The PGS Blog

The Problem With Growing Too Slowly

Although I caution against chasing unicorns, this is not meant to validate any brand's growth rate being in the single digits, YoY. This slow growth rate may be in line with the premium CPG sector overall, and it may be much faster than commodity brands

Why You Have to Transition from a B2B to a B2C Brand

The vast majority of consumer startups selling in retail get lulled into operating as a B2B company, even though they make products for the end consumer. This is because the initial data they manage concerns distributor case sales and retail account sales. They have no

The Risks of Raising A Lot of Money Too Early

Up until the pandemic, I saw lots of strange over-investment in emerging concepts in CPG. ZX ventures invested $1.5M in a brand new switchel brand as they began building investments in a non-alcoholic portfolio. $1.5M for a brand that has sold less than $500,000 is

Why Brokers Can Potentially Destroy Your Business

Brokers can open doors you cannot open on your preferred timeline. They can even get off-cycle meetings to happen. In both cases, intermediaries shine as access nodes where you couldn't make headway. In a world where large chains do annual resets, especially for the small

Draw Consumers From Outside Your Category

It's a law of marketing seldom discussed, but first popularized by Byron Sharp many years ago. What's the gist? Well, the evidence shows that consumers with a robust set of brands they're content within a category are much harder to distract with a new brand

COVID-19 Acceleration of Stress-based CPG Consumption

Pandemic acceleration is occurring at the intersection between primitive nutrient cues AND premium cues of restraint. Did you know that about 30% of American adults have already gained more than 5lbs of weight since the pandemic began? That's what I just found out in a

Will Driftwell Scalewell?

Today I shared my hot take on Driftwell with the Food Institute. I think it's the most niche product they've ever launched. Yet, that alone doesn't mean it will fail.  PepsiCo. Inc.’s PR tease for the Driftwell sleep aid beverage represents the company’s latest new brand creation since

Memorability: Does Your Brand Have It?

Memorability. It's the most critical growth pillar for premium CPG brands. Why? Because you don't have the cash, credibility, or sales network with which to leap to 80% ACV in mere months. So, how do you enhance it? Design a superbly positioned innovation at the head of

Don’t Hire a Marketing Director Before You Read This

Founders: before you hire your first marketing director, please read Allan Dib's classic, no shiny objects allowed, book on marketing planning. Like me, he is an experimentalist. All successful pros are experimenting with their consumer communications. It's effortless to waste money on campaigns. So be

Ramping Sales of Ramping Your Brand

OK. Maybe not precisely exponential growth yet. But, in the book business, where most business books sell less than a few hundred copies and the sales end after six months, RYB is doing OK. Good even. As of Sept. 30, I'm up to 1,800 lifetime