, and how she convinced people who don’t menstruate to get behind her product. Kick back and enjoy another episode of the Gutsiest Brands podcast! To learn more about what it means to be gutsy, check out the Gutsiest Brands webpage.   Check out Lauren’s recommended song, and songs picked by our previous guests, by visiting the Spotify – Gutsiest Brands Podcast Playlist. Be sure to like, follow and share!
Apr 27 2022
48 mins
How to Grow Companies with Kristin Luck
Jess Gaedeke, GutCheck CRO and San Francisco 49ers superfan, speaks with serial entrepreneur Kristin Luck, Founder of ScaleHouse, President of ESOMAR, and ‘cat with 13 lives’, about scaling businesses, empathetic entrepreneurship, the benefit of female investing representation in male-dominated industries - like porn - and procuring silverware from Denny’s!You’re going to laugh a lot and learn a lot in this wild conversation with Kristin Luck, who was once fired from Dari Mart before going on to build and scale three technology companies with private equity backed exits! Listen in to discover how a now leading kombucha brand disrupted the market through an empathetic approach, why it takes guts to grow and scale a business, the importance of having a strong brand evangelist, and why, with 85% of purchase decisions being made by women, the investment community could benefit greatly from having more women in senior roles. Kristin's BioKristin Luck is known for building innovative technology led companies that scale quickly through non-traditional sales and marketing techniques.   She serves as an advisor and growth strategist to a slew of cutting-edge marketing and analytics technology and services firms through her growth strategy and M&A advisory firm, ScaleHouse. She is a founder focused on helping fellow founders and executive teams scale and monetize their businesses and works frequently with firms in international markets to execute their entry into the U.S. Kristin has consistently driven triple digit YOY performance improvement to leading marketing tech and services firms including The Harris Poll, Voxpopme, CanvsAI and SightX. Her work has been recognized in both the commercial (Fast Company, Forbes) and academic press (Research World, Journal of Brand Strategy) where she explores emerging marketing and growth strategy trends. She is consistently ranked as one of the top 100 sales and branding experts to follow on social media.   Grab your favorite beverage and nestle for another episode of the Gutsiest Brands podcast. To learn more about what it means to be gutsy, check out the Gutsiest Brands webpage.   Check out Kristin’s recommended song, and songs picked by our previous guests, by visiting the Spotify – Gutsiest Brands Podcast Playlist. Be sure to like, follow and share the playlist!
Mar 25 2022
59 mins
Irrational Expectations with Karen Howland
Jess Gaedeke, CRO of GutCheck, former Leader at Nielsen and Designalytics, and current turtleneck aficionado, speaks with Karen Howland, the Managing Director at CircleUp Equity , an investment platform powered by technology, to discuss what it takes to have guts in business. In this unique episode we take a look at how an innovative investment firm is using a blend of technology and human experience to help entrepreneurs stand behind their bold ideas and pioneer new paths. Jess and Karen show how being grounded in empathy and creating highly personalized experiences lead brands to sustainable growth, and how Circle Up invests in companies that have traditionally been denied access to capital.Karen's BioKaren joined CircleUp in 2018 and serves as Managing Director. Before joining CircleUp, she served as an independent consultant providing financial services to small-to-mid sized consumer-centric companies. Prior to that, she spent over 15 years at top-tier international investment firms, including Citadel, Barclays Capital, and UBS where she held positions in the Investment Banking and Equity Research divisions focusing on the consumer and retail sectors. Mrs. Howland received her B.S. from Tulane University. Let’s listen in and see what brands Karen believes have guts, which she feels a special connection to, and why we should have irrational expectations in business. To learn more about what it means to be gutsy, check out the Gutsiest Podcast webpage.Check out Karen’s recommended song by visiting the Spotify – Gutsiest Brands Podcast Playlist. We’ll regularly be adding our guest’s recommended songs, so be sure to like and share the list!
Feb 3 2022
45 mins
People, Purpose, and Provenance with Craig Dubitsky
Rob Wengel the CEO of GutCheck, founder of Experience Innovation, and iced tea drinker extraordinaire sits down with Craig Dubitsky, Chief Innovation Strategist at Colgate-Palmolive, the founder of Hello Products and likely the friendliest guy you’ll ever meet. In this inaugural episode, Craig and Rob take a spirited and fast-paced look at the importance of being human-centric in designing and marketing everyday products.From how Method soap was launched through to the reason why his favorite book is an anthology of design patents, Craig reveals why every touch point between a brand and its audience matters, why being rooted in empathy is so important, and why you should reject those who tell you can’t do something.Craig's BioCraig is obsessed with design, transformational brands, and elevating the everyday things around us. He was an early investor and board member in method, the co-founder and creative lead at eos Products, the CMO of Popcorn, Indiana, and a board member of the Art Directors Club. He is Chairman of Lexicon’s Advisory Board because he digs names and was named to Advertising Age’s Creativity 50 as one of the Most Influential and Innovative Creative Thinkers and Doers. Craig’s a lover, not a fighter, and started Hello Brands because he was tired of hearing about a war in his mouth. So, let’s dig in and see what makes Craig Dubitsky tick, why he’s so darn successful, and why GutCheck thinks he and the brands he leads are gutsy. To learn more about what it means to be gutsy, check out the Gutsiest Brands webpage.Check out Craig’s recommended song by visiting the Spotify – Gutsiest Brands Podcast Playlist . Don’t forget to like and share it! We’ll regularly be adding our guest’s recommended songs.
Jan 28 2022
1 hr 6 mins