Marissa Solis was about six months in to a big new role at one of the biggest snack companies in the world when one of the world’s biggest crisis hit. That’s not hyperbole. As the new head of all marketing initiatives, media, sports, and partnerships for the core brands of Frito-Lay North America, including Doritos, Cheetos, Tostitos, and dips, it was definitely not hyperbole.
That was Marissa’s new reality and she had to help smoothly and quickly do the equivalent of turning a battleship. But this dynamo had previously been tapped to lead the creation of a cross-functional Hispanic Business Unit at PepsiCo and had helped double beverage sales among U.S. Hispanic consumers in a short time, so she was the right woman to face down a pandemic.
Her throughline — and recipe for success? It always has to start with the consumer.
In Episode 17 Marissa explains her whirlwind responsibilities, the massive changes facing brands today, and how those Frito-Lay brands speak to specific audiences. We also talk about how COVID-19 has impacted campaigns from a Super Bowl sponsorship to a new direct to consumer approach. This is a great reminder for brands about the need to engage with consumers where they are. And right now, that is at home…with a pro-social commitment to community. For example, a big Cinco de Mayo campaign was planned and poised to roll out to retail…and instead quickly became Salsa for Cinco benefitting the Hispanic community — which has been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. Listen to the evolution of the #AmplifyBlackVoices campaign which included letting PepsiCo ad space be used instead by Black artists to showcase their work.
There’s much to digest in this episode! So grab a bag of chips, click play, and enjoy!
What also talked about:
- The importance of being agile in today’s marketing world
- Pivoting to the direct to consumer space
- The “Pantry Stock Phenomenon”
- The different personalities of Frito-Lay brands
- Today’s marketing renaissance
- Details on the benefits of Salsa for Cinco and #AmplifyBlackVoices campaigns
- PepsiCo’s commitment to diversity and inclusion in the workplace
- Engaging consumers where they are
- How Marissa and her family adjusted to the new normal!